Happy World Book Day! The international event where children dress up as their favourite novelised characters (like Spiderman, for some reason) and adults lament about the days of yore when they actually had time to read!
Take today to reinvigorate your love for reading. Instead of milling about clothes shops during your lunch-break, take a trip to your local book shop and pick something nice out for yourself.
Reading has the most restorative and escapist powers but, because of the rate at which we consume information, it’s easy to forget that. Reading a book takes time, patience and imagination – all three of which we had by the bucket load when we were kids.
Here are five books that inspired us as children for World Book Day.
1. Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone by J. K. Rowling
The Harry Potter books are a seminal centrefold of any childhood. In fact, I remember my age and life events relative to what Harry Potter I was reading at the time. The first in the series is by far the most imaginative and accessible. It resonates with any child in the process of transitioning and contextualises the complexity of courage for both young and old.
2. Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman
An important novel now more than ever. and a crucial part of the secondary school curriculum. It tells of a dystopian Pangea where the races are divided invesely to our history and highlights the systemic problems with the way governments deal with issues of race. A fantastic start to a poignant and unmissable series.
3. The Curious Incident of the Dog In The Night-Time by Mark Haddon
One of my favourite books of all time to this day. The Curious Incident is an accurate and affecting window into the mind and process of a young man with behavioural difficulties. The troubles and whimsical charm of Christopher Boone awakens a deep empathy within the reader – something we could do with a lot more of in today’s youth.
4. Skellig by David Almond
The gothic aesthetic of homeless man turned man-bat is juxtaposed by the warm kindness of protagonist and every-boy, Michael. Skellig is a hopeful tale of reserving judgement and embracing mystery.
5. Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer
The book that ignited my passion for all things mystical, Artemis Fowl is the amoral, 12 year old genius we all wanted to be but couldn’t because of the foundational compassion our parents laid for us. A story as much about pixies, civil war and heists as it is about accepting different creeds and bending the rules for the greater good.