When I remember my mother reading these stories to me or paging through them under the covers in the dark with my tiny reading light, it brings a tear to my eye. Okay, maybe several tears. Alright, alright, maybe I completely break down from the overwhelming nostalgia. We should all take a look back at the five books that stole our hearts as kids.
1. Corduroy by Don FreemanBuy It From Amazon
The story of a teddy bear named Corduroy who lives in a department store and is missing a button. The missing button stops the bear from being sold, so he goes on a quest to find it. He never does find that button, which I find to be so incredibly depressing. It’s a void which he was never able to fill. Fortunately for the bear, the kind girl from earlier in the story uses all of her piggy bank savings to buy the bear and sews in one of her own buttons, leading to the happy ending.
2. Frog and Toad by Arnold LobelBuy It From Amazon
Our two amphibian friends in these stories share such a powerful friendship that it’s hard to conceive of them apart. Their adventures were always exploring the value of comradery in the face of things like loneliness, insecurity, and existential dread… all packaged in the pages of a children’s book.
3. The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise BrownBuy It From Amazon
By the same author as Goodnight Moon, this one features a rabbit who imagines himself being much more than just a rabbit until he comes to the realization that he has to stay with his mother and that he will always remain her child. A testament to a child’s imagination and the call to adventure.
4. The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams and William NicholsonBuy It From Amazon
Another leporine tale. This one is even worse than the Runaway one because it’s about a cute little stuffed rabbit that so desperately wants to become real before almost being burned to ash when the little boy who owns him falls sick and needs to have all his things disinfected. Naturally, a magic fairy comes to save the day and turns the rabbit into a real one.
5. Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice SendakBuy It From Amazon
This one is a classic, and the illustrations are absolutely beautiful. Perhaps you saw the very strange film adaptation, but regardless, it’s a tearjerker of epic proportions. A lesson that even when you are surrounded by people, or in this case monsters, it’s still possible to feel incredibly lonely. And that’s okay.
Okay, it’s over. I’m sorry for the waterworks. Here’s a tissue.