08 January 2013

100 best children's novels

A couple years ago Betsy, at A Fuse #8 Production, did a poll, asking readers to nominate the best children's chapter books. She repeated it again last year. Unfortunately, I almost completely missed it - in fact, by the time I found out about it she was already almost through reporting the results.

Here (finally) is the new list:

1. Charlotte’s Web, by E B White (#1 in 2010)
2. A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle (#2)
3. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, by J K Rowling (#3)
4. The Giver, by Lois Lowry (#7)
5. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, by C S Lewis (#4)
6. Holes, by Louis Sachar (#6)
7. From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, by E L Konigsburg (#5)
8. Anne of Green Gables, by L M Montgomery (#9)
9. The Westing Game, by Ellen Raskin (#11)
10. Bridge to Terabithia, by Katherine Paterson (#13)
11. When You Reach Me, by Rebecca Stead (#39)
12. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, by J K Rowling (#14)
13. The Thief, by Megan Whalen Turner (#83)
14. The Hobbit, by J R R  Tolkien (#12)
15. The Secret Garden, by Frances Hodgson Burnett (#8)
16. Tuck Everlasting, by Natalie Babbitt (#20)
17. Harriet the Spy, by Louise Fitzhugh (#16)
18. The Book of Three, by Lloyd Alexander (#82)
19. Little House in the Big Woods, by Laura Ingalls Wilder (#23)
20. Because of Winn-Dixie, by Kate DiCamillo (#15)
21. The Phantom Tollbooth, by Norton Juster (#10)
22. The Dark is Rising, by Susan Cooper (#29)
23. Hatchet, by Gary Paulsen (#26)
24. Ramona the Pest, by Beverly Cleary (#43)
25. The Watsons Go to Birmingham, 1963, by Christopher Paul Curtis (#34)
26. Winnie-the-Pooh, by A A Milne (#30)
27. Little House on the Prairie, by Laura Ingalls Wilder (#42)
28. The Golden Compass, by Philip Pullman (#45)
29. The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy, by Jeanne Birdsall (#48)
30. Matilda, by Roald Dahl (#18)
31. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll (#27)
32. Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, by Mildred Taylor (#37)
33. Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH, by Robert C O’Brien (#32)
34. Where the Red Fern Grows, by Wilson Rawls (#46)
35. Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, by Judy Blume (#44)
36. The Witch of Blackbird Pond, by Elizabeth George Speare (#41)
37. The Wednesday Wars, by Gary D Schmidt (--)
38. Frindle, by Andrew Clements (#49)
39. The Invention of Hugo Cabret, by Brian Selznick (#52)
40. Maniac Magee, by Jerry Spinelli (#17)
41. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, by L Frank Baum (#40)
42. Gone-Away Lake, by Elizabeth Enright (#63)
43. Jacob Have I Loved, by Katherine Paterson (--)
44. Okay for Now, by Gary D Schmidt (--)
45. Island of the Blue Dolphins, by Scott O’Dell (#50)
46. The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle, by Avi (#60)
47. Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott (#25)
48. The Bad Beginning, by Lemony Snicket (the series as a whole was #71)
49. My Father’s Dragon, by Ruth Stiles Gannett (#72)
50. Number the Stars, by Lois Lowry (#56)
51. The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, A Princess, Some Soup, and a Spool of Thread, by Kate DiCamillo (#22)
52. Betsy-Tacy, by Maud Hart Lovelace (#70)
53. The Graveyard Book, by Neil Gaiman (#80)
54. Half Magic, by Edward Eager (#31)
55. All-of-a-Kind Family, by Sydney Taylor (#79)
56. A Little Princess, by Frances Hodgson Burnett (#28)
57. The Wolves of Willoughby Chase, by Joan Aiken (#58)
58. Swallows and Amazons, by Arthur Ransome (#94)
59. The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, by Kate DiCamillo (#97)
60. Bud, Not Buddy, by Christopher Paul Curtis (#47)
61. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, by Roald Dahl (#19)
62. Clementine, by Sara Pennypacker (#107)
63. The Great Gilly Hopkins, by Katherine Paterson (#55)
64. The Twenty-One Balloons, by William Pene du Bois (--)
65. Wonder, by R J Palacio (--)
66. The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate, by Jacqueline Kelly (--)
67. A Long Way from Chicago, by Richard Peck (#64)
68. The High King, by Lloyd Alexander (#88)
69. The Ruins of Gorlan, by John Flanagan (--)
70. Walk Two Moons, by Sharon Creech (#68)
71. Each Little Bird That Sings, by Deborah Wiles (--)
72. Where the Mountain Meets the Moon, by Grace Lin (#81)
73. The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, by Barbara Robinson (--)
74. Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret, by Judy Blume (#36)
75. The Saturdays, by Elizabeth Enright (#51)
76. Diary of a Wimpy Kid, by Jeff Kinney (--)
77. My Side of the Mountain, by Jean Craighead George (#73)
78. Ballet Shoes, by Noel Streatfeild (#65)
79. The Egypt Game, by Zilpha Keatley Snyder (#100)
80. The Four-Story Mistake, by Elizabeth Enright (--)
81. The Witches, by Roald Dahl (#96)
82. The Cricket in Times Square, by George Selden (#108)
83. Ozma of Oz, by L Frank Baum (--)
84. The Long Winter, by Laura Ingalls Wilder (--)
85. Ella Enchanted, by Gail Carson Levine (#92)
86. Peter Pan, by J M Barrie (--)
87. The Strange Case of Origami Yoda, by Tom Angleberger (--)
88. The BFG, by Roald Dahl (#54)
89. The Mouse and the Motorcycle, by Beverly Cleary (--)
90. The Children of Green Knowe, by Lucy M Boston (#98)
91. Pippi Longstocking, by Astrid Lindgren (#95)
92. Flipped, by Wendelin Van Draanen (--)
93. Journey to the River Sea, by Eva Ibbotson (--)
94. Ramona and her Father, by Beverly Cleary (#89)
95. The Little Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupery (--)
96. The Horse and His Boy, by C S Lewis (--)
97. The Diamond in the Window, by Jane Langton (--)
98. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, by J K Rowling (#35)
99. The Boxcar Children, by Gertrude Chandler Warner (#117)
100. Love That Dog, by Sharon Creech (#75)

I think I've read 58 of these.

There was a big turnover between the two polls - 24 of the 100 books on this list weren't on the 2010 list (though three of them were on Betsy's additional post which listed the books that almost made the top 100 -  numbers 101-120).  Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, by Rick Riordan, was #21 in the previous poll; it's the highest-ranked book from last time that fell off the list completely. Other books that appeared last time but don't here are:

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, by J K Rowling (#24)
James and the Giant Peach, by Roald Dahl (#33)
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, by J K Rowling (#38)
The Wind in the Willows, by Kenneth Grahame (#53)
Ramona Quimby, Age 8, by Beverly Cleary (#57)
Inkheart, by Cordelia Funke (#59)
Stargirl, by Jerry Spinelli (#61)
The Secret of the Old Clock, by "Carolyn Keene" (#62)
Henry Huggins, by Beverly Cleary (#66)
Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher, by Bruce Coville (#67)
The Mysterious Benedict Society, by Trentoon Lee Stewart (#69)
The Borrowers, by Mary Norton (#74)
Out of the Dust, by Karen Hesse (#76)
The City of Ember, by Jeanne DuPrau (#77)
Johnny Tremaine, by Esther Forbes (#78)
The Little White Horse, by Elizabeth Goudge (#84)
On the Banks of Plum Creek, by Laura Ingalls Wilder (#85)
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, by J K Rowling (#86)
The View from Saturday, by E L Konigsburg (#87)
Sarah, Plain and Tall, by Patricia MacLachlan (#90)
Sideways Stories from Wayside School, by Louis Sachar (#91)
Caddie Woodlawn, by Carol Ryrie Brink (#93)
The Indian in the Cupboard, by Lynne Reid Banks (#99)

(I've read 15 of those.)

Note: I actually started writing this post several months ago, but got bogged down in deleting all the superfluous HTML which Blogger had for some bizarre reason inserted into the list - there was actually far more HTML than list. (Was it really necessary to specify "style="background-color: white; line-height: 15px; text-align: left; text-decoration: none;" twice - once before the item number and again before the book's title - for each of the 100 books??) Apologies to Betsy and everyone else for the delay....

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