Friday, July 3, 2009
A Childhood in Books: Part 4
I had my fair share of favorite authors growing up but none more so than Scott O'Dell. From the time I turned eight up until I started Jr. High School, I adored Scott O'Dell. It all started when my mother and I went on vacation and my school librarian recommended The Serpent Never Sleeps as a good book to take with us. I actually don't remember the book very well, in fact all I remember about it was the weird cover (it was a bunch of green and blue swirls which I guess were supposed to be a serpent). Apparently (from Amazon) the book was about Pocahontas, but any way... my mother was wayyy more interested in it than I was and I really had no desire to read any more of his books. Not long after, however, my school held it's annual "Battle of the Books" and Island of the Blue Dolphin was on the list. I read it and then I think I re-read it about a hundred times. It was my favorite book for years and I use to feel so proud about reading it because I thought it was an "adult" book. We use to go to Angel Island a lot when I was a kid and I think that was part of the appeal of the book for me (because I always pictured Karana living there even though I guess Catalina was the real inspiration). After Island of the Blue Dolphin, I read Zia (which was a sequel), Sarah Bishop and a couple others but I wasn't as crazy about them as Island. Then during a school book fair I found Sing Down the Moon and Thunder Rolling in the Mountains and adored both of them. I loved the style, the characters, the themes- really everything in those Scott O'Dell books. When I think back to the happy times in those last years before adolescence, I think of reading Island of the Blue Dolphin and Scott O'Dell.