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Bookworm: A Memoir of Childhood Reading Hardcover – 1 Mar 2018
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"This is THE most wonderful, funny, clever, charming, evocative book." (India Knight)
"A wonderful romp through the pages of childhood, illuminated by wisdom, humour and enthusiasm." (Bernard Cornwell)
"Here’s a book for people who love books, by a person who loves books. Bookworms unite (or just sit in our separate corners and read!)" (Stylist)
"A delicously nostalgic treat that will make you want to pull out all those old favourites again" (Good Housekeeping)
"Artfully evokes that particular magic of reading as a child… Deliciously unrepentant, Mangan’s Bookworm makes a timely case not just for how vital reading is, but also for rereading books as a child, and how reading remains consoling, fortifying and, sometimes, magical." (The Sunday Times)
"What Mangan does brilliantly is express the experience of reading and articulate the emotional connections we make with stories. She understands how books become entwined in our lives and help us make sense of the world. You don’t need to have enjoyed the same books as she has to recognise the pure, life-affirming joy of reading that Bookworm celebrates so eloquently." (The Observer)
"Lucy Mangan has enough comic energy to power the National Grid... We need this new memoir about her childhood of being a bookworm. It's enchanting." (The Spectator)
"To read Lucy Mangan’s memoir of growing up bookish is to be taken back to a time in life when reading wasn’t merely a gentle pleasure or mild obligation but an activity as essential as breathing." (Guardian)
"Anyone who has ever preferred books to life will recognise Lucy Mangan as a kindred spirit. Her moving, funny, honest and superbly-written memoir about how childhood reading shapes our personalities, memories and chances could not be more timely or more needed in an age of library closures, embattled Humanities teaching and Philistinism." (Amanda Craig)
"Lucy Mangan's passionate, amusing and nostalgic reflection upon her favourite children’s books deserves to become as much of a classic as the novels she revisits." (Sunday Express)
About the Author
Lucy Mangan is a columnist for Guardian Weekend magazine and Stylist, and the author of My Family and Other Disasters, The Reluctant Bride and Hopscotch and Handbags.
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I to was a bookworm , reading anything, everywhere , by torch light , street light , huddled in a corner whilst life went on around me .I have missed a fair few meals because I didn't even know it was meal time !
Lucy perfectly captures the ' just one more page / chapter ' accurately. It had some very warm passages where I laughed out aloud . I did enjoy the tales behind the stories , and am pleased I'm not alone disliking the cat in the hat intensely .
This book perfectly captures the pure pleasure of a reader, the smell of books and bookshops , the feel of each new page on your hand and fingers, as you journeyed with each character .The utter joy of opening a parcel and hoping its the book you've yearned for !
I have read so many of these books and especially loved the Ruggles family .
It was an utter joy to know that there are those like me , reviewers and Lucy alike ,lost in the world of words and the magic they impart to those responsive to text .
I have also spent a great deal of time in tears reading this book ( hence the title )
I lost all my childhood books , one day I had a bookshelf full , then they were gone , as a family illness broke our home and family up. I hadn't understood till now how much the books and stories meant to me .
A recommended read, well done.
Starting with classic picture books like The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Where The Wild Things Are and Mog, Mangan then goes on to talk about her first chapter books - delighted to see Teddy Robinson and The Owl Who Was Afraid Of The Dark making appearances - before addressing her love of novels for older children and finally for young adults.
This is a very personal account of reading, so don't expect an exhaustive history of children's literature here - it's very much about the books that Mangan enjoyed and it's very much rooted in the 70s and 80s when she was growing up. There are other books if you're looking for something more academic and objective. But for me, born in the 70s and turning 14 in 1990, this book is gloriously nostalgic, as well as being funny and often moving.
Reading this book returned me to the feeling of being a new reader again, of discovering magical worlds even of how I felt when I actually began to read properly and the words just flowed through me. Moments came back to me too; how I felt when I ordered my very first, bought it myself hardback, about the climbing of Everest and how it felt when I was first allowed upstairs to the adult public library and having no real idea where I should begin!
A wonderful read for the bookworms among us!
Bookworm is a funny and endearing tour of Lucy Mangan's childhood reading which delivers a glowing insight into the eccentricities of the author's family, as well as a carefully researched account of the origins of many of our most beloved children's titles. Perhaps more importantly, it also maps out a solid set of references to guide me as I seek to broaden my own little daughter's reading tastes. Is it too late for baby's first feminist tract, Sugarpink Rose, I wonder? - although I see that it probably is, with only one copy available on Amazon for a singular £192.
This is a delightful book, and one which I will pass on to others who share my, and Lucy's, love of the written word.
It may have also helped me appreciate my son and his behaviours more- I have now reduced the times I tell him to stop reading and go and play outside!
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I remember that feeling of cracking into a new book with utter pleasure and drifting away for hours into the world of imagination that the author...Read more