Author-Appreciation Week: Friday Five Excerpts

To end out the week, I’ve decided to go with the openings from five of my favorite books from childhood…a few of the ones still on my shelves. These stories got me started, and my appreciation for this is without bounds.

Thanks again to Heidi R. Kling for setting up the week & Sara from Novel Novice for designing the avatar. And thanks to everybody for all the great posts, as well.

     One cold rainy day when my father was a little boy, he met an old alley cat on the street. The cat was very drippy and uncomfortable so my father said, “Wouldn’t you like to come home with me?”
MY FATHER’S DRAGON, by Ruth Stiles Gannett, illustrated by Ruth Chrisman Gannett

The wind swept around the corners and chased clouds of dust out of the ruins of bombed houses. The cold, clinging darkness of the October evening dropped down upon the strange city from a leaden sky. The streets were deserted. Nobody was out who could possibly help it.
THE ARK, by Margot Benary-Isbert

When Mary Lennox was sent to Misselthwaite Manor to live with her uncle everybody said she was the most disagreeable-looking child ever seen. It was true, too. She had a little thin face and a little thin body, thin light hair and a sour expression. Her hair was yellow, and her face was yellow because she had been born in India and had always been ill in one way or another.
THE SECRET GARDEN, by Frances Hodgson Burnett, illustrated by Tasha Tudor

Mrs. Rachel Lynde lived just where the Avonlea main road dipped down into a little hollow, fringed with alders and ladies’ eardrops and traversed by a brook that had its source away back in the woods of the old Cuthbert place; it was reputed to be an intricate, headlong brook in its earlier course through these woods, with dark secrets of pool and cascade; but by the time it reached Lynde’s Hollow it was a quiet, well-conducted little stream, for not even a brook could run past Mrs. Rachel Lynde’s door without due regard for decency and decorum…
ANNE OF GREEN GABLES, by L. M. Montgomery

     The porter, carrying Cathy’s suitcase, went ahead through the doors of Idlewild International Airport. “You want to weigh in now?” he asked of the portly woman who walked beside a small, dark-haired girl of about twelve.
     Mrs. Bertha Branson shook her head. “Not right away. Someone else has this young lady’s ticket. We’re to wait at the foot of the stairs to the observation deck.”
     The porter nodded and walked on so fast that Cathy had to skip now and then to keep up with his long legs. Because she was anxious and uncertain, she grasped her shiny new red overnight case more tightly and shifted the coat over her arms.
MYSTERY ON THE ISLE OF SKYE, by Phyllis A. Whitney

Have a wonderful weekend of reading, writing, and–hopefully–sunshine!


  1. jama says:

    Sigh. Secret Garden, Anne of Green Gables :).


  2. Kathy Sweedler says:

    You hit a lot of my favorites — I do remember reading all of these. But somehow my copies went somewhere else …. 🙂


  3. Jen Robinson says:

    Just great, Becky. 200 books on my TBR shelves, and now I want to go dig up old Phyllis Whitney YA novels. Thanks a lot. (grin!). Love the last 3 quotes.

    Have a great weekend!


    • beckylevine says:

      My pleasure, Jen! I was thinking about you as I typed that in; you may be the only other person I know who read those. 🙂


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