The Swiss Family Robinson, The Catcher in the Rye and A Kestrel for a Knave on Bishop's Stortford College librarian Lizzie Hall's list of classic children's books
Bishop's Stortford College Prep School librarian Lizzie Hall writes about the magic of storytelling...
Dear Reader. A classic is a book that has stood the test of time and is still thoroughly enjoyed by children today.
By turning the pages, they will discover bygone eras, time-honoured tales and exciting escapades.
Here's a selection of kids' classics...
Encyclopedia Brown; Boy Detective by Donald J Sobel
Leroy Brown, AKA Encyclopedia Brown, is Idaville neighbourhood's 10-year-old star detective. With an uncanny knack for trivia, he solves mysteries for the neighbourhood kids through his own detective agency.
But his dad also happens to be the chief of the Idaville police department and, every night around the dinner table, Encyclopedia helps him solve his most baffling crimes.
With 10 confounding mysteries in each book, not only does Encyclopedia have a chance to solve them, but the reader is given all the clues as well.
Interactive and full of interesting bits of information, it's classic Encyclopedia Brown!
Raggedy Ann Stories by Johnny Gruelle
When Raggedy Ann arrived in Marcella's nursery, she quickly became the leader of all the dolls.
Raggedy Ann always strives to be good - and she usually succeeds!
Join Raggedy Ann on adventures from rescuing Fido, the family dog, to getting her famous "I Love You" heart, to flying in a kite and much more!
Mr Popper's Penguins by Richard Atwater
The loveable Mr Popper dreams of being an intrepid Antarctic explorer, living life among the penguins alongside his hero, Admiral Drake.
So he is shocked one day when the admiral responds to his fan letter by sending him a real, live penguin!
Soon, this penguin is joined by another and, before long, Mr Popper has an ice rink in the basement and a dozen delightful penguins living in his house.
With barely enough money to feed his family and an increasing demand for raw fish and canned shrimp, what can the wonderfully imaginative Mr Popper do but train his penguins and then take the show on the road!
The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann Wyss
Following a wild and raging storm, the Swiss family Robinson are stranded at sea. But the thundering waves have swept them off to a tropical island, where a new life awaits them.
Their ship is laden with supplies and the island is packed with treasures, so they soon adapt and discover new dangers and delights every day.
Lizzie Dripping by Helen Cresswell
Everyone in the village where Lizzie lives thinks that she's a dreamer - so it's no wonder that they don't believe her when she says she's seen a witch.
But Lizzie doesn't care because she knows it's true and having a witch for a friend makes life much more exciting.
The Wolves of Willoughby Chase by Joan Aiken
Long ago, at a time in history that never happened, England was overrun with wolves.
But as Bonnie and her cousin Sylvia discover, real danger often lies closer to home.
Their new governess, Miss Slighcarp, doesn't seem at all nice. She shuts Bonnie in a cupboard, fires the faithful servants and sends the cousins far away from Willoughby Chase to a place they will never be found.
Can Bonnie and Sylvia outwit the wicked Miss Slighcarp and her network of criminals, forgers and snitches?
Teenagers and YA readers
The Catcher in the Rye by J D Salinger
It's Christmas time and Holden Caulfield has just been expelled from yet another school.
Fleeing the crooks at Pencey Prep, he pinballs around New York City seeking solace in fleeting encounters - shooting the bull with strangers in dive hotels, wandering alone round Central Park, getting beaten up by pimps and cut down by erstwhile girlfriends.
The city is beautiful and terrible, in all its neon loneliness and seedy glamour, its mingled sense of possibility and emptiness.
Holden passes through it like a ghost, thinking always of his kid sister Phoebe, the only person who really understands him, and his determination to escape the phonies and find a life of true meaning.
The Outsiders by S E Hinton
Teenagers in a small Oklahoma town have split into two gangs, divided by money, tastes and attitude.
The Socs' idea of having a good time is beating up Greasers like Ponyboy Curtis.
Ponyboy knows what to expect and knows he can count on his brothers and friends - until the night someone takes things too far and life is changed forever.
A Kestrel for a Knave by Barry Hines
Life is tough and cheerless for Billy Casper, a troubled teenager growing up in the small Yorkshire mining town of Barnsley.
Treated as a failure at school and unhappy at home, Billy discovers a new passion in life when he finds Kes, a kestrel hawk.
Billy identifies with her silent strength and she inspires in him the trust and love that nothing else can, discovering through her the passion missing from his life.
Barry Hines' acclaimed novel continues to reach new generations of teenagers and adults with its powerful story of survival in a tough, joyless world.