Summer Reading: GHPA Doctors Share Their Favorite Childhood Books

Whether it’s a required book for the new school year, a book while relaxing at the beach, or a fun book to pass the time, reading is an important part of summer break.

Reading has significant benefits to children. It helps with their concentration, creativity, cognitive and language development.

We asked some of our doctors to share their favorites.

As a young child, Dr. Heather Barrow loved the Serendipity books by Steven Cosgrove and The Berenstain Bears books by Stan and Jan Berenstain. As a student, she enjoyed The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett and The Snow Queen by Hans Christian Andersen. Some of her favorite reads as an adult have included the Harry Potter books by J. K. Rowling and The Hunger Games books by Suzanne Collins.

Dr. Betsy Triggs’ favorite childhood book was Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame. She loved the story of the little animals living their own little lives on the banks of the river while the humans stomped around nearby. The animal characters were fascinating — Mole, Rat, Toad and Badger. The illustrations in the version she had were done by Tasha Tudor, who is still Dr. Triggs favorite children’s illustrator. Tudor really brought those characters alive with her beautiful watercolors.

Dr. Triggs second favorite book was a book of poetry called Now We are Six by A. A. Milne, the same man who wrote all the Winnie the Pooh books. It is about Christopher Robin when he is a six-year-old little boy. Dr. Triggs memorized them all as a child and can still recite most of them. “When I was one, I was just begun. When I was two, I was nearly new…”

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein, a childhood classic, was Dr. Travis Walters’ favorite book. This book has several different meanings including the ideal of unconditional love and friendship.

Dr. Kimberly Buie’s most loved book was Anna of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery. A story for all ages, this heart-warming book shares the adventures of an 11-year-old orphan girl, Anne Shirley, who is mistakenly sent to live on a farm on Prince Edward Island.

Whatever the book of interest, it’s recommended by most experts that parents spend at least 15- or 20-minutes reading with their kids daily. If you’re in need of new book ideas, be sure to check out your local library and Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library book gifting program.

Reading early and often with your child can help him or her cultivate a lifelong love of reading.