"Narnia Triumphs Over Potter" is the headline in an article in today's Telegraph (UK), that offers yet another list of the top 50 children's books (at least, I feel that I have read many such UK lists in the past year...maybe it's just me). In this case, the books were chosen by parents, so many of the top books are older--Enid Blyton's Famous Five series is in third place, for instance. I devoured these when I was young, and was very angry indeed at my mother for leaving our complete set behind in the Bahamas when we moved back to the states when I was 11--like many parents, she never liked Blyton, which perhaps added spice to my reading experience. The fairytales of Hans Christian Anderson are in 22nd place, much higher than where I would have put them. Any collection that includes a story about insects crawling over the frozen-open eyeballs of a little girl (The Girl Who Stepped on a Loaf) is not one that I crack open regularly to share with my children.
It was very interesting, however, to learn that since its publication in 1960, The Very Hungry Caterpillarar has sold about 1 copy a minute.