What a lovely thread...
I started reading when I was 4 years old or so and was therefore not allowed to read every book that I wanted to...but I did anyway in my room ;)
I first read different fairy tales such as Cinderella. I loved anything by the Grimm brothers and later on, fairy tales by Hans Christian Andersen. I can still remember that I was pretty shocked and scared by “The Snow Queen” because of the boy with the splinter in his eye - after reading that one, I put the book away and have been scared of hurting my eyes ever since :eek: ...Today, I am convinced that I shouldn’t have read it because it is too scary for a 4 or 5 year old.
I then started reading books by Astrid Lindgren, esp. “Pippi Longstocking” (Pipi Langstrumpf in German)and Erich Kästner, which I still love. These books were followed by “Around the world in eighty days” - which I read after watching the TV series - and “The animal farm”. Of course I didn’t get the intention of the book when I was young, but I was worried about the thought of pigs ruling the world!
At the age of 10 or 11 I only read non-fictional books, mainly about the First and Second World War and the Nazis. I thought that “I had to”, because of the fact that I’m a German citizen. During my stay at my mother’s family’s house in the Philippines, which was at the age of 14, I had the only opportunity to read “Mein Kampf”, as this book is still strictly forbidden in Germany.
At that time, I was also able to start reading English books, and the first book was “The picture of Dorian Grey” by Oscar Wilde; I don’t know why, but I liked that book so much that I haven’t stopped reading books by Irish writers, including James Joyce, ever since...
@ Ari: I also read “The catcher in the rye” and could relate to what Holden “said”. I had long discussions about that book with my English teacher (who, afterwards, didn’t really like me anymore), because he read it for the first time when he was 24...too old to understand the thoughts and feelings of teens, IMO.
There are so many other books that I could mention, as I was constantly reading when I was younger, but there's just not enough space ;)