Look forward to the holidays with these fantastic titles at hand.

THE WONDERFUL WIZARD OF OZ by L. Frank Baum

Dorothy lives in Kansas and has great dreams. One day a cyclone lifts her and drops her in the enchanted land of the Munchkins. Here she meets some fantastic characters — the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodsman, the Cowardly Lion and the Wicked Witch of the West. A book full of adventure and fun it has brought joy to generations of readers since its first appearance in 1900.

JUST SO STORIES by Rudyard Kipling

Have you ever wondered about the nature of things? Like the elephant’s trunk, the leopard’s spots, the song of the whale and oh! so many more things? This book will answer most of those questions. It is best to read the Just So Stories aloud, because the prose is lyrical, sing-song and sometimes even with made up words. These 12 stories were written for Kipling’s daughter and they were so named because she wanted them “just so”.

KING ARTHUR AND HIS KNIGHTS by Howard Pyle

The world of King Arthur and his knights of the Round Table are magical. It is a chronicle of the adventures of King Arthur as he draws the sword Excalibur from the anvil and proves his claim to the throne. It is a story of love, treachery, scheming but also of victory, chivalry and drama. Pyle tells a forceful tale bringing alive the past vividly.

THE CALL OF THE WILD by Jack London

The story is set in the late 1800s. Buck, a large dog, lives a comfortable live on an estate in California. One day, he is kidnapped and transported to the Yukon to be a sled dog during the gold rush. He tries to rebel but is beaten into submission. This is a story of survival, of a call to the roots and also of finding your inner dignity and what it takes to be a leader. It is interesting to read how Buck reverts to his Wolf ancestry when the need for survival kicks in.

PETER PAN by J.M. Barrie

The Darling nursery gets a visitor one night. It is Peter Pan. He meets the Darlings — Wendy, Michael and John. He becomes friendly with them, and teaches them to fly and takes them to visit the Lost Boys in Neverland. They have a lot of adventures and get into a fight with Captain Hook, the evil leader of the pirates. But they also have a friend in little Tinkerbell, the fairy.

Interestingly written, Barrie takes you into a world hitherto unknown. You fly in the night sky with a wonderful friend and get to meet exciting characters. Barrie’s prose is a mix of wit, sadness, excitement and poetry. A fantasy story that you would love to read.

THE RAILWAY CHILDREN by E. Nesbit

Roberta, Peter and Phyllis live a happy life with their parents in a villa in London. Then one day everything goes topsy turvy when their father leaves them to “go on business” as their mother tells them. They have to leave the home they love and move to the countryside to a much smaller house. They discover a railway track that runs behind their new home. Everyday they wave at the 9.15 train, as that is the train that goes to London, and they believe their father works there.

A lovely story that revolves around the small happy family – always hoping that the father would come back. There is adventure when they discover stones on the track, a house on fire and an accident in the tunnel. It is beautiful, told in simple language and sure to touch your heart.

THE WIND IN THE WILLOWS by Kenneth Grahame

The story opens with Mole who is doing some spring cleaning. He makes friends with a few others who live by the riverside. There is Toad, Ratty and Badger. The four friends have a wonderful time living as they do on the banks of the river. Toad has an obsession. He loves to race in his horse and cart. And then one day his obsession gets him arrested. Portraying typical English humour this is a wonderful story of friendship and how friends make a difference in one’s quality of life. It is the very epitome of British, Gregorian upper middle class and though the characters are completely humanised, they still retain some of their animal characteristics. Be ready to laugh aloud every few pages.

CHARLOTTE’S WEB by E.B. White

A lovely story of friendship and love. An inspiring story for all as it tells us the importance of friends and how we should be treating one another. A tinge of sadness sets in at the very end but then there is still the message of hope.

Charlotte is a spider and with the help of a rat, they manage the save Wilbur the pig from the knife. A must read for every child.

Keywords: children's books