Long before hormones, mortgages and real life kicked in, our first loves as children were the books we buried our noses in.
Whether it was passing the time on a rainy day or crawling into a quiet space to read uninterrupted because you simply HAD to keep reading, these books opened up worlds upon worlds, filled with the most amazing people and made the mundane seem utterly fantastical.
To celebrate one of our favourite, most beloved authors Roald Dahl, we asked our HuffPost editors, Facebook users and Twitter followers to name the books that lit up their world as a child and carried them through to adulthood.
Tell us your favourites in the comments below:
Danny the Champion of the World, Roald Dahl
Style writer Daisy May Sitch: "Is SO me in my not-leaving-the-library phase. Ever. I loved this novel and its emotive description! "It was all very boys in the wild and makes me think of pheasants and conkers and big Autumn leaves."
The Phantom Tollbooth, Norton Juster
Blogs editor Jody Thompson says: "It's so fantastically witty, wordy and clever it just struck a chord with my love of language even then. It totally stands the test of time and holds up to being read as an adult too (as I do every year)."
The Magic Faraway Tree, Enid Blyton
"No contest," says Twitter user <a href="http://www.twitter.com/kittyvine" target="_blank">@kittyvine</a>. Easily the resounding winner, by the sheer number of people who voted for this, Enid Blyton's tale charts the antics of Jo, Bessie and Fanny (stop laughing in the back). Lifestyle's Brogan Driscoll says: "I loved these books for so many reasons: the characters - especially Moonface and The Saucepan Man; the different lands at the top of the tree - I re-read the chapter about the upside down land about thousand times. "I read them first when I was really young and again and again as I got older, I got something new out of them each time. Ah, nostalgia."
Fantastic Mr Fox, Roald Dahl
News reporter Chris York says: "I read it cover to cover every night for about a month."
Goodnight Mr Tom, Michelle Magorian
Entertainment assistant editor Sarah Dean says: "It showed me what life was like for a child in war time, something I was interested in after hearing my grandad had also been evacuated to the countryside from London in WW2. "It was such a heartwarming story and I loved seeing how Mr Tom and Willie changed once they began to understand it each other."
What Katy Did, Susan Coolidge
Nominated by Facebook user Jo Sloan, What Katy Did may have a 19th-century heroine, but she was WAY ahead of her time. Tomboy Katy scales fences and gets up to all shenanigans (yes, we said shenanigans). With a ribbon in her hair too.
Gulliver's Travels, Jonathan Swift
The tale of Lemuel Gulliver who visits the land of giants, talking horses and tiny Lilliputs is a firm favourite. Facebook user Natalie Moran says: "I was and still am quite short so it was nice to find a place where everyone was smaller than me. Even if it was imaginary!"
The Famous Five, Enid Blyton
Entertainment Editor Caroline Frost was torn between Blyton's Magic Faraway Tree and The Famous Five. She adds: "I used to dream about The Faraway Tree, Malory Towers also a comfort food for all occasions, and Five Go To Kirrin Island."
Milly Molly Mandy, Joyce Lankester-Brisley
Briony Spandler, Facebook user says: "Five Go To - wherever they went..!! Posh kids on hols from boarding school fascinated me! "BUT all time fave - Milly Molly Mandy ESPECIALLY Joyce Lankester-Brisley's superb illustrations - still pour over them now and I'm 47!"
Owl Babies, Martin Waddell
Annie Harris<a href="http://www.twitter.com/ubermagee" target="_blank"> @ubermagee</a> says her favourite book was Owl Babies because she "wanted an extra brother or sister so we could be three like the owl babies! I loved it because my Mum used to put on different voices for all of the owl babies!"
Wynken, Blynken and Nod, Eugene Field
Jen <a href="http://www.twitter.com/@Gobabyapp" target="_blank">@Gobabyapp</a> says: "Wynken, Blynken and Nod by Eugene Field is a lovely story, read to me as a toddler to make me sleep."
Little House on the Prairiie, Laura Ingalls Wilder.
Amalie <a href="http://www.twitter.com/amaliecraig" target="_blank">@amaliecraig</a> says: "Log cabins & creeks - better than suburban Sussex."
Revolting Rhymes, Roald Dahl
MyDaily's Ellen Stewart says: "All of Roald Dahl's Revolting Rhymes were excellent. "Cautionary tales which taught me I should never adopt an ant eater because it would eat my aunt, pigs would realise their slaughter house destiny and eat farmers and that crocky wock the crocodile would then come and eat me. Essentially no one was safe from being eaten."
The Neverending Story, Michael Ende
"This was my favourite book as a child apart from The Magic Faraway Tree," says Lifestyle editor Poorna Bell, "so it killed me when they came out with the film because the majority of kids my age only watched the movie and didn't read the book. I was utterly immersed when I read it. Facebook user Helena Agustí Gómez says:"It was just so full of imagination!" and Twitter user <a href="http://www.twitter.com/@StevehHenderson" target="_blank">@StevehHenderson</a> says it"reminds me of a princess, falling in love with a kid! SCORE!"
The Mennyms, Sylvia Waugh
Facebook user Paula Jeffs calls this book 'amazing' and for those who aren't familiar with it, it's a series of books about children's rag dolls that come alive. (In a non-Chucky the doll monster kind of way).
Pookie The Rabbit, Ivy E Wallace
Facebook user Carol Courtney says: "Gorgeous artwork. I still have the copy of Pookie The Rabbit With Wings that I won in an art competition when I was five years old. I'm 54..."
The Twits, Roald Dahl
Karo Davis nominates The Twits by Roald Dahl, which is about two awful people, Mr and Mrs Twit who keep a host of ill-treated monkeys called the Muggle-Wumps.
The Children Of Cherry Tree Farm, Enid Blyton
On Facebook, Moira Elizabeth Jamieson suggested The Children Of Cherry Tree Farm, which is about wildlife (taught to the children by 'wild man' Tammylan) and follows the adventures of Rory, Sheila, Benjy and Penny. FB user Emma Russell-Bennett adds that her favourite books were "anything by Enid Blyton! They became even more special when my mum (who was very interested in genealogy) told me that one of my relatives illustrated some EB books."
Black Beauty, Anna Sewell
The only book that Anna Sewell published is told as a memoir from a horse's point of view. Black Beauty had a lot of moral messages about how to treat animals. Suggested by Facebook user Wendy A Roberts.
The Rats Of Nimh, Robert O'Brien
UK news editor Paul Vale says: "Looking back, I’d say I liked it because of the themes of emancipation, scientific advancement and the creation of an alternative society. However, at the time I think I just liked talking mice."
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