I first saw Betsy at A Fuse #8 Production do it. (She was inspired by this post at Ten Block Walk.) Then Melissa at Book Nut chimed in. And I'm not to be outdone.
From Betsy's post:
The Premise: You have a time machine. In this time machine you may take seven books. Your mission is to visit yourself, in the past, and to give yourself the books you wish you would have read as a kid. They can be old books or new books, it doesn't matter. But they must be books you've run across as an adult, loved, and you know would have appealed to (or been good for) little you.
Ohhh, how I would have loved Chickens to the Rescue by John Himmelman. When we were wee, my brother and I had a thing about poring over illustrations looking at details. (Anyone else spend happy evenings looking for Lowly Worm and gold bug in the Richard Scarry books??) I would have loved searching for the egg on each page and noticing all the details of all the crazy chickens in each spread.
And I would have laughed my little head off at Leonardo the Terrible Monster by Mo Willems. You know, the spread where Sam explains exactly why he's crying? Yeah. 'Nuf said.
Of course, I loved the Ramona books. I have fond memories of reading them over and over. (Ramona and Her Father was my favorite, probably because I owned it and could read it over and over whenever I wanted!) I would have loved Clementine by Sara Pennypacker. She's funny and unique and I think I would have identified with her greatly.
So, besides the massively popular R.L. Stine and Christopher Pike books I was reading at this age, in the fifth grade I discovered tear-jerkers. And in middle school it was all about the Lurlene MacDaniel. I'd hand 11-year-old me Ways to Live Forever by Sally Nichols in a heartbeat. And I would have eaten it up with a spoon.
Age 13-15 (Oh, the band blazer....)
I was all into horror and thrillers at this age. My favorite book when I was thirteen was Christopher Pike's adult novel The Season of Passage (I still have my mass market copy, spine taped together, signed by all my friends whom I made read it).
I would have been so into The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, I can't even tell you. What's more, I would have been convinced that Panem was going to happen to America and that Suzanne Collins was some sort of prophetic genius trying to warn us.
And I will be completely honest: I would have been so into Twilight, too. I probably would have been on Team Edward. I had a thing for vampires. *shudder*
I kind of skipped over YA (not counting Christopher Pike and LJ Smith) and headed straight to adult books. When I was a senior in high school I got my first job at Barnes & Noble and considered myself too old for YA. But I am reasonably sure that I would have not only picked up but devoured Bog Child by Siobhan Dowd. It's a book that might not appeal to most teens, but after seeing the movie Some Mothers Sons at some point in high school, I had a fascination with The Troubles and Bog Child would have been right up my alley.
And that's what I'd give myself if only I had a time machine. What about you??