Dear The Complete Sophie Stories,
I have so many fond memories of you. I adored your books when I was a child. My mother bought me your first hardback collection Sophie’s Adventures when I was about 7 years old. Or at least that’s what I’d assume by looking at the publication date. I don’t really remember much about getting you but I do remember that she wrote something to me inside the book. Not a huge essay but I’ll never forget that inscription. I’m not saying the connection with my mother caused me to love your books more but I’ve always linked the two in my mind.
Thinking about you has always been comforting. You’re tied up with nostalgic feelings about my youth and the warm, safe feeling of being home. You basically feel like part of the family to me. You’re the books I remember most fondly from my childhood. There was a period of time when you were my go to book for feeling better. If I woke up from a nightmare then I’d read you. I’d flip through your pages if I couldn’t get to sleep. Every time I was having a rough time I would turn to you. Even when I was far too old to do it.
Looking back I associate myself with Sophie because she’s a stubborn young girl and I’ve always been fairly stubborn. I can’t say I made those links when I first read you but I can definitely see similarities. At the time, we both shared a love of animals and, particularly, horses. I understood why you wanted a dog and why you would love to live on a farm. I understood being the youngest member of your family and being overshadowed by your siblings. It’s inevitable. I don’t think I appreciated how much you taught me when I first read you. But you did. You taught me a lot about being independent and head-strong. About doing what I believed in and sticking to my guns. You’ve probably influenced my life in more way’s than I’d imagine.
But, most importantly, you’ve always been a source of love for me. I always remember you. I always remember how reading you made me feel. I have so much to thank you for but especially for the hours of entertainment you’ve given me. You were the perfect first bookish obsession.