Ana Porta’s “Books That Shaped You” At Ages 5-10-15-20

Annie KennedyBooks, Inside WITS

Inspired by Pitchfork’s 5-10-15-20 feature, we asked the WITS staff to talk about the books that shaped them as they grew up. From Kindergarten favorites to the novels that got us through college, we’re excited to take this walk down memory lane, five years at a time with Program Coordinator, Ana Porta.

Ana Porta, Program Coordinator
5 – Dr. Seuss’ What Was I Scared Of?

I remember reading this book over and over to my sisters as a kid. I loved how all the pages were the same color, aside from the pair of pale green pants with nobody inside! I really appreciate the lesson of being brave even when you are scared.

10 – Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events series

This series transported me to another world, and upon discovering The Bad Beginning, I quickly devoured the entire series. The characters, twists, and adventures in these stories kept me coming back for more, and they remain some of my favorite books from childhood.

15 – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s The Little Prince

I read this as a child with my dad, and in high school, I read it in French. I loved experiencing this book in its original language and rediscovering my love for the story. The themes of truth, human nature, and love are beautifully explored in this book, and I love that it can be enjoyed by people of all ages!

20 – Paul Murray’s Skippy Dies

A coming of age story with both tragic and comedic themes, this book remains one of my favorites. With endearing characters and an unraveling mystery, it is an exploration of the joy and pain of adolescence.