When Lucy Mangan was little, stories were everything. They opened up new worlds and cast light on all the complexities she encountered in this one. No wonder she only left the house for her weekly trip to the library or to spend her pocket money on amassing her own at home. In this book, Lucy revisits her childhood reading with wit, love and gratitude. She relives our best-beloved books, their extraordinary creators, and looks at the thousand subtle ways they shape our lives. She also disinters a few forgotten treasures to inspire the next generation of bookworms and set them on their way. Lucy brings the favourite characters of our collective childhoods back to life – prompting endless re-readings, rediscoveries, and, inevitably, fierce debate – and brilliantly uses them to tell her own story, that of a born, and unrepentant, bookworm.