The 'What Katy Did' trilogy was first published in the late 1800s, but was there ever such a modern girl as wild, irrepressible Katy? What makes this novel so groundbreaking is Coolidge's realistic portrait of a childhood, with the high spirits, temper tantrums and naughtiness you'd expect to see in any 'normal' child. Coolidge is not interested in sermonising and morals, and her characters aren't in a continual quest for perfection; she's interested in the people, their imperfections, a family and its dynamics. Which is why these books are so enjoyable to a modern audience, and why they deserve to be championed.This was one of my favourite books as a child. The children felt real enough to touch, and I fell head over heels in love with Katy. It's a book with an unstoppable heart - Katherine RundellOne of my all-time favourite books . . . It's a wonderful book, very easy to read, even though it was published in the 19th century. It's a very lively funny story - Jacqueline WilsonKaty speaks with a charm and directness that remains as fresh as when it was written - Amanda CraigThis collection of the best in children's literature, curated by Virago, will be coveted by children and adults alike. These are timeless tales with beautiful covers, that will be treasured and shared across the generations. Some titles you will already know; some will be new to you, but there are stories for everyone to love, whatever your age. Our list includes Nina Bawden (Carrie's War, The Peppermint Pig), Rumer Godden (The Dark Horse, An Episode of Sparrows), Joan Aiken (The Serial Garden, The Gift Giving) E. Nesbit (The Psammead Trilogy, The Bastable Trilogy, The Railway Children), Frances Hodgson Burnett (The Little Princess,The Secret Garden) and Susan Coolidge (The What Katy Did Trilogy). Discover Virago Children's Classics.