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Telling tales: famous Scots reveal their favourite childhood stories for World Book Day

Famous Scots have unveiled their favourite childhood tales ahead of World Book Day.

Books by Beatrix Potter, AA Milne and Enid Blyton proved popular with Scots celebrities including Motherwell manager Stuart McCall and author Stuart MacBride.

Other favourites included Rupert the Bear, The Dandy, The Beano and Rudyard Kipling.

Alexander McCall Smith said: "As a young boy I very much enjoyed Rudyard Kipling's Rikki Tikki Tavi - the tale of a mongoose who saves the life of his young owner. I read it so many times that I knew it virtually off by heart!"

Ian Rankin said: "My favourite books as a child were the comic-book annuals I got at Christmas - the Dandy, Beano, Broons, Oor Wullie, Victor, Lion, and so on. I would read them from cover to cover, then start at the beginning again!

"As a kid, no one introduced me to Beatrix Potter or Dr Seuss. I had Enid Blyton books and a whole stack of Ladybird books. But when I became a parent, I did discover Dr Seuss. I remember reading Green Eggs and Ham to my son - and twenty years later probably still know it word for word!"

Stuart MacBride said: "The very first book I can remember reading is AA Milne's, The House at Pooh Corner, and it remains a favourite today. It perfectly captures the magic of Christopher Robin's imaginary world, and who couldn't love Pooh bear? Go back and read it again -- there's room for a little Hundred Acre Wood inside us all."

Stuart McCall said: "My favourite book as a child was Enid Blyton's Famous Five and my kids always loved when we read Sam McBratney's Guess How Much I Love You together"

Playwright and artist John Byrne said: "I vividly remember a big book of Gulliver's Travels, mainly because it was illustrated by a wonderful artist who went under the 'nom de pinceau' on Ionicus - the image of Gulliver on the ground and having strands of his long hair pegged to the ground by the tiny Lilliputians has remained with me for sixty odd years.

"Other memorable books were the Rupert annuals which I avidly devoured at my Aunt Helen's house in Hillington (which, compared to our own house in Ferguslie Park was like Mayfair!) - I used to hold them up to my face and drink in their wonderful spell and make myself quite drunk with the pleasure of inhaling all the wonderful characters therein - Rupert himself, the Professor, the little Chinese girl, et al.

"Another very memorable book was one which I had seen a pal with at our Lady of Lourdes Primary School in Cardonald - it was an illustrated version of Oliver Twist and I wished with all my might that I would get it for Christmas - and, lo and behold, I did! Courtesy of my Aunt Kay, my mother's 'glamorous' younger sister - I must have been nine or ten at the time. The most magical Christmas ever!"

To mark World Book Day on Thursday, March 6 PlayTalkRead, the Scottish Government's Early Years initiative, has also unveiled Scotland's top ten favourite children's book.

The list was created following a survey of parents, carers and children, with Julia Donaldson's The Gruffalo scooping the top slot, followed by Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell in second.

Here's the full list

1 The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson

2 Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell

3 The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

4 We're Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen

5 Room on a Broom by Julia Donaldson

6 That's Not My... books by Fiona Watt

7 Hairy Maclary books, Dame Lynley Dodd

8 Stick Man, Julia Donaldson

9 What the Ladybird Heard, Julia Donaldson

10 The Snail and the Whale, Julia Donaldson

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