Fiona’s six favourite Enid Blyton Books


I was rather stuck for a post this week as I didn’t want to subject you all to Noddy too many weeks in a row. This post was Stef’s idea as I hadn’t thought of anything myself and she assures me that she will do a post of her own at some point.

I’m actually pretty terrible at picking favourites (just think back to my three favourite characters post…). Ask me my favourite book and I’ll look horrified. I can’t even pick a favourite song (though I do have a favourite band)… and I’m just as bad with TV shows and movies. If you narrow it down to favourites from a particular author or genre I can sometimes come up with something, though.

So I have picked six, and I considered ranking them 6 to 1 but I think everyone knows what would come in at number one. With that in mind; in no particular order…


FIVE GO TO SMUGGLER’S TOP

This is my favourite Famous Five book, my favourite Enid Blyton book and one of my all time favourite books. I’m not sure I can explain why, it just has always been my favourite. I’ve always enjoyed the scene at the start with Julian waking up the sleeping household to warn them about the falling ash tree, and Smuggler’s Top has secret passages galore which I love. Block is a sinister (and clever) baddie and some combination of all those factors just puts this one at the top for me.

Julian warns everyone about the falling ash tree in "Five Go to Smuggler's Top" illustrated by Eileen Soper.

Julian warns everyone about the falling ash tree in “Five Go to Smuggler’s Top” illustrated by Eileen Soper.


THE CIRCUS OF ADVENTURE

My favourite title from the Adventure Series. Again, if you put it under the microscope it’s hard to identify exactly what makes it my favourite. I just love Kiki vs Gussy in the early chapters and then Jack insinuating himself into the circus to rescue the others. Then there’s that brilliant scene with Philip taming the bears, plus all the fun of disguising Gussy and the others as circus-folk to escape.

The Circus of Adventure without Dustjacket

Philip and the bears on the board of The Circus of Adventure


FIVE ON A HIKE TOGETHER

Another Famous Five title, but I can have 2 out of 21, cant I? I love this one for the thrill of an escaped convict and secret messages in the night. Two Trees, Gloomy Water, Saucy Jane, and Maggie knows as well! Treasure hunting at its finest.

Dick receiving Nailer's message in Five on a Hike Together

Dick receiving Nailer’s message in Five on a Hike Together


SECOND FORM AT MALORY TOWERS

I tend to like Malory Towers as a whole rather than adoring any individual book but I do have a soft spot for the second form in particular. It introduces Belinda, who along with Irene, is a great source of mirth. Plus it contains what has to be the most exciting scene from any Malory Towers book – Daphne rescuing Mary-Lou from the cliff top in a storm.

Second Form at Malory Towers dust jacket 1957 reprint by Lilian Buchanan

Daphne and Mary-Lou on the cover of Second Form at Malory Towers


HOLLOW TREE HOUSE

This was one I read over and over as a child. I loved the idea of making a house in the woods (I was one of those girls who was always playing ‘house’ and ‘mother’ in whatever tent I could rig up or shed I could get into) and my favourite parts of this book are actually the packing, moving and making of their new home.

Armada Paperback of "Hollow Tree House" cover uncredited.

The Armada paperback I had as a child.


THOSE DREADFUL CHILDREN

I also read this time and time again as a child. I know the title is meant to be ambiguous – we aren’t meant to know which set of children truly are the “dreadful” ones. As a child though, I always assumed it referred to the Taggertys as they were wild and grubby. It’s only as an adult that I can see that the prissy, sensitive Carletons are just as dreadful, just in  different way. Anyway, I always loved this story of two sets of children learning to get along despite their differences.

Armada paperback of "Those Dreadful Children", cover uncredited

Armada paperback I had as a child.

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8 Responses to Fiona’s six favourite Enid Blyton Books

  1. The Fact says:

    love the post, here’s an idea could you rank all of the famous five books from best to worst in your opinion and why you like them or dislike them.

    Like

  2. Francis says:

    ‘Famous Five’ and ‘Adventure’ series would dominate my list ‘Mountain’, ‘Valley’, ‘Sea’, ‘Castle’, ‘Island’ and the first 12 ‘Famous Five’ books + ‘Five go to Billycock Hill’.
    Enjoyed your list, Fiona.
    Francis

    Like

  3. Avinash Machado says:

    Not even one Five Foundouter book?

    Like

  4. bookworm659 says:

    Loving the list put up here. Makes me want to reach into my old collection of the books and fish these out again.

    Like

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