Enid Blyton once stated she was not interested in criticism from anyone over the age of twelve. How very Enid of her. I’m quite sure she would be somewhat baffled at the barrage of criticism thrown at her books since her death. Enid Blyton always thought as a child, clearly as a child of her era, but a child nonetheless.
I was looking through my Blyton bookcase the other day for some Rosemary Manning paperbacks I had tucked in there. It has not moved house with us yet, and I am in the process of covering all the fragile jackets in mylar, so it is somewhat of a mess at the moment. I came across my collection of various printings of The Three Golliwogs and took one out to have a peek.
I am (obviously) a huge Harry Potter fan They are some of my favourite books of all time, and they reside on my “shelf of honour”, the books that must be re-read each year. I am sure just as many other fans had the same trepidation I had when they first announced the movies.
I was sorting through my many spares of Harry Potter books the other day (the shelves on my ‘good’ bookcase are starting to bow) as I had just purchased some to sell. I had some US editions in hardcover. While I don’t mind the US editions I was never a huge fan of the artwork. I also hate the fact they changed the text in them, but that’s another rant.
I have two American collectors editions, which are fantastic, leather, super-bound, gorgeous pictures including an insert facsimile of an orginal J.K Rowling drawing of the Harry Potter gang. Those, of course, stay. Also, why didn’t they print them all? Seriously. The British deluxe editions pale in comparison.
“Once upon a time – one hundred years ago, and half as many years again – there lived a girl called Clair-de-Lune, who could not speak”
So we meet our heroine, Clair-de-Lune, who lives at the top of a very tall, very narrow, very old building with her Grandmother, Madame Nuit. Clair-de-Lune has not spoken a word since the night her mother, the great ballerina La Lune, died onstage…
“at the end of a tragic and beautiful ballet about swans, who, it is said, are mute until the very last moments of their lives, when they give forth the most lovely of all songs”
It might have been 1987, perhaps a shade before, but I will stick to “when I was eleven years old” (and that is quite a stretch in memory) when I first saw Cluny the Scourge. On my oldest friend’s bookshelf, (she is still around and sharing books with me) sat a paperback copy of Redwall. A 1986 copy to be exact, with the original British cover illustrated by Pete Lyon. She was quite excited when she purchased it, as she had been reading her cousin’s copy on the weekends when visiting, and now she had one of her own. I was promised a loan of this marvelous book as soon as she had finished, and I was certainly intrigued, as she had filled me with tales of Abbeys and Mice and dastardly Sea Rats. I was convinced I had never read anything like it before and therefore it must be the greatest book written since any of my Enid Blytons. And then there was the superb illustration of Cluny on the cover, and surely he must be the greatest villain any mouse had to overcome.
I found the Guardians of Ga’Hoole books about four years ago, well the first one, on the bargain table in a country book shop. They hadn’t taken off here, and I managed to find the rest (eight at the time) in the US and got them shipped here.
I think most (if not all) devoted Harry Potter fans have suffered ‘Post-Potter-Depression’.
One you devoured your latest Potter in short order you were left with a feeling of loss. There was, after all, yet another year (or three) to go until your next adventure. Then there was the pre-release hype, the endless online discussions and speculation, the anticipation of once again diving into the world of Hogwarts and seeing your heroes triumph against adversity.