Ladies Camera Club

24 Nov 2007

Secret Collection

Ok, its not a great big secret but I have a penchant for collecting Enid Blyton books. My friend Lynda got me hooked on this hobby years ago and I love bringing back that feeling of idle moments of sheer delight by getting lost in her brilliant books. My favourite was The Magic Faraway Tree amongst The Children of Cherry Tree Farm and Teatime Stories. She wrote over 600 books of which I have 300+. I have rare collections with original dust jackets, old specials and although some of them have some "foxing" to their state, I wouldn't part with them for the world. Collectively they are worth a small fortune but I have been collecting for 7 years and mainly from charity shops and Ebay. i think the most I paid for one was £15 for The Secret Seven in original dust jacket and also being a 1st edition. the least? 10p from a car boot sale and its values at £75!

So what brought this up? Well yest I got a package and in it was a book. There was a tag inside but no name and realised I had been rak'd. Ok, i thought... just who had I shared my secret with? Using my powers of deduction I narrowed it down to Roz. I quizzed her on the phone and knew it was her cos even though she was on the phone, I could tell she was fibbing. MISSY! Thank you so much, I don't have the one you sent me :) What a special gift.

I have all the Secret Sevens and the Famous Fives amongst Amelia Janes, a couple of rare magazines, annuals, Noddy stories and this rare and controversial number, The Three Golliwogs. A shop in a nearing town was raided by police recently to remove Golliwog dolls from the shop window and although the shop was selling for antique and collector purposes, it really did frighten the shop owner. I used to have one as a child because of the Robinsons Jam adverts and his arm looked like a microphone to me - I loved that lil dolly :)

So anyway, those who have any nostalgia stemming from her writings, do share them with me.

31 comments:

Marije said...

Some of this political correctness is going too far! I love my gollies, I have 3 in different sizes :)

amandamagpie said...

What a coincidence, Kirsty, I was talking to my mum about the Enid Blyton books I read as a child earlier this week! I was saying that I would really like to get The Faraway Tree books for my son because I think he would love them as much as I did. The only ones I have seen, though, are the new versions which I believe are badly edited. When I was little, we used to go to Hyde market every Saturday morning and I would buy a new book with my pocket money. I can still remember the joy of reading them and how I got wrapped up in the little imaginary world.

Carol said...

You can still buy golliwogs :), i've bought my sister 3 for xmas LOL (i know, a very random pressie but i destroyed hers when i was little and she cried for a week !)

My 10 year old niece adores enid blyton, we're always on the look out for her books. She would be green with envy at your collection LOL

Kerry said...

I used to love those books too. I bet my mum has a fair few of them in the loft.

Funnily enough my 9 year old picked up The Magic Faraway Tree in the library last week and is slowly but surely reading it.

Craftybanshee said...

I too read many of the Enid Blyton books when I was a child. My favourite's were The Famous Five and the Mallory Towers stories. I used to want to go to a boarding school (the thought of having midnight feasts was a great attraction). What lovely hobby you have. Does Ellie ever look at your Enid Blyton books?

Hebe said...

Yep - I've still got all my Enid Blyton books - Farawy Tree set, all FF and SS, all the school books - Malory Towers and St. Clare's, Secret Island sets, Mystery of books, The ... of Adventure set and more. No first editions or anything, just the ones I had and loved when I was growing up - they have the most memories. Still enjoy reading them today.

Jen said...

Oh I love EB! I didn't like the Faraway Tree as much as I LOVED the Malory Towers books and the Secret Seven & Famous Five. I also adore the Comic Strip "Five go mad in Dorset" kind of thing, with "lashings of ginger beer" LOL.

Jo said...

My 8 year old daughter loves The Faraway Tree and Famous Five - really takes me back, as my late Nanny used to read them to me.

One of my favourite books growing up was the Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark - my 6 year old son reading it at school has sparked an owl obsession with me. I now have owl Rocket Dog shoes as well as ornaments, and all the owly scrapping stash I can find.

Hullabaloo said...

Oh Kirsty what memories these books bring back! I had LOADS of Enid Blyton books when I was younger and was actually talking about one of the ones you show- Tales of long ago - to the kids in my class. I was talking about myths and legends and was explaining that when I was little I had that book and could still remember all the stories even now. When we started reading chapter books to ax when he was about 4 I read him The Magic Faraway Tree cos I remembered it so vividly. He loved it and when they had World Book Day he dressed up as the Saucepan Man! Wish i still had them it was another world! off to reminisce about silly Mr twiddle and hot buttered toast with lashiongs of gingerbeer!

Sam said...

I just loved EB as a child. My dad saw her once at an airport when he was in the army. One of my Mum's friends used to have loads of EB books and I had a red "vanity" case, I used to go to her house and fill it up with EB books and read them,then swap them for others. I loved the Mallory Towers and St Clares books, how I wished I went to boarding school with a tuck box for midnight feasts. Jolly Hockey Sticks!!!

Anonymous said...

Oh - I just loved the Golliwogs stories as a child - but looking back on it now the story has awful overtones . My favourite was the one where the shop keeper can't tell them apart because they all look the same. Oh dear.

Pol

Charlotte said...

I loved the Magic Faraway Tree stories, I always remember the bit when they had made the Wishing Chair invisible, and then used a cream to make it visible again, but didn't have quite enough for the whole chair so it always looked like it had a big dent in it!

amber jane said...

I still have my old Secret Sevens - which were originally my Dad's copies and they are still as loved today.And the Magic Faraway tree is a fab book - my girls love it :D

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful collection! I loved Enid Blyton as a child, and am reading the Faraway Tree and Wishing Chair books to my sons at the moment. They are still magical; she had a fabulous imagination, even although she is not considered politically correct in this strange age we live in! There is a marvellous second hand book shop in Alnwick, which has lots of lovely old books.
Lynn

tjc designs Blog said...

OMG!! The faraway Tree and the enchanted wood are my favs!!! Love moonface and the saucepan man etc.... ohhh going to have to read it again now!

Sinead said...

Oh, what memories! I remember getting those books when we were in Ireland on holiday (home from the US, where I moved when I was 3...we went back every summer until we were old enough that it cost the full adult fare each). I'm sure that I probably read some of them over here in the US, as well, but my mom used to buy me one or two for the summer when we'd go home. I had the Three Gollywogs, too...no clue where it is now. Probably in my Granny's house! :) Thanks for the lovely memories today! and yay about your RAK!

Brook said...

What an awsome collection. I have never even heard of her! I feel deprived! I will have to find out more about her! How lucky you are to have great friends that look out for you!

Roz said...

You are so very welcome, I just had to send you something after you sent me that my amazing RAK and made me cry.

Andrea said...

Oh Lordy - I had hundreds! My favourite and the one that I still have up on the shelf in my workshop is the Adventures of Pip. I learned to read with this book, every Sunday night I would curl up on my Daddy's knee and read a chapter to him and then he would date the chapter heading on the contents page so now about 26 years later I have a record of when I learned to read.

Moonraker said...

Great collection, Kirstie. Sorry to hear about the raid on golliwogs, they seem to be making quite a comeback in the UK. You might like to look in at the Enid Blyton Society website, there's a great forum with a band of great people who post regularly.
www.enidblytonsociety.co.uk

Mika said...

I love Enid.... and ofcourse your blog. Hope to see you arround. Mika
www.mikascrap.typepad.com

Nick said...

aw this post brought back some memories. I loved enid blyton as a child, the farawy tree was one of my favourites too
Not sure who wrote them but I also loved Milly Molly Mandy, remember her?

Ming said...

Just came across your blog randomly - anyway, I'm a great Blyton fan. I don't have much over here in Bangladesh, but what is available are there on my bookcase! Pity I don't have any first editions except for The Boy Who Came Back, all my ones are reprints by Armada or perhaps the new paperbacks. Wouldn't I love to have a collection like yours! Mine is just 150+ *sigh* By the way, have you seen these sites? The Enid Blyton Society and EnidBlyton.net - they're two must see sites for any Blyton fan. :-)

D@nielle said...

oooh I have the golliwog one too, one of the rare things I have from my childhood. So nice to have such a special colleciton !

nita said...

It's amazing the impact of books have on us as children. Every Saturday, my parents would pack us up and take us to the city (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada)and we'd choose another round of books at the Frances Morrison library to get us through another week. Enid Blyton was definitely a favorite author. Then, when my kids were small (mid 90's) we often watched the always charming Noddy on CBC. Sweet memories.

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