Enid Blyton once upon a time #AtoZChallenge

A to Z Challenge B for Blyton

blytonEnid Blyton was my favourite author as a child. It was in a time when Golliwogs were not taboo in books and over zealous editors weren’t trying to change Blyton’s words into something that the modern generation would understand. ‘Peculiar’ is apparently very old school, ‘Weird’ is cool! I was probably one of the last generation of readers who read the books with their original text.

I really feel strongly about updating books to reflect a generation because books are our window into the past. Blyton wrote of her times when caning was legal and children played in the sun. They went camping, and parents and teachers were allowed to discipline children. I think it is as important for children to know about the past, as it is the present and there are enough children’s fiction writers these days.

However what really shocked me was the film Enid, where Blyton was portrayed by Helena Bonham Carter. If the story is really true to her life, then it is amazing how a troubled person like her could produce best-selling, sensitive and well written children’s books! Her relationship with her own children were appalling but you would think she was an ideal mother from her books. The mother who was so in tune with her children’s needs, desires and fantasies, that she could write books about them. In reality she was just like one of the troubled girls in her books trapped in a woman’s life. Whatever she wrote and generations of children have enjoyed were idyllic fantasies she wished she had lived in.

Helena Bonham Carter was superb as always and won a BAFTA for her performance. Going by her portrayal I pity the author and cherish my unadulterated copies of Enid Blyton books even more. They are not just a window into a bygone era any more but a  person’s unfulfilled dreams and desires.

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9 thoughts on “Enid Blyton once upon a time #AtoZChallenge

  1. Cecilia

    I am a huge fan of Enid Blyton’s stories. I haven’t seen the film but I did know of her troubled relationships with her own children. I have some original Noddy books and treasure them and not one PC nasty is allowed to touch them. I don’t recall many parents in the stories though, an Uncle in the famous five a few ‘masters’ and railway workers. What I treasured was the children going off on adventures and getting themselves into sticky situations and then having to find a way out of them so they could go find a friendly farmer to give them lovely lunches. My favourites were the enchanted woods and Mr Galliano’s circus. I believe that children can learn about the past from original works. I talk to my children about ‘toyland’ which was full of toys, including golliwogs and noddy dolls, skittles that were meant to be knocked over and golden haired dollies. We can learn so much about the changes in the world from the toys the children had in each era. Okay I am slipping into an essay here sorry and Thank you.

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    1. driftingtraveller Post author

      Hi Cecilia, I love comments which are essays and this Enid Blyton debate could go on and on. The parents I remember from Enid Blyton books are Uncle Quentin from Famous Five, Pip’s mother from the Five Find-outers and Philip and Dinah’s mother from the Barney ‘R’ mysteries. All of them were disciplinarian parents! Mr Galliano’s circus was also one of my favourites and I still like to look up a tall tree to find the door to Faraway land!

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    1. driftingtraveller Post author

      Hahaha Louise Smith, clearly you and I are very peculiar 😉 the very idea of demoting words from the dictionary is peculiar because people are constantly coining new words. Thanks for reading!

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