The Enid Blyton Society
Round the Year with Enid Blyton - Autumn Book
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Book Details...

First edition: 1934
Publisher: Evans Brothers
Illustrator: Enid Blyton and Kathleen Nixon
Category: Round the Year with Enid Blyton
Genre: Nature
Type: Courses and Encyclopaedias

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Review by Julie Heginbotham

I hadn't realized that Enid Blyton had written non-fiction, educational books, until I joined the Society and looked amongst all the book listings. Intrigued as how Enid would set about writing these books, I kept my eye on EBAY and found this book to add to my collection. As I opened the first page there was a letter from Enid to all those who were about to read, with her full address on the top right corner of the page. It began:-

Dear Boys and Girls,
I wish you could come with me and walk over the hills, through the fields and down by the river, finding a hundred exciting or beautiful things by the way. I should like to take you fishing in the ponds, and fill your jars with snails and tadpoles. I should like to help you to make a bird table, or to prepare a splendid aquarium. I should like to give you a garden of your own and show you how to make it a place of bight colours and sweet scents...and so it goes on, signed with Enid's famous signature.

What a lovely way to introduce an educational book and to entice the reader inside its pages, knowing that Enid delighted in sharing with the reader all she knew about nature. This book is a wonderful insight to Enid's teaching capabilities, as she takes you on a learning journey into the land of nature, rather than secret passages of mystery and adventure.

I could almost imagine her young pupils sitting looking up at their teacher, attentively listening to every word put into simple terms for the youngest listener to understand. Every page in this book Enid describes and explains the subject matter with care and detail and at the end of every chapter is a small list titled 'Things To Do'. Here Enid numbers each assignment for the reader to do either by themselves or in the class room with their teacher.

All the chosen subjects in this book are fascinating to read, one that I particularly liked was the chapter called, 'All About Shadows'. We all know about shadows and don't really pay to much attention to them if honest, but Enid writes with interest and makes you more aware of something we all take for granted. She writes, "How are shadows made? Think for a minute and then try to say in a few words what a shadow really is. It is more difficult than you thought it would be, isn't it?"

At the end of this chapter she writes: "Shadows are often beautiful...Trees cast purple shadows in the hot noonday sun, deep and glowing. Shadows on the white snow are blue." I paint in watercolours and I do paint my shadows purple, and for a snow scene the shadows I paint in are blue. She is so right.

In another chapter titled 'Spiders And Their Ways', I found myself also fascinated in this chapter. And I have to confess I do not like spiders, but learned so much I never knew. I still wouldn't go near a spider but I do know a lot more about them now.

This is a really lovely interesting book and very well written, and Iím glad to have found it to add to my collection. If I manage to find the other three, for Summer, Spring and Winter, I'll be adding them to the collection also.