The Enid Blyton Society
The Green Goblin Book (Feefo, Tuppeny and Jinks)
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Book Details...

First edition: 1935
Publisher: George Newnes
Illustrator: Gordon Robinson
Category: One-off Novels
Genre: Fantasy
Type: Novels/Novelettes

On This Page...

Reprint Covers
Artwork
Review by Terry Gustafson
Further Illustrations

Reprints


Under dustwrapper from the 1st edition, illustrated by Ian Hassall



Cloth boards from the first edition



Frontis from the 1st edition, illustrated by Gordon Robinson



Wraparound dustwrapper from the 1951 edition, illustrated by Norman Meredith



Endpapers from the 1951 edition, illustrated by Norman Meredith



Frontis from the 1951 edition, illustrated by Norman Meredith
Tuppeny is a small plump Green Goblin and one sunny afternoon we find him sitting on a stile sobbing so loudly that he attracts the attention of a taller goblin who wants to know what's going on. Tuppeny explains to him that he's been kicked out of his cave in the green hills because he doesn't go all that much for digging in cold dark caverns searching for precious stones — he likes to work hard in the garden making the flowers grow and listening to the birds singing. His ex-friends consider that to be slacking so he had to go.

The tall goblin introduces himself as Feefo and suggests they seek their fortunes together and that's the start of their relationship which extends to another when they're crossing a field. They see a goblin coming towards them walking on his hands with his hat on his feet and when he nears Tuppeny and Feefo he rights himself and tells them his name is Jinks. He carries a basket on his back which opens out into a tray that contains several items including a white mouse which seems to be a pet. Jinks is a pedlar with a cheery, smiling face, long, supple limbs and plenty of experience at seeking fortunes because he's done it for years and never found even the tail-end of one. He's got an idea though — why don't they set up shop together and supply unusual things? Anything strange, marvellous or impossible will be found for those who want them whether they are fairies, witches, goblins or elves. What do you reckon?

Feefo's doubtful but Jinks assures him that he's a very clever chap so the deal is struck and the three of them become pals. At this stage it might be helpful to point out the little traits they possess: Jinks sometimes walks on his hands and can even join his arms and legs together and roll down a hill like a ball in fact you never know what he's going to do next. Tuppeny enjoys singing but I can't see any evidence that he's good at it because no one seems to want to listen to him and his favourite expression when he's amazed at something is, "Jumping beetles!" Feefo follows the tradition of several E.B. characters by displaying a talent for making strange noises or perhaps the other characters followed Feefo because the book goes back to 1935. He can imitate literally anything — he can croak like a frog, cluck like a hen, snore like a hedgehog, rattle like twenty dustbin lids, sound like a hippopotamus with toothache or even make a noise like a dozen worms having a tea-party!

The Goblins search out an ideal cottage from which to set up shop and here's how Enid Blyton describes it:

"It was a dear little place with a thatched roof, a curly chimney and a garden full of hollyhocks, sweet williams, pansies, white daisies, lavender and stocks. It smelt sweet, it looked sweet and it was sweet!"

The name's on the gate — Hollyhock Cottage. They move in, give the place a coat of paint, install furniture and shove a sign up "We suppply anything in the world for witches, fairies, elves or nomes" (Feefo's spelling, not mine). They settle in and it's not long before their first customer arrives ... down the chimney for some reason or another. It's the Windy Wizard and he is prepared to offer a sack of gold pieces to the goblins if they retrieve a Golden Bucket that Witch Grumble stole from him a hundred years ago.

"Surely it isn't worth a whole sack of gold" says Jinks.

Apparently this one is because it's really a glorified rubbish-bin. Any rubbish you have (and a lot is created when magic spells are formed) can be disposed of instantly by just throwing it in. Tuppeny, the smallest, is a little apprehensive about setting off to find a witch but Jinks assures him that he'll be well looked after and it's all settled. This book is another vehicle for the author to use the limits of her imagination so it's not all that surprising to find Tuppeny, Feefo and Jinks having to take a bus to the Rushing River which flows down to the Dancing Sea and that will lead them to Witch's Hill. There's a rather hair-raising ride on the river and Tuppeny almost falls in. Feefo experiences sea-sickness when they're sailing the briny which Jinks tries to counteract initially with the wrong pills that cause poor Feefo to become giant-like and a danger to the stability of the boat. Other pills are produced by Jinks who gets them from his extraordinary basket which seems to contain anything he needs and Feefo's sickness is treated properly.

Because Tuppeny is such a nice, fat, jolly little fellow he's chosen to do the dirty work. With a plan that borrows a trick from the Aladdin tales, Tuppeny is sent into the Witch's castle with a bucket from Jinks' back-pack to try and negotiate a bucket-swap. The plan doesn't work but at least Tuppeny manages to get a glimpse of the Golden Bucket which is hanging in the scullery. He sneaks back into the castle and grabs it but the witch discovers what's happening and pursues the poor little goblin. He races away down the castle steps and accidentally falls into the bucket which cannot discriminate between genuine rubbish and that which is not so genuine. Tuppeny's gone! Jinks grabs the bucket and he and Feefo dash away to the boat. This is definitely the stuff of dreams because the boat will be towed back from whence it came by an enormous white swan but the Witch uses her magic powers to enchant the Dancing Sea which rears up in great waves and threatens to swamp the little vessel. How can they escape? Will they ever see little Tuppeny again? It seems pretty unlikely because on consulting the wizard when he comes for his bucket (yes, they did manage to get back to Hollyhock Cottage) they find that Tuppeny would be in the great Cave of the Hoo-Moo-Loos!! Another thrilling adventure is imminent — they will need to go to the end of the rainbow, find a toadstool with six red spots underneath and let it take them down to the caves where they will confront King Tick-Tock so called because he's into clocks in such a big way that he has hundreds of them all around the place!

The adventurous Peter, Mollie and Chinky are being rivaled in this book because the Land of Hoo-Moo-Loos which is deep down in a cave has to be visited and what strange creatures inhabit the place. They resemble balls but when you get up close a head, arms, and legs spring out and there you have a Hoo-Moo-Loo! There are dozens of them moving about by rolling all over the place and it's not long before they surround the goblins and march them off to their King. The eccentric Potentate however has a more pressing problem than having to deal with green goblins and it provides an opportunity to make a bargain with him in return for access to poor Tuppeny. Feefo uses his remarkable noise-making ability to fool the King and then they are taken to the Rubbish Cave where Tuppeny is residing and singing a very doleful song -
"I certainly would never choose
To make a friend of Hoo-Moo-Loos
No, no, no!
Each one is just a rolling ball,
I do not like the Hoos at all
No, no, NO!"
The goblins are reunited and they manage to escape by the skin of their teeth from the army of rolling Hoo-Moo-Loos who are very angry because the time allotted to the goblins by the trick that Feefo played on the King has about run out! Back home the Windy Wizard's payment of gold is shared out and it seems as if their little enterprise is going to be very successful.
Their next door neighbour visits. She is the fairy Tiptoe dressed in a blue frilly dress with great silver wings behind her and the prettiest little face that Jinks has ever seen. She needs the longest feather from the Blue Bird's tail to stir some magic with. Where else could the Blue Bird live but in Dreamland? Tiptoe tells them how to get there and so another adventure is waiting for Tuppeny, Feefo and Jinks and we can all relate to it because the route to Dreamland is the same one we take every night. What a place it is on this particular trip — in fact it's almost Nightmare Land. Think Salvador Dalí as the chair in which they've gone to sleep turns into a fat baby in a frilly dress! In Dreamland, the Blue Bird's supposed to reside in the last cottage but how do you find that when all the cottages are in a circle? Have you ever seen a six-legged parcel? The goblins have. Hold on a moment — now it hasn't got legs, it's turned into treacle. No, it's a parcel again but it's neighing like a horse! There's a hippo that turns into a pig, chocolate that tastes like ginger and cocoa that tastes like lemonade. It's as if they're in a dream. Maybe they are or maybe they're in a real place. How can they hope to locate the Blue-Bird and extract the feather for Tiptoe?

"You darlings!" cried Tiptoe and she gave them each a kiss. They were pleased.

Now she's invited the goblins to tea with a big chocolate cake as the centerpiece so they must have done something right somewhere along the line although as far as I know, they returned from Dreamland with a monkey's tail — but then, dreams are funny like that!
The richest dwarf in the world wants them to go on an errand to the Castle of the Booming Giant. They do so and what a time they have — one that involves a trip up the Sugar Mountain on a camel and eventually confronting a raging giant as tall as the tallest tree, and being captured which is par for the course. Feefo's noise-making ability is a little helpful and plans have to be made with trickery to the fore. There is an escape but Jinks who is always partial to a little bravado unfortunately finds himself having to go back to the castle. Tuppeny and Feefo return home in a depressed state but Tiptoe is a boon because she has access to a blue cloak which makes the wearer invisible so she and the two goblins return to the giant's residence with a sole purpose — the rescue of Jinks.

There are more exciting adventures — one with an Enchanter, and 'The adventure of the Surprising Blue Tablecloth' goes on for pages and pages. The final chapter involves a Bewitched Tree and a Princess whose sister has been stolen away. They're visited by the prettiest little pixie girl you could ever imagine. Her hair is as black as a rook's wing and as curly as a lamb's coat. Her eyes are the colour of brown brooks and her face is like a flower (don't you just love Enid Blyton descriptions?).

"I am the Princess Lightfoot and my sister is the Princess Lightheart. Oh, please do find her for me." Apparently her sister is very good at climbing trees and when they visited the woods the Princess Lightheart went up a very tall one and went on right to the top but she never came down! Tuppeny, who's usually not quite as courageous as his mates, states that he will climb that same tree and see if he can find out what happened to her. Why is he suddenly so valiant? The following passage might offer an explanation —

He couldn't take his eyes of the pretty little pixie. He couldn't bear to see her crying. He felt he wanted to put his arms around her and love her.

Tuppeny is as good as his word and when they all go off to the fateful tree, he bravely climbs up ... and vanishes!

Two down and three to go.

Feefo tries. Three down and two to go.

Up goes Jinks. Goodbye!

Princess Lightfoot flees back to the kind-looking fairy whom she'd seen next door to the goblins' shop. She weeps bitterly as she tells Tiptoe what happened and it's just at that moment that a caller arrives. It's the Nobbly Gnome who is a character the goblins met in a previous adventure and he's come to visit them. When he's informed of the bad tidings he tells them that he will climb the tree and see if he can locate the lost persons but first he'll tie an enormous ball of string to his foot and it can unravel as he goes up so there will always be some contact. Off to the woods he goes with Tiptoe and the Princess Lightfoot and up the tree he climbs. There is a period where nothing happens and the string stops puling at the ball, so Tiptoe and Lightfoot wait very anxiously until they fall asleep but only until they feel the string moving again. Jinks' little white mouse is climbing down with a message that reveals that their friends are all prisoners of the Wise Witch, Konfundle-Rimminy in the Land of Nowhere at the top of the tree and there are instructions as to what they must do. The mouse plays a very useful part in this adventure by climbing back up the string with a magic whip which the goblins had secured in an earlier chapter. A secure room in the witch's great castle houses the three goblins together with the Princess Lightheart and the gallant Feefo has his arm around her trying to comfort the poor little pixie. The white mouse returns and this means it's time for action. Pandemonium erupts and Feefo excels himself with his vocal technique by thundering like three thunderstorms, roaring like fifty dragons, clanking like twelve engines gone wrong, buzzing like a million bees and jingling like a thousand bells. This should scare anyone right out of their skin but unfortunately it's a witch who is the enemy and she reacts as any witch would -

Aha, oho, grrrrrumnph, wouldn't she just show them what she thought of people who did things like that.

She throws on her black cloak, takes up her broomstick and is followed by all her servants — little black imps with bright green eyes. What a clash there is and during the melee Tuppeny, Feefo, Jinks and Nobbly together with the distraught Princess somehow manage to make off to search around in the enveloping darkness for the tall tree.

Feefo had tight hold of Lightheart who thought he was the nicest kindest person she had ever met.

Then there's the pattering of hundreds of tiny feet — the black imps together with the witch are gaining ground! A terribly exciting encounter takes place with some unexpected help together with a dramatic scenario reminiscent of Jack and the Beanstalk. The terror is at an end.
A factor that mustn't be overlooked is that the Princesses are of course, daughters of Royals — the King and Queen of Pixieland so there's going to be a palace visit which entails putting aside a whole morning to get ready. Brand new green and yellow suits for Tuppeny, Feefo and Jinks. Nobbly dresses up too and even washes himself. Tiptoe looks the loveliest of all with a new frock made of cornflowers and a blue fillet around her lovely hair.

Jinks looked and looked at her and thought she was even prettier than a princess.

What rewards should the goblins receive? A palace? Gold? Precious stones? Jinks is happy as he is — he doesn't want anything. Tuppeny and Feefo want just one thing — yes ...the hand in marriage of the little Princess Lightfoot and the Princess Lightheart and they can all live in a palace which was given to them by the King of Fairyland earlier on in the tales. Tuppeny and Feefo kneel down in front of the Princesses and offer pearl necklaces to them as tokens of their betrothal. The King's blessing is given and the weddings will be held the next day at his palace. Our heroic goblins return home but there is one little matter that needs attending to. Jinks! What's he going to do? He'll be very lonely without his friends but suddenly the perfect answer appears — he receives a marriage proposal from a quiet little pixie who has been with them all the time.

... he felt a little hand slipped into his and saw Tiptoe's sweet face smiling at him. "Why need you be lonely? Couldn't we get married too and go and live at the palace as well?"

"Oh Tiptoe, of course!" cries everyone in delight. What fun it will be. They'll all live at the palace and also keep the cottage for old time's sake. Nobbly can come with them as well. He'll be all right because he couldn't manage a wife — he'd forget all about her, and shut her up in the dog kennel or something. At least that's what Tuppeny thinks and he's right because Nobbly is a very scatter-brained chap.

The weddings are the grandest ever held for a hundred years and rather than report on the proceedings it's better to imagine it with all the trumpets blaring and cheering crowds and the goblins with their pretty little wives riding away from the King's palace in a coach.

"Jumping Beetles!" says Tuppeny, happily. We're princes now!

This is a tale that really does end with the words ... "happily ever after!"
Enid Blyton seemed to like 'Cockyolly' birds because they were the subjects of a couple of stories in Sunny Stories magazines (SS for Little Folks #94 & SS #32) the covers of which can be seen on this very site which contains everything Enid Blyton-wise. Another example of the interacting of characters or just of their names can be seen in 'The Cockyolly Bird' because it's all about a mean and very selfish goblin named Feefo! I can't see 'our' Feefo in that light so maybe it was just the name being re-used despite the fact that they both associate with a Cockyolly (Feefo mentions it in the first chapter of The Green Goblin Book). Another point is that Fifteen Minute Tales which contains the story of 'The Cockyolly Bird' came out a year after The Green Goblin Book — and then For Something Almost Completely Different, 'The Bad Cockyolly Bird' was a short nursery tale about a toy bird of that name which featured in a 1937 Sunny Stories (#32). This also featured a strip-story entitled 'Feefo, Tuppeny and Jinks' and I'm really all at sea here so I think that's about enough — except to mention that the Jolly Story Book has a picture of the Bad Cockyolly Bird in case you want to see what such a creature is supposed to look like.

The 'Windy Wizard' also played a part in Adventures of the Wishing Chair although he had a long beard at that particular time.

The goblins' experiences in Dreamland were not unlike those of Peter and Mollie (Adventures of the Wishing Chair) when they flew into the Land of Dreams. The goblins also flew into Dreamland on a chair it seems ... but you can never be too sure of anything when dreams are involved.

Just as there is more than one Peter in the world so is there more than one 'Tiptoe'. The 'Tiptoe' who's married to Jolly the sailor-doll (Tales of Toyland) is a fairy-doll and the 'Tiptoe' in this book is a real fairy.

It's a little difficult to imagine Carl Barks sitting in his lounge chair and reading an Enid Blyton book but it could have happened because round the 1955 mark he produced an extraordinary Uncle Scrooge/Donald Duck comic story entitled 'Land beneath the Ground'. Deep down underneath the earth's crust is a gigantic cavern which extends all round the world. There are no stalactites or stalagmites propping things up here and there but great pillars support the crust and it's in this land that Scrooge McDuck, Donald, and his nephews encounter the Terries and the Fermies. These are ball-like creatures with cornpone accents that spend their waking hours either lifting great ledges up to snap them with enormous force or, in the Terries' case, curling up into balls by the thousands and rolling down inclines to smash into the great pillars and cause earthquakes. If only we'd known! These spherical menaces with hands and heads seem very similar to the Hoo-Moo-Loos who also roll about although they don't cause upheaval as the Terries and the Fermies do. A version of The Green Goblin Book came out in 1951 and it was called Feefo, Tuppeny and Jinks so the timing is about right (1951/1955) — could Barks have read it and based his Terries and Fermies on the Hoo-Moo-Loos? We're hardly likely to find out because Barks is no longer with us but speculation is always welcome when discussing Enid Blyton books.

The tall tree in the last chapter might be a forerunner of the Faraway Tree. The first 'Faraway Tree' adventures came out in about 1938 so, as 'The Green Goblins' saw the light round 1935, the enormous tree in the final adventure could have been an inspiration for the Landmark books which featured Moon-Face, Saucepan, Silky and Co.

Silky the elf from the Faraway Tree is challenged for her position as the prettiest character in all the Enid Blyton books that deal with fairydom. The descriptions of Tiptoe, Lightheart, and Lightfoot bring this about but at least Silky has Santa Claus on her side through a chance meeting although, seeing the others are not dolls and are therefore not likely to come into contact with Santa, it could be a matter of individual judgment.

'Tuppeny' was sometimes used as a nickname or a term of endearment — often for a small girl. Tuppence was a tiny sum of money (two pennies) so I gathered the use of such a name was the acknowledgment of a dear-one as being a 'treasure' by a doting aunt or uncle and as 'treasure' often consists of money this 'treasure', who is very small, might represent a mere tuppence — but she's still a 'treasure'. At least that's how I interpret it. I've a feeling that some rustic Blyton character like Tammylan or Twigg could easily have referred to the youngest of a family as 'Tuppeny' or 'Tuppence'.

Can't think of many Blyton books that report on a marriage (Tony adds — there is a wedding described in Let's Pretend)but this one does and I think it's an occasion worthy of mention. I can't see any marriage ceremonies in the Secret Seven, Find-Outers, Kirrins, or even in the St. Clare's or Malory Towers series and we missed the Smugs/Mannering wedding but possibly there are a few in the fairy-world stories because in these scenarios Princesses and even commoners can be swept up by handsome Princes and taken away to castles where they live happily ever after. These illustrations are hidden by default to ensure faster browsing. Loading the illustrations is recommended for high-speed internet users only.