The Enid Blyton Society

60 Years Ago This Week - Enid Blyton's Magazine 1957 -

Discuss Blyton's magazines, short stories and poetry here.

Re: 60 Years Ago This Week - Enid Blyton's Magazine 1957 -

Postby John Pickup » 10 Sep 2017, 17:59

Another smashing review, Rob. Some of the books Enid published after 1957, such as Strange Ruby and Good Old Secret Seven, I like but they definitely weren't up to the standard of her earlier novels.
My wife's sister is called Freida, spelt as it is in Germany, which isn't surprising as my late father-in-law came from there.
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Re: 60 Years Ago This Week - Enid Blyton's Magazine 1957 -

Postby Rob Houghton » 10 Sep 2017, 18:48

I agree, John. there aren't very many of Enid's later books (after 1957) that I really love - if any - although as you say, there is still much to enjoy - they just aren't 'the best'.
'Oh voice of Spring of Youth
hearts mad delight,
Sing on, sing on, and when the sun is gone
I'll warm me with your echoes
through the night.'

(E. Blyton, Sunday Times, 1951)



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Re: 60 Years Ago This Week - Enid Blyton's Magazine 1957 -

Postby Courtenay » 11 Sep 2017, 16:25

I've just had time to sit down and read the latest feast from '57, if you like. :wink: Many thanks, as always, to Rob for the reviews and Tony for the scanning.

I really enjoyed all the uncollected short stories in this one. A Dreadful Mistake was a bit different, I agree, with the television theme, but it does show Enid keeping up with the times. As Rob said, it could be considered unfair that Freda got no marks at all when at least the work she did was correct, just not the right homework for that day — but I guess the point of the story is to show that Freda wasn't being very honest or nice, determined as she was to get the highest marks just to show up Hilda, who she thought wouldn't be able to hand in anything at all. It's a pretty standard Blyton theme, really — underhanded behaviour never pays off.

The Noddy story, I thought, was pretty typical but actually quite a lot of fun — Big-Ears plays more of a central role than usual AND turns out unexpectedly to be quite handy with his fists!! :shock: The hammer story I thought was going to be a bit of a boring drag, but I ended up laughing out loud at the silliness of it. A good haul of stories all round. :D
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Re: 60 Years Ago This Week - Enid Blyton's Magazine 1957 -

Postby Rob Houghton » 11 Sep 2017, 16:29

Thanks, Courtenay! Yes - I must admit the hammer story made me chuckle - and I enjoyed all the stories this week - even the Noddy one...though I did think that the basic story line had been used way too often! Good to see Big ears taking centre stage though - although I can't imagine him easily being mistaken for Noddy in the dark!! :lol:
'Oh voice of Spring of Youth
hearts mad delight,
Sing on, sing on, and when the sun is gone
I'll warm me with your echoes
through the night.'

(E. Blyton, Sunday Times, 1951)



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Re: 60 Years Ago This Week - Enid Blyton's Magazine 1957 -

Postby Anita Bensoussane » 12 Sep 2017, 08:33

Thanks as always to Rob and Tony for the write-up and scans. Another interesting issue. Young readers must have been most concerned to hear of Enid Blyton's illness and it's lovely that she takes pains to reassure them that she's now much better.

Her comment about the cinema serialisation of Five on a Treasure Island - "I do hope you will be able to see all the parts, because it is tiresome to miss one or two, and so lose the thread of the story!" - reminds me of the frustration of missing an episode of a TV serial in the days before video recorders, catch-up services, etc.

In her Thank-You Corner I notice that Enid thanks Chew Kwong Sen for sending her a badge - yet more evidence that she welcomed readers of all races and nationalities.

I like 'A Dreadful Mistake' very much. The characters are interesting, the story provides food for thought and I enjoy the sound of old-fashioned expressions like "they couldn't do their homework because they hadn't their notes" and "She doesn't swank."

Rob Houghton wrote:I enjoyed it ['A Dreadful Mistake'] but it did throw up a few questions - (SPOILERS!) such as why Freda got into trouble, as she might have done the wrong homework, but as she'd been away the month before, she had never done it...so surely she should have been marked, rather than not having any marks at all? :?

Yes, and it actually makes the teacher (the ubiquitous Miss Brown!) look bad because it was surely her job to ensure that Freda caught up with work she'd missed when she returned to school. Incidentally, the children seem to be given an inordinate amount of homework considering that they're probably supposed to be of junior school age. Except for having to learn weekly spellings, we didn't get any homework at all until we started senior school at the age of eleven.

Rob Houghton wrote:It's an interesting story - but the thing I found most interesting was Enid's mention, several times, of television. I know she did sometimes mention television, but it actually centres around a character who likes to watch television very much indeed.

It appears that Enid was taking the opportunity to express her disapproval of children being allowed to sit in front of the box every evening instead of concentrating on their schoolwork and other tasks. I've no doubt that Enid agreed with Freda's mother: "She says she can do her work and watch television - but nobody can, of course."

Rob Houghton wrote:...we have Our Letter Page - and a letter from a boy called Geoffrey Holding, whose cat has had 23 kittens! (not all at once obviously!!) and gave birth to them in 'a trunk' without anyone realising - the trunk lid got shut, separating the kittens from their mother...and the mother 'gnawed the corner of the trunk' into a hole, attempting to reach her kittens!

That sounds horribly distressing. I hope the kittens didn't suffer any ill effects.

All the stories are attractively illustrated and it's good to see that artist Susan Carruthers signed her drawings for 'Lost - My Good Hammer'. What a pity that relatively few illustrators signed or initialled their work!
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Re: 60 Years Ago This Week - Enid Blyton's Magazine 1957 -

Postby pete9012S » 12 Sep 2017, 08:52

Anita Bensoussane wrote:In her Thank-You Corner I notice that Enid thanks Chew Kwong Sen for sending her a badge - yet more evidence that she welcomed readers of all races and nationalities.



Yes,that caught my attention too.I tried to see if there was any online evidence that Chew was still a fan of Enid's but drew a blank.
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Re: 60 Years Ago This Week - Enid Blyton's Magazine 1957 -

Postby Rob Houghton » 12 Sep 2017, 10:20

Anita Bensoussane wrote:In her Thank-You Corner I notice that Enid thanks Chew Kwong Sen for sending her a badge - yet more evidence that she welcomed readers of all races and nationalities.


Yes, and it actually makes the teacher (the ubiquitous Miss Brown!) look bad because it was surely her job to ensure that Freda caught up with work she'd missed when she returned to school. Incidentally, the children seem to be given an inordinate amount of homework considering that they're probably supposed to be of junior school age. Except for having to learn weekly spellings, we didn't get any homework at all until we started senior school at the age of eleven.


It appears that Enid was taking the opportunity to express her disapproval of children being allowed to sit in front of the box every evening instead of concentrating on their schoolwork and other tasks. I've no doubt that Enid agreed with Freda's mother: "She says she can do her work and watch television - but nobody can, of course."


Thanks Anita! Yes - I missed the thank you to Chew Kwong Sen - but it does indeed prove that Enid treated all children fairly and as equals. Each time I read EB's Magazine I realise more and more just how inclusive Enid was, long before the word took on its present meaning regards race and religion etc!

We were the same regards homework. The children in Miss Brown's class (that teacher certainly got around, didn't she? Maybe she was sacked for being such a tyrant, lol!!) :wink: had a lot of homework. Like you, we only had weekly spellings to learn at that age. It was quite a shock suddenly having homework at Secondary school!

I found Enid's attitude to TV quite revealing. Obviously she couldn't write stories or letters etc herself if the television was on, judging by what she says. I'm not sure its really true though - we are all different. I wrote a good 60% of my latest serial while the TV was on, and often write my Journal articles or other pieces of writing, while the TV is blasting away in the background! :lol:
'Oh voice of Spring of Youth
hearts mad delight,
Sing on, sing on, and when the sun is gone
I'll warm me with your echoes
through the night.'

(E. Blyton, Sunday Times, 1951)



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Re: 60 Years Ago This Week - Enid Blyton's Magazine 1957 -

Postby o'malley » 12 Sep 2017, 20:22

I'd just like to add, if I may, how fantastic it is to read these (new to myself) reviews and scans of both Sunny Stories and Enid's own magazine, terrific stuff and thank you very much both, Rob and Tony for doing this amazing work for us - deeply appreciated and enjoyed!

PS I'd also like to say how marvellous the Cave of books is. What a fantastic place to visit with scans of the odd whole book too. Sublime.
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Re: 60 Years Ago This Week - Enid Blyton's Magazine 1957 -

Postby Eddie Muir » 12 Sep 2017, 21:57

I'm glad to hear that you are enjoying the goodies on this site, Nicholas. Rob's fortnightly post is superb and the work that Tony has done to create the Cave of books is indeed marvellous. :D
'Go down to the side-shows by the river this afternoon. I'll meet you somewhere in disguise. Bet you won't know me!' wrote Fatty.

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Re: 60 Years Ago This Week - Enid Blyton's Magazine 1957 -

Postby Rob Houghton » 12 Sep 2017, 22:51

Thank you, o'malley, and Eddie - I'm very pleased people enjoy my reviews, and its always good to hear what people think of the stories and Enid's letter etc, each fortnight. :-)

the Cave of books is amazing, I agree...except maybe that it encourages me to spend too much money on eBay! :lol:
'Oh voice of Spring of Youth
hearts mad delight,
Sing on, sing on, and when the sun is gone
I'll warm me with your echoes
through the night.'

(E. Blyton, Sunday Times, 1951)



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