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Penelope Farmer-Charlotte Sometimes

PostPosted: 26 Mar 2006, 23:13
by LuvMyBlyton
Anyone else read this book? It's about a girl who while at boarding school finds she has gone back into time to 1918. I can't remember, but I think she may switch places with another child?

I thought this was a great "school story" with the element of having to figure out which time period Charlotte is in, as she keeps switching back and forth! I remember reading it at least 5 times, I must find it in my boxes.

Anyone else like this book, or have any comments on it's worth as a school story?

Charlotte Sometimes/When Marnie Was There

PostPosted: 26 Mar 2006, 23:32
by Anita Bensoussane
I love Charlotte Sometimes, though I don't tend to regard it as a "school story" as it's so much more than that. It's very imaginative and really makes the reader stop and think about time and about identity. The girl with whom Charlotte switches places is called Clare. Oh, and the ending of the story is startling - I won't give it away here but I get goosebumps just thinking about it! Funnily enough, about three weeks ago my daughter said she felt like reading something unusual and I recommended Charlotte Sometimes, which she thoroughly enjoyed.

Has anyone ever read a book called When Marnie Was There, by Joan G. Robinson? It's a bit like Charlotte Sometimes in that it's a haunting story about a girl who doesn't fit in, and there is a time-travel element. Another thought-provoking read.

Tom's Midnight Garden by Philippa Pearce is yet another brilliant time-travel story, and my personal favourite.

PostPosted: 27 Mar 2006, 17:08
by Raci
I've read 'When Marnie Was There' and I really enjoyed it as a child although I haven't read it for a while. I still have my very well-read pb copy upstairs - another book for the re-read pile :D

I'd never heard of 'Charlotte Sometimes' but it sounds very interesting from what you've both said, I'll try and get hold of a copy :D

I have a very important question about this though and its related to a well talked about point in these forums:
I've been looking at it on Amazon and it has very good reviews. 6 people say 5 star and 1 says 4 star - pretty impresive.
But there was one coment that concerned me:

The first time I read it, I read a paperback cover lent to me by a classmate. Then, a few years later, I took the book out of the library; it was an older hardcover copy, and the ending was different!

Without saying anything about 'either' versions of the ending could either of you recomend which copies I should be on the look out for? I would assume the original text written by the original author would be better but I don't know when it was changed. The copy Amazon are selling is a pb printed in 2002. So this might well be one book that I'll need to look out for on eBay.

Thanks for your help.

PostPosted: 27 Mar 2006, 18:37
by Anita Bensoussane
Gosh - I don't know whether my copy of Charlotte Sometimes has the original ending or not :? ! It's a 1981 Puffin paperback with a cover design by Janina Ede. Aargh :evil: - I wonder what was changed and when, and why?! The book was first published in 1969 by Chatto & Windus. Personally I'd now be interested to read both endings in order to compare them. LuvMyBlyton, if you find your copy perhaps we could compare endings!

Raci, after reading your message I looked at the reviews on Amazon and was surprised to read that "The Cure" have written a song based on Charlotte Sometimes. I'll have to look out for that.

About three years ago I wrote a review of Charlotte Sometimes which can be seen on the Kidz-Books website: ... spx?id=193

It's good to meet fellow fans of Charlotte Sometimes and When Marnie Was There. Nobody else seems to have heard of them!


PostPosted: 27 Mar 2006, 21:51
by LuvMyBlyton
I'm off to look :evil: I HATE that they change books. My copy is a Puffin or Penguin paperback, light purple cover. I'm going to go see, will post back when I find it.

PostPosted: 27 Mar 2006, 22:02
by Anita Bensoussane
Hope you manage to find the book, LuvMyBlyton. If you were planning to re-read the whole thing in the near future, please don't spoil the ending for yourself by checking that out first! And to avoid giving away the ending to others perhaps we'd better discuss it in private emails anyway.

PostPosted: 27 Mar 2006, 22:39
by LuvMyBlyton
Will do, thanks for the heads up Raci :) Will pm you Anita after re-reading the book!

Re: Penelope Farmer-Charlotte Sometimes

PostPosted: 18 Feb 2009, 02:42
by auscatherine
I loved this book! I didn't own a copy but remember borrowing it from the library several times.

Re: Penelope Farmer-Charlotte Sometimes

PostPosted: 26 Sep 2012, 10:03
by Lawrie
I loved this book too. A friend of mine met Penelope Farmer at a conference recently and I think she said there is a sequel to it, called something like Emma in Winter? Has anyone read this?

Re: Penelope Farmer-Charlotte Sometimes

PostPosted: 26 Sep 2012, 13:39
by Eddie Muir
I read Charlotte Sometimes on Anita's recommendation a year ago and thoroughly enjoyed it. I bought the 40th Anniversary Edition, published by Red Fox, from Amazon and it has the original ending. :D


Tom's Midnight Garden by Philippa Pearce is my favourite children's book and, if you haven't read it, I urge you to do so. You'll be in for a real treat. :D