The Enid Blyton Society

Ladybird books

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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Courtenay » 30 Dec 2016, 23:19

If you scroll down to the bottom of the page that I linked to earlier (http://www.neighbourstour.com.au/) you can watch a clip from a BBC travel programme that went on the Neighbours tour. You may be surprised to find out the real names of Erinsborough and Ramsay Street! :wink: (I've never been there myself, but it's only a few miles away from where I used to go to university.)
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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Rob Houghton » 30 Dec 2016, 23:40

We still watch Coronation Street - but its so predictable, I could write the plots myself - and it all seems to be affairs and murders and affairs and murders. Neighbours, on the other hand, is often surprising and unpredictable, and manages a good mix of drama and comedy. :-)
'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: Ladybird books

Postby Katharine » 16 Jan 2017, 17:07

Does anyone else here collect Ladybird boooks? If so, do you collect the common ones, or the rarer ones? In which case, can you recommend a good bookseller?

Sorry, I know this is an Enid Blyton website. :D
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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Lucky Star » 16 Jan 2017, 19:29

That's OK. This is the Other Authors section after all so quite alright to talk about non Blyton books. Alas I do not currently collect them as we still have quite a number of my old childhood copies at home. If I did I would probably stick to the ones I had as a child. It would be a nostalgia exercise for me rather than a serious attempt to collect the series.
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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Katharine » 16 Jan 2017, 20:04

I had a few Ladybird books as a child, which I've still got, and have been adding to my collection for a while now.

The Ladybird reference book I got a few weeks ago is very interesting, although a little technical in places. I hadn't realised how difficult it was to follow the Ladybird trail, as records of the early books are non-existent or very limited, and The British Library doesn't have full records either. Even as recently as the 1960s, information seems very patchy.

Apparently there were a number of children's books printed before the Ladybird brand took off, but I don't think I'll attempt to buy any of those, as I suspect they are extremely expensive.

On the whole I'm happy to collect more modern versions of the books, as they are pretty much the same as the 1st editions, however a few of the earliest titles had the text changed only a couple of years after first being printed, and so I'd love to get hold of copies of those. I've seen one on E-Bay, but I'm not prepared to pay over £200. :D
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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Anita Bensoussane » 16 Jan 2017, 22:18

Although I love Ladybird books, I've never made a serious effort to collect them. Many of mine are from my childhood, and I've picked up others over the years from charity shops and sales. My daughter and son got a lot of pleasure from them too when they were younger.
"Heyho for a starry night and a heathery bed!" - Jack, The Secret Island.

"There is no bond like the bond of having read and liked the same books."
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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Anita Bensoussane » 21 Feb 2017, 09:38

I haven't bought any of the humorous Ladybird titles aimed at adults (The Ladybird Book of Mindfulness, How it Works: The Student, etc.) because I regard them as ephemeral - good for a laugh, but not the sort of thing I'd want to keep and treasure.

However, I was interested to read an article in The Guardian this morning about another development in Ladybird books:

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/ ... -grown-ups

A new series has been released, 'Ladybird Experts', which is "designed to give adults pocket briefings on some of the most pressing and complex issues of today." So far, three titles have been published - Quantum Mechanics, Evolution and Climate Change (Prince Charles contributed to the latter).

Lawrence Zeegen, dean of design at Ravensbourne College in London, has reservations about the series as he thinks that the vintage format sits uncomfortably with the modern subject-matter and "feels a little patronising":

"The contradictions are most evident in the Climate Change book, which aimed to draw attention to an urgent 21st-century issue, while nodding back to the aesthetics of the 50s and 60s - with the curious result that it appears to endorse the Prince of Wales’s reactionary views on architecture, and, by extension, society."

That doesn't put me off but I do realise there are limits as to how much can be covered in short books which are heavy on illustrations. Nevertheless, even as an adult I still enjoy the vintage non-fiction Ladybird titles and have learnt a fair amount from them despite the fact that they're aimed at children. They provide a concise, structured, beautifully-illustrated introduction to a topic and leave readers with an understanding of the essentials.

I assume there are more titles in the pipeline, but of the ones published so far I think Quantum Mechanics appeals to me most. All three are available on Amazon but I haven't yet seen any in the shops.
"Heyho for a starry night and a heathery bed!" - Jack, The Secret Island.

"There is no bond like the bond of having read and liked the same books."
- E. Nesbit, The Wonderful Garden.


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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Wolfgang » 21 Feb 2017, 17:50

I suppose there's a high probability your daughter will be able to help you explaining quantum mechanics should you have any questions about it. I wonder if the book features "Schrödinger's cat".
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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Courtenay » 21 Feb 2017, 18:35

Wolfgang wrote:I wonder if the book features "Schrödinger's cat".


Maybe it does and it doesn't at the same time... :wink:
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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Anita Bensoussane » 21 Feb 2017, 20:22

:lol:

I once had a housemate who was studying Physics with Astrophysics and he talked a lot about quantum mechanics and that dratted cat!
"Heyho for a starry night and a heathery bed!" - Jack, The Secret Island.

"There is no bond like the bond of having read and liked the same books."
- E. Nesbit, The Wonderful Garden.


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Re: Ladybird books

Postby shadow » 22 Feb 2017, 13:37

I prefer Terry Pratchett's view of the cat - that it was very very annoyed.
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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Anita Bensoussane » 25 Mar 2017, 15:36

This article on Ladybird books contains an interesting selection of pictures showing how 1960s (or earlier) illustrations were altered or repainted for 1970s editions. I like both versions as Ladybird books still tended to feature beautifully painted pictures at this stage, rather than cartoons or photos. It's fascinating to see the changes to things like hairstyles, clothes, transport and goods in the 1970s editions - as well as signs of urban development, greater diversity, gender roles being less stereotyped, more emphasis on safety, and the growing influence of television.

I'm not sure that the 1960s "shopkeeper" picture has got the correct 1970s equivalent next to it as the 1970s picture appears to show Jane jumping over a box in the garden!

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/artic ... years.html
"Heyho for a starry night and a heathery bed!" - Jack, The Secret Island.

"There is no bond like the bond of having read and liked the same books."
- E. Nesbit, The Wonderful Garden.


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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Rob Houghton » 25 Mar 2017, 15:51

Fascinating! I love the changes - very interesting, although I had to smile at the way daddy is now lounging in his deckchair while Mummy does all the gardening, and how he is 'helping' with wrapping the present by merely holding a ribbon! :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: Ladybird books

Postby KEVP » 25 Mar 2017, 16:31

They show the 60s picture where Jane is bowling underarm, but it was indeed a ladybird book that taught me the legend that overarm cricket bowling was invented by a girl in a dress!
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Re: Ladybird books

Postby Anita Bensoussane » 27 Mar 2017, 08:56

I'm a bit behind the times as I've only just heard of "Me Books", which include some classic Ladybird titles. Watching the clip below, I like the idea of children being able to interact with the book and make it very much their own. I just hope that the extra features don't prompt youngsters to interrupt the story every single time instead of listening to it all in one go. The rhythm and flow of a narrative are part of the enjoyment. Also, I hope parents continue to share books with their children and don't come to rely on electronic devices to entertain them.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4h1EYwDg8lU
"Heyho for a starry night and a heathery bed!" - Jack, The Secret Island.

"There is no bond like the bond of having read and liked the same books."
- E. Nesbit, The Wonderful Garden.


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