She was born on 11th August 1897 and passed away well before I was born on 28th November 1968. She was a prolific children's writer and enjoyed huge popular success. She did suffer some problems, namely the "Blyton Bans" where allegedly her books were removed from the children's section on the library and the BBC ban which I wrote about in an earlier post. The ban was apparently because she used a vocabulary that was thought to be too limited and presented a "too rosy" version of the world. Perhaps this is true, perhaps there aren't 'lashings of ginger beer' in real life and perhaps it's not possible to make a bed for the night out of heather and bracken on the moor but you know what? I don't care. Reading is escapism and as a kid, I wasn't interested in whether I could really do all of these things. I was far more interested in pretending that maybe, just maybe, it was possible.
Malory Towers, St. Clare's and Whyteleafe, where The Naughtiest Girl was educated. Stories of midnight feasts and the crazy escapades they got up to were just the thing I wanted to read. I inhaled it all, start to finish and then read it all over again. These books sparked my imagination, made anything seem possible (hello, Magic Faraway Tree!) and provided the pure, simple escapism into a world where the worst problems could be overcome with the help of your 'chums', a loyal dog and some more ginger beer.
This magical world of Blyton was a pillar of my childhood and for this reason, on Mother's Day, I choose this literary icon to say a big THANK YOU to.
Which author played a part in your childhood?