The Mystery of the Burnt Cottage: How has Blyton’s original text fared in a modern edition? part nine

And so we have reached the final part! This one has taken me about 7 months to do.

Previous parts can be seen hereherehereherehereherehere and here.

As before my own copy is a Methuen from 1957 – the 12th reprint/impression of the original. The new version is the most modern of any paperbacks I have looked at so far,  an Egmont copy from 2014.


There actually isn’t much to report in this chapter.

Single speech marks are added to sounding the letter D loudly at the end of Find. The word remains capitalised, though so it seems overkill to have speech marks too.

When they meet Inspector Jenks, his pipe is written out. The big man knocked out his pipe and looked round, therefore becomes  the big man looked around. Hardly worth having a sentence there just for that.

And lastly the one queer is changed to funny.

Oh and for completeness sake – the missing italics:

  • Mr Goon would be sure to pretend that he found out everything
  • I really have got brains
  • What is the matter with Buster?
  • it was most interesting, most interesting
  • Oh yes
  • it’s awfully late
  • We shall get into a row


And again, the editor seems to have given up by this stage of the book. Or maybe because there’s less going on there’s less to change? I don’t know but it seems that every book has a far lower number of changed in the final chapter or two.

Anyway – what is changed:

Firing it is this time changed to starting it (as in starting the fire) pretty much all previous changes have been to setting fire.

And that’s all, apart from a couple of missing italics:

  • it was a bit of luck
  • you simply never know

And so, to end on an anti-climax: that was three whole changes. That brings us to a final tally of 187 edits. (Yes, I know, for someone who decries these updates at every opportunity it seems strange I’m complaining that there aren’t enough. But I LIKE complaining about them, it gives me something to do.)

So there we are, at the end of another book. I’m not sure if I will start a new one now, I don’t have any paperbacks ready to go anyway. I do plan to do some sort of comparison of comparisons seeing which book is the most chopped at though. So stay tuned, I bet you can’t wait!


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1 Response to The Mystery of the Burnt Cottage: How has Blyton’s original text fared in a modern edition? part nine

  1. Francis says:

    Well done Fiona.
    Much appreciated.


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