There are still more books with Enid Blyton’s names on the covers that are not continuations or retellings, and most of them come under the ‘game book’ heading.
Game books, for want of a better term are books which at designated points give the reader two or more options on how to continue the story. The options can be based on answers to puzzles or simply choices as to whether the children will split up or stay together, investigate a noise in the night or stay put and so on. There will be multiple ways to complete the story – but not all will have a happy ending!
The Adventure Squad
There are two of these books by Dave Morris, published in 1994. They are based on the first two Adventure Series books.
Famous Five Adventure Games
There are eight of these books by Stephen Thraves published between 1984 and 1988. Each one came in plastic wallet containing a dice with the heads of the Five on five sides and a mystery icon on the other, a map, a code book, a measuring strip, a code breaker a rucksack card, a picnic hamper card and some picnic cards.
They are based on eight of the Five books, if I give you the titles you can probably guess most of them.
- The Wreckers’ Tower Game (
- The Haunted Railway Game
- The Whispering Island Game
- The Sinister Lake Game
- The Wailing Lighthouse Game
- The Secret Airfield Game
- The Shuddering Mountain Game
- The Missing Scientist Game
For those who get stuck I have added the original titles below, in white. Just click and drag to highlight so you can read them.
- Five Go Down to the Sea
- Five Go Off to Camp
- Five Have a Mystery to Solve
- Five on a Hike Together
- Five Go to Demon’s Rocks
- Five Go to Billycock Hill
- Five Get into a Fix
- Five Have a Wonderful Time
I have 4 of these, (Whispering Island, Wailing Lighthouse, Secret Airfield and Shuddering Mountain). I’ve barely opened them before but have done so today to see if they are complete. Three are but Shuddering Mountain is missing everything (obvious seeing as it’s not got the plastic wallet!) Luckily some of the items can be borrowed from the other games, the map and codebook are in the Cave of Books, it’s just the code-reader that might pose a problem.
The Famous Five and You
Mary Danby wrote six of these between 1987 and 1989. They are based on the first six Famous Five books.
- The Famous Five and You Search for Treasure!
- The Famous Five and You Find Adventure!
- The Famous Five and You Run Away!
- The Famous Five and You Search for Smugglers
- The Famous Five and You Take Off!
- The Famous Five and You Underground!
The fifth sounds more like you take a plane rather than a caravan, and the sixth is rather vague given the number of underground adventures the Five have.
These were reissued in 2010-2011 with new covers and with just The Famous Five Adventure Game Book #1-6 as their titles.
I have played Book 2, based on Five Go Adventuring Again.
Famous Five Survival Guide
Published in 2008 this is a large hardback book. It contains a new story about the Five along with puzzles to solve to assist them in their adventure.
Five Find-Outers Solve it Yourself Mysteries
There are four of these by Stephen Thraves from 1986.
- The Five Find-Outers and the Shadowy Figure
- The Five Find-Outers and the Faked Painting
- The Five Find-Outers and the Note from Nowhere
- The Five Find-Outers and the Raided Safe
These are ‘loosely based’ on some of the Find-Outers books, though I’m not sure which. The second is likely Banshee Towers, and the third could be either Spiteful Letters or Strange Messages, probably the latter. I’ve no idea about the shadowy figure or raided safe, however.
Five Find-Outers Find the Villains Games
These are 1990s reprints of the above solve-it-yourself mysteries but with substantial changes to the format. They have added a wallet containing picture files and a suspect list. The cave of books lists only the middle two, though the image of the back cover shows that all four were either made or were planned to be made.
How many of these have you played?
I bought “The Famous Five Survival Guide” in a small bookstore in Uxbridge, UK, where André and I were living at the time while he was working in England. That same bookstore also had a book on Blue Peter, a German shepherd dog. That was the very first time ever I heard about Blue Peter who became famous on British children’s TV.
“The Famous Five and You” was translated into German and I bought the first in the series at the time (FOATI), but never quite figured out how to do it. I gave up after the first chapter.
I’ve never heard of any of these, I must look for some, they sound fun.
Can’t get them in Australia I don’t think.