I feel like this gets harder every year! I suppose it does as I don’t reuse products, and rely on either things that have come out in the past year or things I’ve somehow missed. There doesn’t seem to be much out this year apart from the usual short stories and a couple of books to do with the Malory Towers TV series.
Anyway, here’s what I have found.
New book ideas
Hodder have been busy as there were quite a few ‘new’ Enid Blyton books out this year – and the preorder list for next year looks even longer!
There were four bumper collections of short stories this year; Christmas Wishes, Nature Stories, Stories of Rotten Rascals and Magical Fairy Tales.
Also out is a collection of letters from Bobs, Enid Blyton’s terrier, which were published in Teachers World originally.
Bones and Biscuits: Letters from a Dog Named Bob, normally £9.99 but currently £8.49 from Waterstones.
Another collection is Are We There Yet? Which contains all six of the Caravan Family books, and just over £1 per book too!
Are We There Yet? £6.99 from Waterstones.
The popularity of the new Malory Towers TV series has meant there’s a novelisation of the series out now too, perfect for anyone who loved the show.
Darrell and Friends Malory Towers, £6.99 from Waterstones.
There was also one new Famous Five For Grown-Ups by Bruno Vincent. If you know someone who wants to be reminded of the rather miserable 2020 we’ve endured there’s Five Go Absolutely Nowhere. (How long Julian’s laptop battery would last on Kirrin island may be addressed in the story, I don’t know).
Five Go Absolutely Nowhere, £8.99 from Waterstones.
The last official Blyton-related book I found is The Magic Faraway Tree: Silky’s Story which is a chunky hardback picture book with a new story by Jean Willis.
The Magic Faraway Tree: Silky’s Story, £12.99 from Waterstones.
I also found one I’d quite like to read (my library has a copy, but whether or not I can get ahold of it is the question). It’s Favourite Stories of Courageous girls, and features 24 courageous girls from children’s books, including George of the Famous Five.
Favourite Stories of Courageous Girls, £6.99 from Waterstones.
And lastly, if you know a series Enid Blyton fan, and have quite a lot of money to spend, there’s Reading Enid Blyton. This is a fairly positive-sounding look at Blyton’s work, but it’s published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing so I think it’s maybe a dissertation/thesis work rather than a regular book. That might explain the price too.
Reading Enid Blyton, preorder for £61.99 from Waterstones.
I always love browsing Etsy for presents, and OK some of these might be machine printed but they’re small scale by small sellers.
The comedy group who perform the Bumper Blyton Improvised Adventure (I went to their show at the Edinburgh Fringe a few years ago) have their on Etsy shop with two Blyton-themed gifts. One is a Blyton-inspired tea towel featuring phrases such as what a fathead, oh goody goody and you’re a real brick. The other is a pin badge of a bottle of ginger-beer with lashings of ginger beer on it.
I also found some nice Noddy jewelry from a shop called CherishbyNicola. Below are a keyring, earrings and pendant but there are other styles and designs too.
I also like these Noddy book earrings (anything book shaped is a winner with me!) by MulticolouredMagpie.
Not new, but something I bought last year for Stef is this Famous Five print by TheCQforKids.
And lastly there were some nice mugs featuring book covers, too. One with Famous Five paperbacks from different eras, and the other with Dragon Malory Towers paperbacks.
It can be difficult to get to the post office at the moment, if you’re shielding or in lock down especially. It’s not a good year to buy restaurant vouchers or event tickets, really, but a subscription for books or magazines might be appreciated.
Firstly, you could subscribe to the Enid Blyton Society on behalf of the person you are giving it to and then over a year three journals would be sent to them, and they’d also get access to the members only section of the website.
Subscriptions are £12 for UK residents, £20 for those in Europe and £27 for anywhere else in the world. The Journal is a non-profit magazine and so the charges simply cover the printing and postage.
Or, if they like audiobooks, there are a lot of Enid Blyton books now on Audible with more being added all the time. The titles below are in my library but there are so, so many more from the new short story collections to the Faraway Tree and Wishing Chair books to Cherry Tree Farm and Galliano’s Circus. There are also tons of books that would appeal to Blyton fans whether they are old or young.
Memberships start at £7.99 for one month up to £69.99 for a year.