Never mind reading this as a child, I’m loving it now! How exciting to read that Enid Blyton’s Famous Five series is getting a new makeover and being turned into a film franchise! Just wow! I can’t believe it. The UK film production company Working Title have bought the rights from Hodder – the publisher who now own the twenty book strong licence.
As some of my readers know, I am a huge Famous Five fan. I grew up reading all the books and used to sneak a torch to bed with me so I can snuggle underneath the covers and live through wild adventures of fighting smugglers, overthrowing henchmen, uncovering secret trails and trekking through old, abandoned train tunnels – all on a full stomach thanks to Aunt Fanny’s feast-like dinners and lots of strawberries and cream, all washed down with gallons of ginger beer!
I’ve read many reports of how the series as a whole is outdated and doesn’t appeal to today’s generation of children, which is such a shame. Thankfully, it seems these reports have been proven wrong as Enid Blyton is still one of the best selling authors for children today, despite passing away in 1968. Enid Blyton has sold more than 100 million books worldwide, with Famous Five books selling hundreds of thousands of copies each year. A sure fire favourite to me!
I honestly believe that these adventure stories are timeless. They are all about the youthful innocence of four children enjoying their childhood by overthrowing the criminal adults. There’s a sense of danger and seriousness to the books, but you always know that a line is never crossed. I used to go adventuring myself as a 10 year old, hoping to find my own derelict island where treasure was buried by crooks. And unlike some of the books published today, the Famous Five has appeal to both young boys as well as young girls. Again, as some people may know, I have a fetish love for hardback books, and over the last year or so, I’ve been building my collection of Famous Five books – turning them from my well-used paperbacks to lovely hardbacks. I have about eight more books to go until I’ve completed the transition. And yet I know that they will be well loved to come as I know I will read them to my own daughter when she gets a little older.
Of course, this isn’t the first time that the characters of Julian, Dick, George, Anne and Timmy the dog have seen a live action transformation. Apparently in the 1970’s a TV series was produced, but I grew up with the 1990’s version. I loved the atmosphere to them and thrilling danger you know that lurks only moments away. They may seem a little cheesy now, but I bought the recent DVD of the 1990’s adaptation of the first book, Five on a Treasure Island.
It will be interesting to see how the film turns out. What book would they adapt for the silver screen? Would they keep the names the same? Would CGI be used to spice the adventure up? Of course, I understand the necessity to modernise the series to appeal to the children audience it is obviously going to aim for, but I hope things aren’t messed around with too much. It still needs to be set in the same time period, as this is one of the charms I loved so much.
Recent: I’ve recently had a press photo taken to promote Here Lies Love as well as my local library. When the piece is written, I will of course let you see it. I hope it isn’t too embarrassing I’m not very photogenic.
I would like to thank everyone who has so far purchased Here Lies Love. I’ve had more exposure and purchases than my previous adult novel The Caseworker’s Memoirs and the book has only been released for a month and a half. Unfortunately, it hasn’t made any of the Amazon charts, but that’s OK. If you haven’t purchased it yet, well why not!? A new second edition paperback will be released in the coming months, so if you cherish first editions, you may want to think about purchasing a copy soon.
I recently read A. Ka’s The Summer, which is book three in the Isaac The Fortunate series. You can read my review over on goodreads.
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