Friday, February 25, 2011

Lost Enid Blyton Novel Comes to Light

A complete novel by beloved children’s author, Enid Blyton, has been discovered in a box of manuscripts bought by a UK children’s book center after the death of Blyton’s eldest daughter last year. From The Daily Mail:
Titled Mr Tumpy’s Caravan, the 180-page story tells the tale of a magical caravan and the travels of its inhabitants.

The children’s author, who has sold 500 million copies of books including the Secret Seven and Malory Towers series, was not known to have any unpublished material.
Though the manuscript is undated, it is labeled with an address that indicates this could be one of Blyton’s earliest works. However, her youngest daughter, Imogen Smallwood, feels it might have been written much later than that:
Miss Blyton developed dementia in her later years, and Mrs Smallwood believes the story could have been written towards the end of her life due to the ‘clumsy’ style.

She added: ‘I think it was not published because it wasn’t up to her old standard. She was getting very confused.

‘My daughter and I both think this one page that we’ve got shows a lot of effort, rather than the absolute free-flow that came from her fingers to her typewriter in those old days when she wrote several thousand words a day.’
Blyton, who died in 1968, was one of the most successful children’s storytellers of the 20th century. It is thought that she wrote approximately 800 books over a 40 year period.

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