Monday, July 25, 2011

'School Stories' by Elinor M. Brent-Dyer

Publisher: Parragon Books

ISBN: 0-7525-0912-8

Length: 384 pages

What the 'blurb' says:

'The School at the Chalet'- Madge Bettany's plan to start a school in the mountains of the Austrain Tyrol is very exciting for her younger sister Joey, for she will be the first pupil. Joey knows- that all sorts of new adventures are in store for her, but even she can'r guess at the wonderful future that lies ahead for the Chalet School.'

'Jo of the Chalet School'- The Chalet School now boasts over thirty pupils- including the enchanting Robin. The autumn term sees adventures of all kinds- a flood that threatens the school and the dramatic rescue of an unwanted St Bernard puppy- and ends with happiness of a very special kind for Madame Bettany.'

Opening Line: "If only I knew what to do with you girls!" said Dick in worried tones.'

What's good about this novel?

Not being a fan of children's novelists such as Enid Blyton, I had trepidations about whether or not I was going to enjoy this book.

However, this 2 book novel is utterly charming, without being too over sentimental. The characters are likeable and the plot was mature enough to keep my attention.
Even though this is for children, Elinor M. Brent- Dyer does not patronise her audience. In fact most of the time, this novel read as if it were for a young adult/adult audience.

This book not only takes the reader back to a time of a more innocent, simplier child hood, but also transports you to a different culture and landscape. The descriptions of the countryside and mountains within this novel are beautiful.

What's wrong with this novel?

'School Stories' is a novel of a different time, so occasionally I found the word order of some of the sentences to be slightly strange. However, I think that in some ways, this added to the novel's charm.

Is this worth a read?

If you want to read something light and fun, then this book may be for you. It's not quite as sickly sweet as Enid Blyton, but still has a sense of adventure about it. So if you are/were never a fan of Enid Blyton, you may enjoy this.

Have you ever read the 'Chalet School' books? Or do you prefer Enid Blyton?


  1. A good review. Sometimes, taking a peek into 'times past' is refreshing.

  2. As always, your review is great :)