The Early Years at Malory Towers (Books 1-3)
Author: Enid Blyton
Genre: Children’s/Middle School, Fiction
Originally Published: 1987
Format: Kindle (576 pages)
Synopsis: The new bumper volume of classic children’s stories from the world’s best-loved children’s author, Enid Blyton. Malory Towers is about everything school should stand for – friendships, lessons, sports, plays and especially mischief.
Darrell Rivers is off to a new boarding school, Malory Towers in Cornwall. But will she fit in there? And what adventures will she have? These first three books chronicle Darrell and her friends’ first years at the school- three years of mischief, mayhem and midnight feasts!
My Rating: ★★★★★
Talk about stepping straight back into my childhood! As an 8/9 year old girl, I absolutely adored everything about the Malory Towers series by Enid Blyton. I was obsessed with wanting to go to school there. I loved the idea of living in school with my best friends, I could only imagine all the mischief we would get up to! I also desperately loved the Matron, Mrs Potts and the other teachers. You can only imagine my disappointment as a young girl to discover this was fictional!
These books are light-hearted, fun and entertaining, but reading them back as an adult I also realise how many life lessons I learnt from these books. They easily cover many adolescent struggles: jealousy over new siblings and friends, learning to deal with anger, being kind to others, the importance of honesty and integrity, honour, selflessness – to name a few.
None of the girls in these books are perfect. Many of them have flaws. Sally struggles with jealousy, Alicia lacks empathy, Mary-Lou is fearful of many things and Darrell has to work constantly to remain in control of her temper. Reading these again has made me realise that I learnt a huge amount from these books as a young girl and I feel really lucky that I read them at such a young age.
What did I love most about the book?
I always loved school. What better way to spend the day than to be with friends all day? So as a young girl, the idea of living in school with my best friends was a huge dream to me. I desperately wanted to go to Malory Towers and I think my favourite thing about these books is the positive way in which school is portrayed. Despite many challenges, the girls see Malory Towers as their home. It’s a safe place where they can have countless hours of fun with friends under the watchful eyes of teacher who the girls love dearly. As a teacher myself, I only wish the media did more these days to show more positivity towards education and school. There are so many kids that hate being in school and they don’t realise these are some of the best years of their lives! Malory Towers definitely helped fuel my passion for school and I’m thankful for that.
Rereading these has been such a treat. I was surprised by how many details from the stories I could remember. They were a very quick and easy read and reminded me dearly of why I was such an avid reader at a very young age. Before J.K. Rowling came along, Enid Blyton was my favourite author. I was obsessed with her books but Malory Towers was the first series I truly loved and I think I’ll always have a place in my heart for it.
What are your favourite childhood stories?