When i bought this for Kindle I realised I first read it in the early 60's. I enjoyed it then in late childhood, but on rereading now find myself marvelling at Richmal Crompton's gift for depicting vividly the behaviour, codes and perspective of young boys. Some of the arguments between William and his Outlaws in this book are outstandingly good pieces of comic dialogue. Her eye for the comedy of adult life features as well, notably in a masterful story featuring William's brother's desire to set up a society of (all male) poets, and the ensuing rivalry and politicking. Crompton was a shrewd observer, and the stories are never sentimental or naive. Crompton's use of language, and in particular perhaps the learned but never out of place vocabulary she uses, help to make these satisfying reading.