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THE BOY NEXT DOOR Hardcover – 1958

4.4 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Collins; Reprint edition (1958)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000MIMX82
  • Product Dimensions: 18.2 x 12.6 x 2.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 765,768 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Reprint. Clean but toned pages with owner address to front pastedown. Boards have corners bumped with sun fadd spine ends. DJ has tears and chipping to corners/spine ends.

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I loved this story as a 7 year old child. I found it compared very favourably with any of the Famous Five series, and any of the other individual stories I subsequently read.
It contains a clever plot with some surprising twists, all told at an exciting pace. There are moments of real suspense here.
The main character of the story is an American boy called Kit, who is brought to England by his guardian to escape from his 'wicked uncle', whom it is believed is behind an unsuccessful kidnap attempt. Kit stands to inherit the fortune of his missing-presumed-dead father, and this has tempted his uncle to attempt to ransom the boy.
Kit's adventures in England make entertaining reading for a 7-11 year old. The ironies of the plot are intricate for a children's book, and add colour to the tale.
The chapter illustrations are good, some of them being very atmospheric. They belong to a bygone age that should appeal to the more imaginative child whose mind has not been totally polluted by modernity.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Arrived early, very cracked spine and pages but that's to be expected
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Format: Hardcover
My mum bought me this some time in the 50s and I remember reading it while staying at my granny's farm in Yorkshire, settled in a barn among the straw bales and being totally absorbed. Most books for children then didn't bear much similarity to my life as a council-house kid but that was an attraction for me. Other kids may have escaped into the fantasy world of CS Lewis but these three middle-class siblings (two boys and a girl), with their boarding-school background, were just as exotic to me - with the difference that I knew that in some form or other, they existed. Even more exotically, an American kid moves in next door (I'd only seen them in films). The people looking after him don't seem very nice; one of them is nicknamed The Dragon and although the children have encountered him, she insists that there is no boy at the house. However, they find secret ways of meeting, and eventually a houseboat becomes a bolt-hole, but there have to be ways of keeping their activities from the adults without resorting to lying. Of course, it being Enid Blyton, there has to be at least one adult villain hatching a dastardly plot.
Some years ago I read it to one of my grandchildren and I was surprised that, in the age of Harry Potter, he still found it an engrossing tale. Forget the adult sensibilities about class structure or archaic language; if we can watch stuff set hundreds of years ago, why shouldn't our kids read stuff set in their grandparents' time? It's all about the timeless theme of kids finding their own space, away from us killjoy oldies.
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Format: Paperback
Enid Blyton's wonderful Famous Five and Secret Seven series are ever popular and always in print. The Faraway Tree books (4, if you include "Up The Faraway Tree") are year in year out in the Top Ten Children's Story Books Of All Time, voted by the public. Her books catch the imagination of children of all ages. She once replied knowingly to criticism "I know what children want". This undeservedly less well known "The Treasure Hunters" is proof that Enid knows what children want. It's her best book, reaching new heights of excitement even for this prodigious author and reading it will make you feel that "it's good to be alive". "The Boy Next Door" in my opinion isn't on a par, comparatively it's mundane and it's not an "adventure tale" at all (hence my 4 stars are only because the two stories are coupled together in this edition. Later, if you purchase this volume you may wish you had purchased "The Treasure Hunters" in a stand alone volume rather than this 2-in-1.

"The Treasure Hunters" in brief: Two brothers and their sister / happy and resourceful / and Rags the terrier / holiday at their grandparents Manor house / Manor soon having to be sold, hard times for the grandparents / great kids, they play and explore the Manor's grounds / landscapes, woods, farm, hills, stream / find hidden overgrown summerhouse in woods beside pond / make it idyllic / find box in chimney / cryptic treasure map / long lost Greylings treasure / follow clues / bad guys, would be purchasers of Manor / they would take advantage of grandparents / they know kids onto something /good grandparents and the bad guys confound kids efforts / night adventures / lift flagstone, into the hill / breathless / Rags helps / out of their depth / ..then / ..
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Format: Paperback
I first read this book about 35 years ago at school and have recently discovered it again.Memories of happy days returned. I think you will find the story excellent.
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Format: Hardcover
One of Enid Blyton's finest adventure stories. I first read this as a boy of 10 and was thoroughly captivated by it. Having now read it again, to my two youngest daughters (12 and 6), I have not been disappointed and my children have been gripped from chapter to chapter. It may have dated, is completely implausible and takes place in an England that probably never really existed, but these, along with Gilbert Dunlop's fabulous illustrations, are things which only add to the warmth and charm of this wonderful book.
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