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William the Outlaw - TV tie-in edition (Just William) Paperback – 5 Aug 2011
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Now with a fantastic redesigned cover to tie-in with the brand new BBC WILLIAM television series!
About the Author
Richmal Crompton was born in Lancashire in 1890. The first story about William Brown appeared in Home magazine in 1919, and the first collection of William stories was published in book form three years later. In all, thirty-eight William books were published, the last one in 1970, after Richmal Crompton’s death
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As another reviewer mentions, these books were originally written for adults, something which passed me by when I first read them, but which leaps to the eye now. William's good intentions, icy logic and sullen determination in the face of adults are a hilarious tribute to domestic mavericks everywhere.
If you haven't tried William before, then this is an excellent place to start - highly recommended.
Just a couple of minor quibbles on the Kindle edition - where there should have been illustrations, it just showed the word "Illustration" and the caption, and the chapters didn't start on an new page. I notice another reviewer did get the illustrations, so maybe my Kindle isn't set up right (though I did get the illustrations in another book). Anyway, I don't want to be too fussy, given the book is free and, I gather, was put together by volunteers.
There are still some brilliant bits, whole chapters even (the Christmas one is excellent), but overall, not the best collection of stories from over the years.
Although it is also obvious across many other William tales, it's something you realise the more William books you read, it did not seem a priority for Richmal Crompton to utilise and maximise William's gang - its members of course, Henry, Douglas and Ginger aka the Outlaws; these do not feature here as such (at least not in 'gang formation'), and the only other character who threatens to scream to the power of three (minus lisp and without throwing up ensuing) is a young boy, Thomas, and not the one forever associated with this threat, Violet Elizabeth - this young lady is nowhere to be seen, but we do get Joan Clive, and she is a lovely support character in the Christmas chapter.
There are better William books than this, and better collections of previously published stories; this is ok, just about, but the other books are better as they feature a less wilfully destructive version of the boy.
Maybe it's chilhood through rose-tinted spectacles or nostalgia for an age that never really existed but it chimes well with a belief that parents should be parents and that children should be allowed to be children - they are not savages, not to be wrapped in cotton-wool and not to be hidden away with IT devices.
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of my childhood ,just love them