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4.5 out of 5 stars
19
4.5 out of 5 stars
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on 5 June 2001
I fell asleep listening to this with my sister every night for about 5 years and I never got bored of it! It is a wonderfully funny story about a house that floats away down the street to the sea after weeks of rain. The house floats out to sea where the occupants, complaining Grandma, ditsy Mother, father, Morgan ( a really funny boy), the baby, and Tailcat (who spends his life avoiding the baby who is teething!), have great adventures with canibals. I really can't recomend this book enough, it is wondefully funny (particuarly the bits between Father and Grandma) and the only book I know that never got boring even after 5 years of continous listening!
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on 10 June 2003
I really enjoyed this book - it is one of my best books. It is a story of buried treasure, pirates and lots more scary things. They need to help each other to get themselves out of the mess. They need to find help - but do they get help? Do they get back home safely? Read the book to find out! This book is a put down with funny parts and scary tense parts. We all love this book especially when we read it at school - laughs were echoing around the classroom. It is a book of friendship, bravery and fortune.
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on 27 March 2010
When I read this story originally as an 8 year old, it wasn't Red Fox of course, but by ensuring repeat generations are able to read this wonderful book they are doing sterling service. If you are a parent/adult fretting about how to keep up the momentum for a boy who has gone through Harry Potter, Darren Shan, Anthony Horowitz and even the late, excellent children's author Douglas Hill and who is now drifting ominously back towards the idiot box in the corner or the latest mega-gore-slaughter-death IQ-murdering computer game, then find this, Pat Hutchins' finest hour. What's even better is that the story appeals equally to girls (e.g., me). I would also check out, How to Live Forever (though that is more for 2-6 years) by Colin THompson, THe Phantom Tollbooth and the incomparable Fattypuffs & Thinnifers (which I have also reviewed). These books deserve to be in every school library and every child's bookshelf. They are engaging, entertaining, well-written, witty, fun and funny. They also subtly engage children's thinking ability and help them to reason out moral quandaries.
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on 2 May 2003
I still have a dog-eared copy of this in my loft, but am investing in a new copy for my son.
The story of the family begins when, after a lot of rain, the house that Morgan and his family live in, breaks free from the street and sails away, leading to a great adventure.
The characters in this book are the richest and most memorable I ever came across as a child, and the humour and adventure is still very much relevant to today's Harry Potter-hungry generation.
Well worth its money - will be loved by all the family!
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on 30 January 2014
I confess huge bias here because I worked with Laurence Hutchins and our family was friends with theirs with children roughly the same ages. This was all some 35+ years ago and in spite of my bias, I still say that this beautifully written and quirkily illustrated book is brilliant for parents to show off their acting ability when reading it aloud to their children. The characters in it are all recognisable as from everyone's family, but the huge difference is they go off - accidentally at first with all that rain - and have terrifically exciting adventures, not like the rest of us at all.I'm writing this in the wettest January (2014) on record, which makes the beginning of Pat's book all the more relevant today. Buy it, act it out, and enjoy it!
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on 29 March 2014
I loved this book when I was younger so was keen to read it to my children. This time round it felt a little bit - Grandma said then Mummy said, so Daddy said. My kids didn't care and seemed quite taken by the story. Worth a read for a silly adventure.
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VINE VOICEon 15 June 2016
The House That Sailed Away is a fun children's story from the pen of Pat Hutchins first published in 1975 and still just as good over 40 years later. It is a nice easy read in short chapters totalling 160 pages and including illustrations by Laurence Hutchins. The illustrations have quite a lot of sharp angles so they are not the most sympathetic of drawings. The fact they exist though adds a little bit of black and white colour to the proceedings.

The plot of Sailed Away is simple enough for a young person to follow. it was captivating enough for a 5 year old to hear and want to enjoy more of Pat Hutchins work. At younger ages some of the humour may well pass over heads. There is quite a lot of mother-in-law humour directed against the Grandma character for her drinking and Yorkshire mannerisms. There are also some pretty funny moments involving the absent-minded Mother character. These jokes are probably best targeted at dads rather than children.

The unreasonable elements of the plot can easily pass by the younger audience - notably the cannibal savages of the Pacific. It also isn't entirely clear how the house managed to sail into the Pacific in just a matter of days. Still, for those caught up in the drama and excitement of the house being washed away in a storm and navigating the high seas while battling pirates and becoming stranded on a desert island while being caught up in a search for the Crown Jewels it is a lot of fun.

The narrative flows really easily and the characters are all quite distinguishable from one another so plenty of opportunity to voice them differently, especially the Yorkie accents. Characters recur in Pat Hutchins works so it is fun to spot Morgan for instance appearing in other books.

As a fun read for a young audience, The House That Sailed Away is a lot of fun. It still holds up 40 years after publication even if a book close to that age needs a bit more care. Good fun.
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on 21 June 2013
In my humble opinion this is the greatest book ever written. I remember being told at primary school that the greatest story ever told was the xmas nativity but that was a lie. Pirates, cannibals and a house that SAILS AWAY. What more could you wish for?
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on 17 January 2014
purchased this as a gift for my little niece. She loved reading it. She would like more books by this author as she thinks they are very good at writing childrens books.
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on 22 March 2016
My son adored this book and I purchased it for my god sons daughter. A firm favourite with every child. Fun for adults to read too.
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