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===Cost and Editions===
RRP: £5.99 but currently selling for £4.19 on Amazon
Paperback: 208 pages.
Hodder Children's Books; New Ed edition (19 Mar 1997).
There are many other editions of this book and as well as possibly being able to download a PDF version you can listen to the while thing for free on Youtube as an audio book.
The third Famous Five adventure, featuring siblings Julian, Dick, Anne, cousin George (real name Georgina) and her dog Timmy.
This story revolves around the summer holidays, with the three siblings staying with their cousin George. George's mother is taken ill and taken to hospital and the children are left to the mercy of a wicked housekeeper. The children end up running away and discovery and solve a mystery.
This is the third story in the series of 'Famous Five' books and was written in the 1940s.
The Famous Five are three siblings, their cousin and a dog.
This adventure, like the first two, is based in Cornwall and centred around Kirrin Cottage where George lives and also Kirrin Island which is also owned by George.
The story takes place in the summer holidays when the three siblings visit to stay with their cousin.
George's mother Fanny is taken ill and goes off to hospital with uncle Quinten, leaving the children to the mercy of the nasty cook Mrs Stick, her unpleasant son Edgar, and also her husband.
Things go from bad to worse and the children end up running away. Whilst in hiding they stumble upon an adventure and, as is usual, they end up solving it for the police.
Some people claim these stories are dated. But personally for books written almost seventy years ago I do not find there is any problem with the language in this book - the only thing I did notice a little odd is that Enid Blyton refers to things being 'lighted' rather than 'lit' as we would say today.
The children of course do seem to be middle class - coming from boarding schools and with their aunt Fanny always employing a cook - not a normal household of average people. Julian is even able to ring a bell to summon the cook to the dining room - very posh!
However there is nothing too out of our time to cause problems with these stories.
The main themes of these books are always the children getting away from the adults - to have exciting times on their own.
In this story, without giving away too much of the plot, the children hatch a plan to get away from the awful Stick family - and they manage to source food supplies, work out what they will need, and execute their escape.
While away they each have different roles - Julian is the eldest and most mature, Dick is often in the background, George is very masculine in her outlook and behaviour, while Anne, the youngest, is the most childlike and prone to being scared. Anne is also the one who likes playing with dolls and who is the little home-maker. There is a lovely description of her making their hideaway all domesticated and homelike. I can remember enjoying making little 'homes' like that myself.
Julian seems more mature at the start of this story - standing up very well to the Sticks at Kirrin Cottage when his aunt and uncle are away. Julian is shown as being more intelligent and quick witted than the Stick family who are portrayed as ignorant and unintelligent and so with a quick turn of phrase Julian can run rings around them.
While in hiding there are some comic interludes when the children play tricks on some villains - all funny and exciting.
I do not think that they are too dated for children to read these days - or to read to them.
Children hopefully still retain the thirst for adventure and to be free of the shackles imposed by the adults in their world, so what could be more exciting than to go on adventures, have a trusted dog to protect you and also some older boys to keep a protective eye on you as well.
It portrays an innocent way of life where good flourishes over evil. It may not necessarily be the same in the real world but that is no reason to not enjoy this escapism.
This is am interesting story and more similar to the first in the series. Personally I think I preferred the second one so far with its secret tunnels and sliding panels.
===Would I Recommend?===
===Full Famous Five Series===
Five on a Treasure Island (1942)
Five Go Adventuring Again (1943)
Five Run Away Together (1944)
Five Go to Smuggler's Top (1945)
Five Go Off in a Caravan (1946)
Five on Kirrin Island Again (1947)
Five Go Off to Camp (1948)
Five Get into Trouble (1949)
Five Fall into Adventure (1950)
Five on a Hike Together (1951)
Five Have a Wonderful Time (1952)
Five Go Down to the Sea (1953)
Five Go to Mystery Moor (1954)
Five Have Plenty of Fun (1955)
Five on a Secret Trail (1956)
Five Go to Billycock Hill (1957)
Five Get into a Fix (1958)
Five on Finniston Farm (1959)
Five Go to Demon's Rocks (1960)
Five Have a Mystery to Solve (1962)
Five Are Together Again (1963)
This really is one of my favourite Famous Five stories.
The plot takes place in Georges Family home of Kirrin Cottage. This particular novel is the third in the series and tells the story of George, her dog Timmy, and her three cousins Dick, Julian and Anne. The family have hired a cook called Mrs Stick to help Georges Mother as she isnt feeling well. She brings with her her son called Edgar who, immature for his age taunts George and Timmy with their mongrel.
One day whilst out they come home to find Mrs Kirrin has been taken to the hospital, not long after Mrs Stick brings her rogue of a husband to stay. They treat the five unfairly, giving them leftovers to eat whilst they eat the finest food themselves. My favourite chapter is when Julian, the oldest of the four children takes Timmy and demands a decent meal taking the Stick's own dinner. Not wanting to stay in the house much longer without her mother, and with the Stick's unpleasantness George decides to run away and stay on the Island until her mother returns, Julian however catches her before she leaves and they decide to all go.
When they arrive however they are joined by the Stick family who are unaware that they are not alone on the island. There the Five discover the Sticks Secret!
I loved and still do the way the five all pack up and live on the island on a cave, it was one of the things I really wanted to do when I was a child, I still do. Especially the way they make it all homely.
I cannot recommend this book enough, not only the adventure but the humour too!
Third up on the list is 'Five Run Away Together'. First published in 1944 and still going on strong over 60 years later! Amazing non? The book in question is of course the third installment in the hugely successful children's book series written by the late Enid Blyton. Based on the adventures of siblings Julian, Dick and Anne, their cousin George and her mongrel dog Timmy, this book uses the tried and tested formula of George's parents home of Kirrin Cottage and Kirrin Island as its setting and is merely a rehash of the previous book 'Five Go Adventuring Again' due to the fact that George's parents again hire strangers to work in the house who turn out to be criminals...
This time it's the Stick family. Mother, father, spoilt, cowardly son Edgar and their dog Tinker [or as the children affectionately dub him Stinker]. Hired by George's father Uncle Quentin to help out around the house as George's mother is extremely ill with scarlet fever, the Sticks are actually part of a smuggling plot
As Aunt Fanny is rushed to hospital, the children are left in the care of the ghastly Sticks and decide to take matters into their own hands and go camping on Kirrin Island. However, they soon discover that the Sticks are in hot pursuit, having robbed the entire house and brought most of its possessions with them. Originally believing that the family have come to the island to bring them back, the children soon discover that the Sticks are smugglers and are living on the island whilst they wait to receive something valuable...
The story is a lot more grown up and fast paced than its predecessors though Blyton doesn't stray from her usual method of portraying stereotypical characters and language that is both easy to read and understand. The children's numerous showdowns with the Stick family for things such as food and house room add some strong comedy moments to the book. The magical energy that comes from each page is still evident as is Blyton's knack for penning a deep and puzzling mystery and making the pieces of the puzzle fold together bit by bit over the course of the story.
Again some of the references are a bit dated. I remember not knowing what on earth scarlet fever was when I first read the book and some of the language means entirely different things to what it did at the time of the book's peak in popularity, but whereas such a thing could hinder the reading process, it does little to distract from the overall pull of the story here.
Whilst it's not one of the best books in the Famous Five series, it's still good enough to keep you entertained and pulled into their world.
Five Run Away Together is the third book in the series of 21 books written by Enid Blyton, telling the adventures of the Famous Five. The books are considered some of the most magical children's literature ever. The Famous Five are Julian, Dick and Anne Kirrin, their cousin George (Georgina) Kirrin and her dog Timmy.
In Five Run Away Together, the children are once again reunited at Kirrin Cottage, the home of George's parents, Quentin and Fanny Kirrin. George's parents are forced away and the children are left in the care of Mrs Stick the housekeeper. Her son and dog are living in the house, and the Five cannot stand them, and soon they sneak off to George's island in Kirrin Bay to get away and have a fun holiday. However, strange lights and mysterious night visits to the island plunge the Five into adventure once again.
This is not my favourite Famous Five book, but it is still very good nonetheless. The writing style of Enid Blyton is naturally geared towards children, and as such it is very easy to read. The story does not flow as easily as other Famous Five tales, but at 180 pages of easy reading, this does not show much. These are ideal books for your children to read. This one, the third in the series, was originally published in 1944.