the Wishing Chair
I’ve fallen behind on my challenge. A lot behind. I started to struggle with a couple of Enid’s books and decided to get back into it. This was June’s choice and I have fallen in love with this. I had to remember this is a book for children and to not be as critical over as I was with the enchanted wood which felt a bit strange. I’m convinced I read this as a child but I can’t remember. The illustrations look so familiar and the chair growing wings brought something back. I’ll get on to that a bit more in a moment but here’s part of a review I found which summed it up completely.
The Story: (Goodreads)
Once Mollie and Peter have discovered the Wishing-Chair, their lives are full of adventure. It takes them to all sorts of magical places, from the giant's castle where they rescue Chinky the Pixie, to the amazing party at Magician Greatheart's castle.
What others thought:
‘People seem to think that using simple English is talking down to children or having a rather simplistic story line is somehow patronizing to kids. Which seems to be the more common complaints against Miss Blyton.
I strongly disagree with this reasoning. Sometimes kids need a simple story so they can grasp it easily and get straight to the fantasy. Sometimes they just need a book that doesn't seek to teachthem a bunch of words. Using simple English doesn't necessarily mean patronizing, it's often far easier for the child to be immersed in the story. Immersed being the key word there.
Enid Blyton has this knack for knowing a child's wildest fantasies and tapping into their desires. Her simple but direct manner of writing is easy for a young child to get into and there's a sort of whimsy and wonder found in her words.
Her worlds offer a place of escape for the child and the simple manner it is delivered makes it easy for the child to immerse themselves into whatever faraway world is on offer.
I think that's why she's so endearing even to modern audiences. Her books offer all the places of magic and wonder we were already wishing to travel to in our youth.’
“We have been given two ears and only one mouth, so you should talk only as half as much as you hear - Mollie
This is so far one of my favourites besides the brownie book. I loved it. From the moment Mollie and Peter go in search for something for their Mother’s birthday and wonder off into a shop to find it run by a wizard, almost made me wonder if J.K. Rowling had read Enid Blyton’s work as a child.
The children get scared by the little man in the shop and end up sitting on a chair and are very frightened when suddenly Peter says ‘Oh, I do wish we were back home’ only for the chair to sproutwings and fly out the window. They land safely back home and decide to leave the chair hidden in the playroom. After that day they wait for it to grow wings and fly off for an adventure where they rescue Chinky - the elf/pixie - which then leads to lots of magical adventures. They gain a new friend; learn to be careful what they wish for. Because sometimes they landed in some rotten places. They discover the rewards from helping each other out, even complete strangers. That how we treat each other is important and we shouldn’t be horrid to each other because we’re not happy or don’t get what we want.
This is a fantastic adventure - at some points it was too fast for me but if I was reading this as a child I wouldn’t want to stop nor get whoever reading it to me to stop. So please pick it up and read it and meet the wonderful characters as I don’t want to give too much away.
Oh and one last thought, I like the idea of fairies being at the bottom of the garden. One day I might find them.
Check out The Enid Blyton Society page for more history on the book
Dec - The Twins at St Clare's
Nov - The Mystery of the Pantomime Cat
Oct - The Naughtiest School Girl
Sep - Mr Galliano’s Circus
Aug - The Boy Next Door
Jul - Adventures of the wishing Chair
Jun - The Magic Faraway Tree
May - The Enchanted Wood
Apr - The Adventures of Scamp
Mar - Secret Seven
Feb - Five on a treasure Island
Jan - The Book of Brownies
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