Thursday, November 17, 2011

Shock for the Secret Seven

Photo Credit:  Enid Blyton Society

If I could just forget Helena Bonham Carter and her performance in Enid, I could probably cozy up to Enid Blyton's books -- especially those boarding school ones.

My second outing with Blyton was grand.  I liked Shock for the Secret Seven ever so much better than Puzzle for the Secret Seven.  First of all, there's that nifty publication date, 1961.  Secondly, it seems as if there's a lot more drama in this one.  Peter, who is frighteningly Type A for such a young lad, gets a little too caught up in Secret Seven meeting protocol and provokes Jack into quitting.  The others shame Peter into writing a note of apology (he makes them all sign it -- Scamper the dog, too) but Jack icily replies:

"Dear Secret Six,
Thank you for your note and apology from Peter.  Sorry, but there's nothing doing.  I'm finished with you.  I'm forming a club with Susie [his bratty sister] Binkie [her equally bratty friend], Bony [A French exchange student] and three others.  We'll be the Secret Seven -- and you'll be the Secret Six.

Oooooh.  Sick burn.

Right after Peter and the gang decide to struggle onward without Jack, a mystery pops up in their little village. Someone is a dognapper, and this person is stealing expensive and valuable dogs.  Among many others, Pam's grandmother's white poodle goes missing, Matt the shepherd's collie Shadow disappears, and then dear old Scamper vanishes in broad daylight while the Secret Sev...Six are having a meeting and trying to figure out who the thief is.  Meanwhile, Jack (who has decided that he'd rather go it alone than form a new Secret Seven) is on the case, and he cracks it wide open.  As Blyton says, "Good old Jack!  Good old everybody!"

Jack graciously accepts Peter's invitation to return to the group, which changes that pesky Six back into Seven and saves the series.  As for the villain, let's just say that I was left with a bad impression of both the Royal Mail and men with small feet.  Oh well, it's nothing that can't be fixed by some gorgeous hot buns and a cup of steaming cocoa.


Beth said...

I have a soft spot for the Secret Seven ever since I read one in Greek (modern Greek). I think it's the only non-picture book I ever finished in a second language.

And the word verification for today is PRATS. How apt for a post about English school kids. Sorta.

Unruly Reader said...

This sounds excellent. Makes me want to be age 10 again, just so I could read this book as a kid. I'd'a gone nuts for it.