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What was held to be her banality generated controversy.

Some editions tweak the attitudes of Blyton’s time that now seem snobbish, or unsound about gender roles.

But Blyton’s are hardly alone among books of the 1930s-60s that enshrine social attitudes we now frown on; and as others go uncensored, we have become more laissez-faire about Blyton.

Book jackets now have period lettering of a kind they never had on first publication.

Not only is there the much-cited thrill of adventures without adults, but the language and manners have acquired charm.

In 2008 the Costa Book Award named Blyton the nation’s best-loved author in a poll of 2000 adults.

Blogs and websites now teem with collectors’ comments, enthusiasm from young readers, and fan fiction, including, for instance, only this month: “The Famous Five go to Hogwarts”.

This month Tony Ross has illustrated new editions of the Secret Seven books (in print since 1949) with extra features such as quizzes and Blyton’s handwritten plot edits.

Does all this suggest that Blyton is enjoying a renaissance and we are celebrating her as never before?

If you would like to date senior women or senior men specifically, make sure to adjust your criteria to reflect this preference.

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And that, as Joanna Lumley has said: “The days of Blyton-bashing are over”? Her books have sold over 500 million copies internationally.


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