The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Travel -

Enid Bly­ton at Old Thatch Tess Liv­ing­stone (Con­nor Court, $19.95) TESS Liv­ing­stone, a jour­nal­ist with TheAus­tralian’s Bris­bane bureau, has an ob­vi­ous love of the work of chil­dren’s au­thor Enid Bly­ton. This small vol­ume is a homage to the writer and a vis­i­tor’s guide to the 17th-cen­tury thatched home at Bourne End (Peter­swood in her books) in Buck­ing­hamshire, 40km west of Lon­don, where Bly­ton lived from 1929 to 1938. As a young girl, Liv­ing­stone loved the Fa­mous Five and Se­cret Seven ad­ven­tures but it was Bly­ton’s Mys­tery se­ries that cap­ti­vated her. ‘‘ From a child’s per­spec­tive it seemed too much to hope that any of the places in the sto­ries . . . names like Mar­low, Taplow, Maiden­head, Sheep­ridge . . . ac­tu­ally ex­isted.’’ But they do, and to wan­der the vil­lages of the Thames Val­ley with this in­ti­mate guide­book would be a de­light for any Bly­ton fan. It is on sale at Old Thatch (open in sum­mer months) or via www.con­nor­ Susan Kuro­sawa

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