Boarding school books, was: YotG along with other, off topic things.

Dorian E. Gray israfel at
Sat Sep 9 17:56:06 EDT 2000

Amaya asked...
> Having recently read all the Harry Potter books and re-read the
> books I've realised I'm a real sucker for English boarding school novels.
> Can anyone recommend any other than Enid Blyton?

Yes, but the vast majority of the genre is out of print.  Elinor M.
Brent-Dyer's "Chalet School" series is still in print - at least, some of it
is.  There are almost 70 books in this one series, and only some of them are
ever in print at any one time (I still need to track down 10 or so to
complete my collection).  They're slightly unusual, in that the series is
mostly set in mildly exotic locations; the first section is set in the
Austrian Tyrol (the school, I hasten to assure you, remains thoroughly
English throughout).  Then WWII breaks out and they relocate to the Channel
Islands.  Then the Welsh border, followed by a Welsh island, and then the
last section is set in Switzerland.  They're loads of fun.  Most fans feel
that the Tyrol segment is the best.

Other authors (that you will probably have to trawl second-hand bookshops
for) include Angela Brazil, Dorita Fairlie Bruce, Valerie Hastings,
Josephine Elder, Roberta Moss, and whatever your man's name is that wrote
"The Fifth Form at St. Dominic's" (it's some combination of Talbot, Reid and
Baines, but I can't remember in which order the three names go, and I can't
find my copy of the book).
> I've had "Tom Brown's School Days" by Thomas Hughes recommended but cannot
> find a copy anywhere. If you find an online bookstore that has a copy in
> stock please tell me ( was out of every print)

That's one of what you might call the prototypes of the genre.  It's not
bad, but (like St. Dominic's) it's a story about a boys' school, and what
I'm fanatical about is stories about girls' schools.  And no, I'm sorry, but
I have no idea where you might find a copy (I read my parents' copy).  But
since it's a "classic", it's unlikely to stay out of print for long.

Until the sky falls on our heads...

Dorian E. Gray
israfel at

"Some there be that shadows kiss
Such have but a shadow's bliss" -W. Shakespeare

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