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The Children of Green Knowe (1954)

af L. M. Boston

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Serier: Green Knowe (1)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
1,6364210,619 (4.09)119
Tolly comes to live with his great-grandmother at the ancient house of Green Knowe and becomes friends with three children who lived there in the seventeenth century.

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Viser 1-5 af 42 (næste | vis alle)
This is such a charming, spooky, old-timey book. It is full of mysterious magic, but very little actual adventure or plot. Despite this I really enjoyed it and found the little boy and his grandmother a delightful pair. ( )
  mslibrarynerd | Jan 13, 2024 |
This was sweet, but it definitely could've been written better. There was very little action or plot, it was mostly the main character learning about his family history through stories and meeting the ghosts of his ancestors. The opportunity for an adventure scene only lasted about 10 pages or less, and I wished Green Knowe could've been built up more. It's literally what the novel and manor are named after. ( )
  Dances_with_Words | Jan 6, 2024 |
This is a hard one for me to review. I think if you read it as a child, it's going to have a really strong pull - it speaks to something about what it is to be a small, imaginative child, particularly a small, imaginative, only child, that I don't think I've ever seen represented in prose before. It's a favorite book of a close friend of mine, who read it when young, but I didn't read it for the first time until I was almost 30. It doesn't have the same pull for me - I don't really see how it could.

It's a relatively free-form story, almost a "sandbox" story in the way we talk about video games where characters can explore environments at will and at their own pace. Predominantly, it's about a young boy arriving to stay with his great-grandmother at Christmas, and exploring the house and grounds that have been in his family for over 400 years. He and the great-grandmother strike up a special relationship, and she tells him about a trio of his ancestors who lived as happy children in the same house. They died in the Great Plague, and soon, by playing with their toys and engaging in their games, the boy realizes that their ghosts are still there.

This is not a scary book, although there are one or two dark moments. The ghost children are kind presences, and the overall tone is a dreamy one that pushes gently toward whimsy. The protagonist, Tolly, is fascinated by everything he sees; his mind goes into overdrive as he imagines how his ghostly relatives were inspired by the same house, the same gardens, the same topiaries. He leaves sugar cubes for a legendary horse in the stable and pretends that a ceramic mouse is alive in his pocket. It isn't really a question whether or not he's dreaming, or whether or not the children are really there - it's all kind of a blur, without a lot of boundaries, and mostly we are simply aware that both Tolly and his grandmother are pleased by what they experience. There is a great love of the natural world, too; does it really matter if the squirrel and the mole and the hare that Tolly sees are the same ones those long-ago children named and tamed? No, it doesn't - everything is in its place and all's right with the world.

I'll be honest and say that I, personally, usually prefer a children's book with just a little bit more to it. I don't mind the "sandbox" idea of drifting without a really defined plot, but I think it would work better for me with some slightly more contrasting characters involved. The most enjoyable bits of the book, to me, are the rare ones where the gardener, Boggis, brings his somewhat earthy pragmatism into the "airy" world Tolly inhabits (and which his grandmother supports). There's a gentle conflict of personalities there that is very appealing without being abrasive in any way. Having one, more central character exhibit a stronger down-to-earth perspective, or even a dry sense of humor, would have punctured some of the "fairy tale"-ness that, for me, simply goes on too long without tonal variation. I can see how other people might like that undisturbed "golden glow," though.

Happily, I think the final quarter moves the story from merely good to very good, at least for me. The magic (or whatever you wish to call it) is at its height, and there's a sequence of genuine terror, offset by the joy of a Christmas Day that includes feeding all the animals who find their homes on the grounds. At that point I'm content to let the book be as dreamy and sweet as it wants to be without any further complaint: after all, it's Christmas! ( )
  saroz | Dec 28, 2023 |
A young boy (Tolly) visits his grandmother in an old English mannor house called Green Knowe. He meets and eventually befriends the ghosts of the long-dead children, who had lived in Green Knowe centuries before. ( )
  LarisaAWhite | Nov 18, 2021 |
It wasn't what I expected. Perhaps my opinion was tainted by memories of Pope's Sherwood Ring which caters more to girls. Or maybe it was Helquist, who, as whimsical and fantastic as he is, doesn't really prep you for the story you get. I'm rather sad that I didn't read this one first and, probably more important, that I didn't read it before I was 13 or so. Not that I wouldn't recommend it. It nicely alternates between action and a homey sort of style that really is perfect for evening storytelling. ( )
  OutOfTheBestBooks | Sep 24, 2021 |
Viser 1-5 af 42 (næste | vis alle)
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» Tilføj andre forfattere (7 mulige)

Forfatter navnRolleHvilken slags forfatterVærk?Status
Boston, L. M.primær forfatteralle udgaverbekræftet
Boston, PeterIllustratormedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
Butler, JohnOmslagsfotograf/tegner/...medforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
Paton Walsh, JillEfterskriftmedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
Vance, SimonFortællermedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
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Tolly comes to live with his great-grandmother at the ancient house of Green Knowe and becomes friends with three children who lived there in the seventeenth century.

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Gennemsnit: (4.09)
1 3
1.5 1
2 11
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3 55
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4 95
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