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<--Pratchett/"Discworld" Dave Duncan-->
We've arrived at my absolute favourite kid's series -- the books that made me the Anglophile i am to this day, and that have apparently warped the minds of several SF authors,
of whom David Weber is not the last nor <possibly> least.

((Click here for my notes on the Swallows & Amazons books.))
Swallows & Amazons The first of the canon
Swallowdale Further adventures of the Swallows & Amazons
Including a shipwreck.
{Use link at left to order from Amazon UK}
Winter Holiday Important new characters are introduced.
Also, an expedition to the North Pole
Pigeon Post Gold-mining, carrier pigeons, claim-jumpers,
water-dowsing & a really Impressive fire.
{Not currently available in US}.
The Picts & the Martyrs
Not Welcome At All
What to do when you're properly invited
but the watch-gorgon doesn't know you are.

Figuratively speaking, anyway.

If Nancy Blackett is your host.
[Available from Amazon UK]
We Didn't Mean to Go to Sea A first-class adventure with some truly
hair-raising dangers and true heroism;
four children forced to
sail a yacht they barely know across
the North Sea in a full gale.
[Available from Amazon UK]
Secret Water Mapping a hidden inland sea, meetings
with "cannibal 'natives'", and a thrilling hairsbreadth
escape from sharing the fate of Pharoah's Army.
[Available from Amazon UK]

Great Northern? Protecting Very Rare Birds from a "naturalist", while
also trying to prove they're really there.
Throw in problems with a more-or-less
feudal Scots Laird...
"'Dogmudgeon' is a lovely word..."
[Available from Amazon UK]
Coot Club This is the first of a two-book set that i consider a
"side series" -- two of the cast have separate adventures in the Norfolk Broads.

Bird Protection and Chase & Adventure.
The Big Six Sequel to "Coot Club":
More unjust accusations and Chase & Adventure.
And a Really Big Fish.
I mean
{Available thru Amazon UK as a special order}.
Peter Duck Swallows & Amazons Apocrypha:
Supposedly a yarn the children from the series spin,
featuring themselves in seagoing adventure, with Pirates and Treasure.
Missee Lee Swallows & Amazons Apocrypha:
More pirates -- Chinese, this time, led by a Cambridge-educated Chinese Pirate Queen.
((Nancy & Peggy's Uncle Jim went to Oxford))
A horrendous fire at sea.
{Available from Amazon UK}

A Couple of Notes:
About The  "Swallows & Amazons" Books Themselves

The "Swallows & Amazons" books were written ((from about 1928 to 1948)), by an Oxford-educated journalist and world-traveller, who did not believe in "writing down to his audience", as so many modern children's authors seem to, to be read by British children of what we here in the US would consider about Third through Eighth Grade levels ((based on the apparent ages of the protagonists)).  While perfect in content and narration for that audience, they are written at a vocabulary level which is, shall we say, a bit higher than what is often considered normal reading levels for most if not all of that age-span in the US today, and Very British in much of the terminology ((particularly the "LSD" pre-decimal money)).

On the other hand, anyone who has managed to read, say, the "Narnia" books, or Diana Wynne Jones's wonderful books for a similar audience, will have no trouble at all with these -- the concepts and vocabulary
levels are about equivalent.

I began reading them when i was about eight, and had no real problems with vocabulary or context ((except for not having the faintest idea of the meaning of the phrase "round as a football"...)), so...

About Those Cultural Assumptions

At least two of these books -- "Peter Duck" and "Missee Lee" -- exhibit the cultural attitudes of their day pretty well.
In "PD", black pearls are referred to as "niggers", though i don't believe the term is anywhere else used in the series.
In "ML" the Chinese pirates are pretty much typical early "Terry & the Pirates"-type warlords, coolies and so on -- but Missee Lee herself, forced to cut short her Cambridge education and return to China to take her father's place as "Twenty-one gun Taicoon", and trying to make part of China a little bit of Cambridge, is a priceless character.

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