Thursday, 18 April 2013

The Family at Red Roofs

‘’The Family at Red-Roofs’’
By Enid Blyton.

was the first proper story book that I read as a child …
… on my own , right through.
Hardly any pictures.
It was my favourite childhood book.
I was totally absorbed …
… by the family who moved into their new house …
… with the red roof.

Molly's first view of red Roofs

Molly, Peter and Shirley Jackson.
Daddy, Mother and Jenny-Wren the Maid (EB stories always had a Maid) …
… and their dog, Bundle (there was always a dog too)
It was quite weighty story line for a young girl.

The family move to the new house.
But they soon face disaster.
Daddy has to go away to America to work for six months.
Then Mother (always Mother, not Mummy) became very ill.
The ship taking their Daddy to America sank.
Daddy wasn't on the survivor list.
The news was kept from Mother whilst in hospital..

Yep, the price show my age ...

Facing separation the children and Jenny-Wren all rally round …
… each one taking little jobs to help bring in the money …
… to pay the bills at Red Roofs.
I still have the book.
It has a happy ending …
… obviously.

Mother got better and came home.
Daddy was found safe (had suffered amnesia in the sinking) and also came home.
Happy ever after.

Daddy's homecoming

I remembered the book over the years.
Actually re-read it a few years ago.
Anyway … I digress.
The post is really about the book title.
Red Roofs.
I never owned a dolls house as a child.
Never really hankered after one …
… until now.
Not to furnish and play with …
… no, truly.
But as decoration on a bedroom floor …
... under the window perhaps ...
… or to top a chest of drawers.

A neighbour was selling one.
Her Daddy made the house for her in the 1930/40’s.

My lovely hubby bought it for me as a surprise.
It has a red roof.
Just like the book.
The inside needs a little TLC...

(note the rather large light switch on the left)

(A 1960's addition Barbie pink loo and outsize lamp shades!)

... but for now ...
The house with the red roof sits on a chest of drawers.

In our dining room.


Do you remember your first proper story book?


  1. I was initially going to comment to say that I collect Enid Blyton books and that this one is a beauty, but as I carried on reading I thought... oh wow. What a gorgeous doll's house! What an adventure you're going to embark on in furnishing your first one. It's truly the most fun hobby I have ever had. More of an addiction really! Enjoy your mini adventures.

    Anna x

  2. ~ What a lovely post, I really enjoyed reading it.....I don't remember this special book, but I did fall in LOVE with Enid Blyton's 'Far away tree'...I was quite small and my big sister used to help me read it! Lucky YOU...a dolls house to match those wonderful memories from the book and what a thoughtful husband! I remember I did own a second hand dolls house....I used to share it with my sister and after I grew out of it, Mum sold it on to a younger girl up the street :( Wish she hadn't now I see yours ) But in those days if you wanted some thing new....very often you had to sell some thing to make room and pennies for this..( I sound so old). haha! Enjoy! Can't wait to read more...A lovely post indeed! Maria x

  3. Looooved Enid Blyton but never read this one - was probably a bit too gritty for me, I was more of a Cherry Tree Farm girl! But whoa there - what a house. The red roof is stunning and then you have the wonderful detail of the fireplace with the grate - you are going to have so much fun with this! Keep us posted x Jane

  4. That is so gorgeous, I want to climb inside and have a nap! x

  5. How adorable is that house?.... I think I read that favourite by EB was the 'twins at Mallory towers' series!
    thanks for the peep at the book
    Daisy J

  6. How adorable is that! I love the illustrations

  7. I read Enid Blyton too. The Magic Faraway Tree. Silky, Moonface and Saucepan man ... if I remember correctly. I never came across the Red Roofs but it looks fabby as does the house. ... Sarah x

  8. O such lovely memories!! I adored Enid Blyton, I guess my first books were about Noddy, and my first TV was Bill and Ben......I also had a very similar dolls house, except it had proper battery run lights in every room......brilliant!

  9. We didn't get a lot of Enid Blyton here in Canada, but my best friend's parents were British and she let me read her collection. My favourite was something about six bad boys and how the one bad boy finally reformed in the end (of course!). Then I had a few given to me from someone for my own kids, and the red roof house book was one of them. Great storyteller :D Love your little dollhouse, it has so much potential. It looks like the daddy of the dollhouse is still lost at sea, and the place has fallen into a bit of disrepair. Hope he returns soon to work on the house! Have a great week. Wendy
    PS I love it when people digress ...

  10. How wonderful, your very own house with a red roof! What an interesting book, I loved the faraway tree books by Enid Blyton, retread them often as a child, tried to read them to my girls too, they were scared stiff by Dame Slap, I didn't by the politically correct version! :) x


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