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The Famous Five is the name of a series of children's novels written by British author Enid Blyton. The first book, Five on a Treasure Island, was published in 1942.
The novels feature the adventures of a group of five children (well, four children and a Team Pet) — Julian, Dick, Anne, Georgina (George), and the dog Timmy. Blyton created several similar groups for her detective series, including The Secret Seven, The Adventurous Four (not to be confused with The Adventure Series) and Five Find-Outers, but the Famous Five is the best-known and most popular of these.
Blyton only intended to write about 6 to 8 books in the series but, owing to their high sales and immense commercial success, she went on to write 21 full-length Famous Five novels. By the end of 1953, more than 6 million copies of these books had been printed and sold. Today, more than two million copies of the books are sold each year, making them one of the biggest-selling series for children ever written. Over a hundred million books have been sold, and nearly all of the novels have subsequently been adapted for television.
This series includes examples of
- Adaptation Decay: Positively. They removed the idea that the Five are nosey kids sneaking into places they shouldn't be.
- Adventure Towns: the children seemingly cannot go anywhere without having a new adventure.
- Comic Book Time: 21 adventures all occurring during the holidays of boarding school.
- Food Porn: famous for the lavish descriptions of the gang's (many) meals.
- Gender Equal Ensemble: The human members of the Five make up this. Timmy tips it in favour of males.
- Heroes Love Dogs: Sort of - one of the heroes is a dog, and the other four love him.
- No Name Given / Only One Name: Averted with Toddy Woodgate, Timmy's actor (not voice actor, actor) in the series. Like most dogs with surnames, he takes his handler's.
- Police Are Useless: Because when it's a group of five teenagers and a dog that are finding all the clues and solving all the crimes, you know the police in Blyton-Land can't handle even the simplest of problems.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: George and Anne respectively.
- George is a tomboy. She has short curly hair styled in a typical haircut for boys. She dresses like a boy, typically in "jeans and jersey". She insists on everyone calling her by the masculine form of her name, a decision respected by her parents and teachers. She is athletic, the best of the group at swimming, handling boats and driving caravans. She is often mistaken for a boy and takes great pleasure in it. She rarely cries, going by the mantra "boys don't cry". She is "brave" and "fierce". Her mother insists on her performing domestic chores but George has no taste for it.
- Anne is not given an actual description but is often described as traditionally feminine in both looks and behavior. She scares easily and at times seeks protection next to her older brothers (Julian, Dick) and cousin (George). She cries often and feels no evident shame about it. She enjoys domestic chores and activities, "playing house" as George observes. She likes to keep "everything very clean" and actually volunteers to clean up. Her brother Julian even describes her as "a good little house-wife". In her first appearance she proclaims "I like pretty frocks - and I love my dolls", activities scorned by George. She is the one picking flowers while the others are searching for arrow-heads. She is not athletic and is noted as the worst swimmer among them.