The Enchanted Wood by Enid Blyton

I am totally besotted with anything Enid Blyton. And even within her huge body of works, the Magic Faraway Tree is one of my favorites since this also falls under one of my favorite genres – fantasy. Enchanted Wood is the beginning of the series. For me, fantasy is about the wonder in discovering the new worlds. This being the first book is the one where we discover the Faraway Tree, the folks who live on it and the magic associated with it. Of course, the wonder remains throughout this series because new lands keep coming on top of the Faraway Tree. So throughout the series, there are new lands to discover. That way for a reread, these stories kind of lose their value once you know what land.

But this was a book I had missed during my childhood. I had read it 4 years back. But I had forgotten most of it. So it was possible to enjoy it all over again. There isn’t much of character development and stuff. But this book is not about the characters. It is a pure magical world the reader is transported to. So it is the reader who is visiting all these interesting worlds. The characters just don’t matter. The fairy characters are actually interesting – Silky is sensible and conciliatory, Moon Face is goodhearted but impulsive and foolhardy, Sauce Pan Man is crazy. It is the human characters who are more stereotypical. But as I said who cares. It is the wood and the tree and the lands that come on top of the tree that is the real stuff.

I won’t go into the specifics of the magic of the tree and the lands as that would take away the fun of the read.

On an aside, the concept of this kind of tree was possibly inspired by Yggdrasil of Norse myth. The Magic Faraway Tree even has a squirrel-like Ratatoskr. The inspiration is also likely since Blyton was into mythology. She has retold Greek myth and Arabian nigh tales for children.

Contributed by: Karthik Lakshminarayanan‎

Click here to visit his Amazon Author Page. 

Pic Courtesy: Wikipedia

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