Friday, 23 January 2009

The Wolves of Willoughby Chase

In a Sunday Times supplement on children's fiction the other day, someone was singing the praises of "The Wolves of Willoughby Chase" by Joan Aiken. I too would like to sing its praises, but possibly for slightly different reasons. The synopsis, very briefly is as follows:
Young orphan gets sent to live with Aunt and Uncle, who promptly sod off on some sort of overseas trip by boat, leaving orphan Sylvia and cousin Bonnie in the "care" of a strict governess (oh yeah..!), various things happen and eventually the girls get packed off to an orphanage cum workhouse in a city, where again they are terribly harshly treated. I don't actually remember there being any sort of spanking just other (probably nastier) treatments like bread and water for dinner, being locked in cupboards etc. Despite, or perhaps because of the lack of what I was really looking for, this book fired my imagination as a child and I whiled away many an hour dreaming about governess and workhouse-type fantasies, all of course where I got a good spanking or dose of the belt or cane or whatever, for the most minor mistakes....
Ah, good times. I must dig that book out again.

1 comment:

Winchester said...

I don't know the book, but can identify totally with the feelings you had when reading it from my experience of reading some of he books of my childhood: books which I still possess!