Name: The Famous Five
Location: Kirrin, United Kingdom
Type of Detective: Amateur
First Appeared: 1942
Memorable Phrase: “I say – this has boiled up into quite an adventure, hasn’t it?”
Description: Britain’s answer to the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew (both of who will be making a Famous Friday appearance soon), the Famous Five have brightened millions of children’s imaginations since Enid Blyton’s first book of the series, Five on a Treasure Island, was published in 1942. Since then more than one hundred million books about these child detectives have been published in dozens of languages.
The group are unusual detectives: Julian, Dick, George, Anne and Timmy (the dog) usually spend their days in school or drinking ginger pop in their village. It is when they holiday at the seaside town of Kirrin, however, that their sense of adventure, crime solving abilities and detective skills are brought to the fore.
Whether it’s surveillance of smugglers, planning countermeasures for criminals, investigating missing persons, or gathering evidence, the team invariably find themselves plotting to catch criminals who use their recreational island by the shore to conduct their misdemeanors. Each undercover operation is faced with unparalleled enthusiasm and bravery. It’s perhaps this characterization that makes the books so appealing: we really feel as though we are exploring the secret passages, smuggler tunnels and abandoned castles with the Famous Five!