Our friend Randy Boyagoda, FIRST THINGS writer, novelist, and biographer of Richard John Neuhaus, has written a short personal essay on his reading of the English children’s writer Enid Blyton, Five in the Colonies: Enid Blyton’s Sri Lankan Adventures , published in the Paris Review . Blyton, once a huge seller now much-criticized as the inculcator of cozy imperialist English values, “both claims and licenses a child’s imagination: her writing is invitingly simple and smartly predictive of what any green, flourishing imagination from anywhere would seek at the start of a story.” Randy, intellectually sympathetic to the criticisms, had a different experience.

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