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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Enid Blyton best-loved author

Website of the Telegraph Media Group

Anita Singh reports that Enid Blyton has been voted Britain's best-loved author in a survey which proves that the stories we read as children retain a special place in our affections.

Blyton was first and Roald Dahl came second in a nationwide poll of adult readers. JK Rowling, writer of the Harry Potter books, was third. The children's authors were chosen ahead of Jane Austen, William Shakespeare and Charles Dickens, while Beatrix Potter, another children's favourite, also appeared in the top 10.

Blyton's creations - including the Famous Five, the Secret Seven, Noddy and the girls of Malory Towers - hark back to a gentler era. After her death in 1968, it became fashionable to denounce her stories as racist, sexist and out of touch.Yet today's adults remember them with enormous fondness, according to the survey commissioned to mark the 2008 Costa Book Awards.

And, herewith, the list of the top 50 best-loved authors

1. Enid Blyton
2. Roald Dahl
3. J.K. Rowling
4. Jane Austen
5. William Shakespeare
6. Charles Dickens
7. JRR Tolkien
8. Agatha Christie
9. Stephen King
10. Beatrix Potter
11. CS Lewis
12. Catherine Cookson
13. Martina Cole
14. Bill Bryson
15. Charlotte Bronte
16. Jacqueline Wilson
17. Oscar Wilde
18. Maeve Binchy
19. Dan Brown
20. Emily Bronte
21. Jackie Collins
22. Martin Amis
23. Isaac Asimov
24. Margaret Atwood
25. John Grisham
26. Marian Keyes
27. HG Wells
28. Alan Bennett
29. Arthur C Clarke
30. George Orwell
31. Danielle Steel
32. Iain Banks
33. Judy Blume
34. Jodi Picoult
35. Arthur Conan Doyle
36. Peter Ackroyd
37. Kingsley Amis
38. P.G Wodehouse
39. Dr. Seuss
40. Mark Twain
41. JG Ballard
42. Thomas Hardy
43. James Patterson
44. Ian Rankin
45. Leo Tolstoy
46. Irvine Welsh
47. Jilly Cooper
48. Beryl Bainbridge
49. Ray Bradbury
50. Geoffrey Chaucer

I wonder how many will still be there in 50 -- or even 20 -- years' time.

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