Friday Faceoff – Remember, remember, gunpowder, treason and plot… #Brainfluffbookblog


This meme was started by Books by Proxy, whose fabulous idea was to compare UK and US book covers and decide which is we prefer. This meme is currently being nurtured by Lynn’s Book Blog and the subject this week featuring on any of our covers is BONFIRE NIGHT, so I’ve selected Secret Seven Fireworks – Book 11 of The Secret Seven series by Enid Blyton.


This audio CD edition was produced by Hodder Children’s Books in November 1996. I really like this one. The cover is bright and busy, featuring the children looking happy and positive as they gather material for their bonfire night. And while I usually dislike text boxes running through the middle of a cover, this one has a comforting period feel of the original series, which I loved as a child. This one is my favourite.


Published in 2006 by Hodder, I love the bright fire against the black cover – this one looks fantastic in thumbnail. However, I am far less impressed at the full-sized effort, given the children are depicted as cartoons… No! This never happened with Blyton’s books other than the Noddy series and her fantasy stories. So while everything else is in place to make this my favourite – this is a dealbreaker for me.


This edition, published by Hodder in 2002, is afflicted with two hefty text boxes in Barbie pink – quite what that colour has to do with a Secret Seven adventure, I’m not quite sure. And looking at the cover, you’d think it was all about a small dog rather than a gang of children who enjoy tracking down villains.


Produced by Editorial Notícias in 1978, this Portuguese edition is a far more successful effort. I like the fact the children are dressed in clothes from the 1950s and busy collecting material for the bonfire, clearly enjoying themselves. This gives a great period feel to the cover and it is a close contender for my favourite.


This Spanish edition, published by Editorial Juventud in 1964, is another attractive cover – I like the cheeky grin on the girl’s face as she turns towards us and the jaunty angle of the famous Enid Blyton signature in red, picking up the girl’s jumper. And the reason why this one isn’t my favourite is the lack of a background. That grey with a few blobs of green is far too bland to successfully evoke this world-famous series. That’s my opinion – but I’d love to know which is your favourite cover.

31 responses »

    • It’s great fun, isn’t it? I’m not sure – was Enid Blyton a big thing in the US the way she was over here in the UK? She certainly dominated the children’s section in bookshops when I was a girl…

  1. I love the first one, but also the last one, despite the lack of background. Great choice, I’m afraid I bombed this challenge, even after googling Bonfire Night I couldn’t quite figure out the prompt, oh well…

    • The dog was one of the Secret Seven gang:). Yes – I have to say – this is allll about a trip down memory lane as I LOVED all these books when I was a youngster.

    • Thank you, Kimberly:). Enid Blyton was my guilty pleasure as a girl because my grandmother didn’t approve of my reading her books. And those covers take me right back to reading these under the quilt at night with a torch:)

  2. The audio cd cover and the Portuguese cover are my favorites. I think the Portuguese one is probably my 1st with the audio cd cover in close 2nd.

  3. As a child I would pick #1. As an older child, I would pick #2. I was not a good reader as a child, and Enid Blyton doesn’t ring a bell. Was she like Nancy Drew?

    • She was everywhere in the UK throughout the last century. She wrote popular series for children ranging from the littlies to what would now be known as YA reads – though never romance. She apparently wrote 762 books and has sold over a 100 million copies worldwide.

  4. I have to admit the sentimental side of me went right for the cover with the dog because the dog looks like one I had as a child, but the more rational side of me agrees that the first one is the best choice.

    • Yes… I reckon my sales would go through the roof, if I could figure how to feature a dog in my science fiction, space opera series. Might be an idea to INCLUDE said dog first, though…

  5. I concur on that audio book over! There’s a lot of life to it. The color palette is vibrant. And it actually has seven kids. 🙂 xxxxxxxxxxxx Any time you have an animal on the cover, kids will believe animals are the primary characters. Don’t full a fast one, cover-makers!

  6. In this case, I feel like all the covers didn’t age well. The only one that caught my eye enough was the 2006 one, but even this one doesn’t feel unique enough. I guess no picks from me this time around. 🙂

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