The Borrowers and Thoughts on Children’s Literature


Last December I wrote this post about the cute miniature Christmas dioramas that were in the windows at a downtown department store called The Bay. I spoke about my lifelong love of tiny things.

One of the comments left was from a dear on-line friend Vix, who keeps the blog Vintage Vix. She is a real sweetheart with such a bright outlook on life and a killer vintage style of dressing. It is no wonder that all who meet Vix on-line (and I’m sure in real life too) love this lady. I highly recommend you pop over and make her acquaintance. I guarantee that she will keep you entertained. (I know that a few of you already know Vix, as it is through her that I fortuitously got to know you!)

Anyway, in response to my post about my enchantment with miniatures, she suggested that I check out a series of books called ‘The Borrowers’. I must admit that I was living under a rock where this series of books is concerned. They are children’s literature, written in in the fifties by Mary Norton, and the tales describe the adventures of a tiny family, amidst a world of normal sized people. But I bet you already know that and many of you probably read these books as youngsters.



In spite of loving my regular trips to the library and volunteering as a library assistant during my years in grade-school, I somehow completely missed The Borrowers series. I know that if I had seen them I would certainly have been interested in reading them. As for what I did read, my favourite classic reads back then were the Pippi Longstocking and Encyclopedia Brown books, closely followed by anything by Beverly Cleary. Then when I was a bit older, my most beloved stories were ‘The Secret Garden’ and ‘A Tree Grows in Brooklyn’. And I simply could not get my hands on enough Nancy Drew books, and remember my across-the-street neighbour giving me a stack of those after she’d read them, a gift I was very pleased to receive.

My first adult book was a tattered copy of ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’. Around that time I read JD Salinger’s ‘Catcher in the Rye’, but have to say that though I tried his ‘Franny and Zooey’, I could never get into that one.

Later at university I took an elective course that featured children’s literature, where we did in-depth study of Alice in Wonderland, The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe, and The Hobbit. I must admit that I spent far too much time reading those books while tackling a full course load of my core courses in Economics, Math, Statistics and Finance. It was a welcome distraction but probably not something I would advise a student to do, as there was a lot of required reading. I remember that I took the course with one of my housemates who was also completing a degree in business, and she had to drop the Children’s lit class. That said, here I am today fondly recalling this particular course, while I’d be challenged to solve a Calculus equation if I needed to.

These days I still enjoy a good story written for a younger person in mind, and count The Hunger Games among my all-time favourite books, and also rather enjoyed the first Twilight book, although I’ve not pursued the subsequent ones in that series.

As for The Harry Potter books, I enjoyed the first one and plan to read the others one day.








But somehow, The Borrowers and I never crossed paths, until Vix told me about them 3 months ago. As soon as she suggested them, I popped online and after finding many worn out used copies of the individual books, I found this complete set (reprinted in 1998), and still sealed. In these photos you are seeing them for the first time along with me.

I am so excited to dig into ‘The Complete Adventures of The Borrowers’, described as ‘Three little people and their not-so-little adventures’.

And motivated by having these books I am starting a mini series on my blog where I will discuss what I would have in my dream dollhouse, featuring fantastic miniature items I have found on ebay.

Stay tuned for my first post on this, which will feature what I think a perfect dollhouse kitchen would look like.

How about you? Have you read The Borrowers? What were some of your favourite children’s literature books?

Thanks for coming by,
xo loulou



This post supported by: