The Enchanted Wood (novel) facts for kids
First edition cover
|Illustrator||Dorothy M. Wheeler|
|Series||The Faraway Tree|
|Media type||Print (Hardcover)|
|Followed by||The Magic Faraway Tree|
In the first novel in the series, Jo, Bessie and Fanny (updated in later editions to Joe, Beth and Frannie) move to the countryside, near a large wood. One day, they go for a walk in the wood and discover an enormous tree whose branches seem to reach into the clouds. This is the Faraway Tree.
When the children climb the Faraway Tree, they discover it is a very strange tree; it grows apples, pears, nuts, acorns, oak leaves and all sorts! Different magical creatures, including Moon-Face, Silky the fairy, The Saucepan Man, Dame Washalot, Mr. Watzisname and the Angry Pixie live there. They become friends with these people, in particular Moon-Face and Silky. At the very top of the tree, they discover a ladder which leads them to magical lands. The land is different on each visit, because each place moves on from the top of the tree to make way for a new land. The children are free to come and go, but they must leave before the land moves on or they will be stuck there until the land returns to the Faraway Tree. In various chapters, one of the children gets stuck in the land.
The lands at the top are sometimes extremely unpleasant – for example the Land of Dame Slap, an aggressive school teacher; and sometimes fantastically enjoyable – notably the Land of Birthdays, the Land of Goodies, the Land of Take-What-You-Want and the Land of Do-As-You-Please.
The first land the three children visit is the Roundabout Land, where they give some cake to two rabbits, and the rabbits dig a hole for themselves and the three children. The last land they visit in this book is the Land of Birthdays, where the brownies and the inhabitants of the Faraway Tree celebrate Bessie's birthday.
Lands in the book
- The Roundabout Land
This land spins round and round like a roundabout, and plays music as it spins. In the land live a number of rabbits and an old man who sings along with the music while tapping his hand to the beat. The land only stops spinning once in a blue moon.
- The Land of Ice and Snow
The land is full of ice and snow. It has a moon and a sun in the sky at the same time. In the land live the polar bears, and the Magic Snowman used to live there before Moon-Face melted him.
- The Land of the Old Saucepan Man
The Saucepan Man used to live there before he went to live in the Faraway Tree. The island is surrounded by mist and has a set of saucepans as steps, leading down to the Saucepan Man's home.
- The Rocking Land
Is a land where you cannot take one step forward without taking ten steps back. Hills in the land go up and down and sometimes the land will tip completely sideways and you have to grab hold of a tree or roll off. It is believed that it is held by a giant who is trying to throw the land off his back.
- The Land of Take-What-You-Want
Is a land in which, as the name suggests, you can take whatever you want for free.
- The Land of Dame Slap (Snap in later editions.)
Is the land where Dame Slap has her school for naughty brownies, pixies and fairies, and results with very horrid punishments (e.g. go to bed without supper, slaps, etc.). This was later changed into Dame Snap, who shouts instead of slaps, to reduce the image of violence.
- The Land of Seagulls
Is a land full of seagulls.
- The Land of the Red Goblins
The Red Goblins used to live in the land before Wizard Mighty-One took them prisoner in the Land of Wizards.
- The Land of Wizards
Is home to several wizards and Wizard Mighty-One and the prisoner Red Goblins.
- The Land of Birthdays
Is a land you can visit only if someone has a birthday. It is land which provides party food and games for you if you have a birthday party. Bessie's one birthday is celebrated there.
The Enchanted Wood (novel) Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.