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KS2 Reading Books: The Borrowers by M. Norton

Mary Norton, an excellent British children’s writer.

Mary Norton is an excellent British children’s writer, who is mostly famous for her fantasy novel for children ‘The Borrowers’. This book which was first published in 1952, quickly became a children’s classic.

Mary Norton obtained the prestigious ‘Carnegie Medal’ for it; an award given in recognition to outstanding contributions in children’s literature. She also won the ‘Lewis Carroll Shelf Award’ for the same book.

Mary Norton’s imaginative writing earned her a comparison with well-acclaimed writers such as C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien and Lewis Carroll. Among the other famous books that Mary Norton wrote  ‘Are all the Giants Dead?’, ‘Bed-Knob and Broomstick’, ‘The Bread and Butter Stories’ and ‘The Magic Bed-Knob’ are some of her best creations.

The Borrowers’ book

In the Borrowers’ book, the author portrays the characters of an ingenious group of human-like creatures called the tiny ‘Clock family’, who are only six inches tall, and furtively reside under the floorboards in the house of human beings. In fact, they own nothing, but ‘borrow’ shamelessly whatever they need from the humans. They use various items such as postage stamps and matchboxes for storage.

But the situation takes a dramatic twist when one of the members of the diminutive Clock family, Arrietty, makes friendship with a human boy living in the house. Unexpectedly, the disgusting housekeeper, Mrs Driver, discovers the Clocks and calls the rat-catcher and the Police to get rid of them.

But after this terrifying experience, do they live to tell the tale or does their adventure end here? This book has such an emotional ending that you will find it hard to hold your tears at the very end of this story.


A wonderful imaginative world

In The Borrowers, the writer M. Norton has become quite capable of enchanting readers of all ages, but 7-11 year old youngsters will be especially engaged by this story. She successfully takes children to a wonderful imaginative world, where really special creatures exist. After reading this book, everyone and anyone naturally feels an urge to pursue the next episodes of this series. If your child however, has a preference for books based on true stories, this book might perhaps not be for them, as it is a fictional creation. The captivating style used by the author, however, causes the reader to tumble into a spell of mystery, amusement and pure fascination. This book is full of the exciting adventures of the tiny creatures, making it out and out interesting.



The wonderful illustrations in this book have also turned this story realistic. This book is 100% easy to read, making it totally enthralling to kids. The author also makes it clear that the tiny creatures are not involved with stealing at all; rather they only ‘borrow’ the things that are neglected or unused by the big people. This idea can help in developing a positive impression in the children’s minds on those tiny groups of creatures. It also drives us to think of how many things we possess, take for granted and do not use while others could probably gain benefit from them.

Your child and yourself can not only read the amazing story shared in this book but The Borrowers can also be used in other imaginative ways as commented at Amazon by one of the readers of the book:

“This is such a wonderful book. The story is charming, with the illustrations showing a realistic (if tiny) family. My children loved this story, and even have developed some games based on the story. If you have children, then please consider buying this book for them.”

If you would like to discover this book’s exciting adventures, click here.


Have you read The Borowers’ books? Share it with us below!

If you have read The Borrowers or any of M. Norton’ books, thank you to share it with us.