Toseland’s used to being alone – his father and step-mother are far away in Burma, and last holidays he stayed at boarding school with the head mistress. But then his great-grandmother wrote to say that he was coming to stay with her at Green Knowe.
The house is amazing, with wonderful things around every corner, and Tolly has a room filled with amazing things – a carved mouse that looks incredibly lifelike, a rocking horse with real hair, and a miniature doll’s house that replicated Green Knowe to the last detail. Except that there are four beds in the doll house, and only one in Tolly’s room. The other beds belong to Alexander, Linnet and Toby – and if Tolly listens hard enough he can hear them in the house and on the grounds.
I read all the Green Knowe books around twenty-five year ago, and look forward to revisiting the characters, and the plots I only dimly remember. The Children of Green Knowe is justifiably a children’s classic - into what appears a somewhat bleak and lonely childhood enters magic, fantasy and acceptance. Great-Grandmother Oldknowe played with Toby, Linnet and Alexander when she was a child, and fully enters into Tolly's world, providing him with validation. The books are, more importantly, very well written, and strongly evocative. - Alex