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The Borrowers (The Borrowers #1)

4.02  ·  Rating Details ·  74,329 Ratings  ·  1,332 Reviews
Beneath the kitchen floor is the world of the Borrowers -- Pod and Homily Clock and their daughter, Arrietty. In their tiny home, matchboxes double as roomy dressers and postage stamps hang on the walls like paintings. Whatever the Clocks need they simply "borrow" from the "human beans" who live above them. It's a comfortable life, but boring if you're a kid. Only Pod is a ...more
Audio CD, 0 pages
Published March 1st 2002 by Chivers Audio Books (first published 1952)
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Jillian For my 1981 copy of this book in the U. S., it was Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Publishers
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Zoë
Mar 31, 2015 Zoë rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Book 30/100 of 2015
j
Day 17 of my Facebook 30 Day Book Challenge asks me to list the shortest book I've read, so here it is. I almost went with the Hobbit, but then I remembered The Borrowers. This is a book about a family of tiny people who live under the floorboards of a normal human home, surviving by pilfering stuff from the giants who inhabit it. I'd guess they are a few inches tall, so that's pretty short.

Certainly they weren't looking for the shortest book I have read in terms of number of pages, right? Becau
...more
Rainbow
Jun 07, 2011 Rainbow rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book to my 6 year old, which was a surreal experience because I remember reading it (or having it read to me) when i was his age.

I LOVED this book. Then and now. It's so sophisticated, especially the humor and vocabulary ... It made me realize how different children's books are now. Not that they're dumbed down -- but they're so conscious of their readers' limitations. You get the sense that all of the words have to come off grade-appropriate spelling lists.

Anyway, some of this book
...more
Jennifer
Mar 19, 2009 Jennifer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
More than just loving the story in this book I liked the idea of it. You had people that were smaller than a child being intelligent and resourceful and they were taken seriously. What child wouldn't love that? Plus little people who make furniture out of buttons and thimbles - it's just too cute.
Jayaprakash Satyamurthy
I've had this book on my shelves for a few years, but I only got around to reading it after watching Studio Ghibli's gorgeous adaptation, 'The Secret World Of Arietty'. I wasn't sure what to expect, but what I got was a tougher, more tender novel than its premise - little people who live underfoot and steal everything they need from human beings - necessarily suggested.

This is a meticulous, honest book that doesn't condescend to its intended audience. The characters are all flawed, believable,
...more
Kathryn
Feb 03, 2012 Kathryn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 STARS

I feel quite certain my mom read this to me when I was little, and that it made a big impression on me. I even remember naming one of my Barbies Egglatina! The story has has many wonderful aspects that many children will enjoy, such as the Borrowers being little people that live, hidden away, in our homes and "borrow" (steal? that is open to interpretation) things from us. If you miss a pencil, or postage stamp, and you feel quite sure you really *did* leave it *right there*--well, perh
...more
John
Aug 27, 2013 John rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
When I was in third grade, I was at the library with my dad and little sister. My dad asked me if I had a book to report on for summer reading, since we were there and everything. The question blindsided me, so I said, "Yes."

I had not read the Borrowers, which I had checked out the week before. But I took the book and walked over to the library lady who was shelving books. I told her I wanted to report on this book I read for summer reading. Now in those days, library summer reading was based o
...more
Jessika
I read pretty much constantly as a child, so I'm not sure how I missed out on this one until now, but I'm seriously bumming about that. I would have loved this as a kid.

It was such an imaginative story, and I can imagine that it's led many children over the years to wonder what was living in their houses with them. I especially loved that the way Mrs. May told the story of the Borrowers left the fact of their existence up to the reader. Those were my favorite kinds of stories as a kid. I went t
...more
Anna [Floanne]
Meravigliosi, gli Sgraffignoli! Credo che adesso mi toccherà leggere tutta la serie!
Huongta
Cũng được.
Trong đầu mỗi đứa trẻ đều có một thế giới, thế giới dần thu hẹp khi chúng ta lớn lên.
Ai biết được, có thể trái đất nằm trong một cái hộp, trong một nhà kho cũ nào đó, của một gia đình khổng lồ :v
Theresa
Jun 17, 2008 Theresa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I regarded The Borrowers with merciless scorn when I was actually at the age where reading The Borrowers was appropriate--I found it boring. However, I have since come to love the adventures of Homily, Pod, Arriety, Spiller, and the Hendrearies. There are several Borrower books I believe--The Borrowers, The Borrowers Afield, The Borrowers Afloat, the Borrowers Aloft, and the Borrowers Avenged. The stories are as whimsical as can be, but Norton writes with Victorian edge and can make the mood dar ...more
Jackie
Jun 29, 2008 Jackie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
These books SOOOO appealed to me as a young girl, especially the alternative uses for all of their "borrowed" objects. I was forever creating little towns with their own stories in the vacant lot next door and I think that in Norton I found a kindred spirit who fed the fire of my already very active imagination. I may just have to go back and read these again for old times sake.
Hong Trang
Truyện được đánh giá là "kinh điển" cho trẻ em, và phần lớn người đọc đánh giá cao nhưng mình phải mất khá lâu mới đọc cho hết. Nhịp chuyện chậm rãi, bắt đầu và kết thúc cũng từ tốn, không quá gay cấn (nên vì vậy thích hợp cho trẻ em chăng? ). Có lẽ muốn cảm thụ cho hết, mình hẳn phải đọc bằng tiếng Anh, vì nghe nói, cách dùng từ và chơi chữ của tác giả rất thú vị, mà mình không thấy được khía cạnh này trong tác phẩm dịch.
Deborah Pickstone
I haven't read this since.......a long time! A was a child, anyway. It's rather good and I hope it's still read by children - as well as much older children such as am I :)
Tanabrus
Questo libro racconta una storia simile ma allo stesso tempo abbastanza diversa da quella mostrata nel film dello studio Ghibli.
L'atmosfera di inizio novecento che si respira aiuta tantissimo a differenziarlo dal film, consentendo di godere appieno della lettura senza pensare costantemente alla sua trasposizione.

Gli Sgraffignoli e il loro mondo "sotto il pavimento", con il loro reinventare i nostri oggetti di uso quotidiano, reinterpretandoli alla luce delle loro ridotte dimensioni.
Ma anche la l
...more
Laura
Jun 23, 2013 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Wanda, Gundula
FRom BBC Radio 4 Extra:
Adaptation of the children's classic following the adventures of the tiny Clock family. Stars Clare Corbett.


Sara
This is a childhood must. Must. Absolute must. Something about the incredible creativity and wholesomeness of this book puts it on my most dear classics shelf next to Narnia, Pooh, Paddington, Betsy Tacy, Stuart Little, Five Children and It and Cowboy Small. The Borrowers is magical and creative and full of wonder and awe.

In many stories we talk about the power or genius coming from specific characters, events or actions. In Narnia we love Aslan and the story arc and values the inspire greatness
...more
Nishita Patel
Sep 30, 2011 Nishita Patel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As I love my classics, and I remember giving this book a read a few years ago, I thought it'd be quite repetitive and i'd know what would happen very well. But unfortunately, I missed out a few key points. And after reading the book again, I absolutely enjoyed reading the book. The idea of the 'little people' and how they 'borrow' just makes the book more exciting, and allows the reader to dissolve in the fantasy. The way the story unfolds of how the fear of the 'big people' and how they manage ...more
Wealhtheow
Aug 07, 2007 Wealhtheow rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Tiny people live in your house! A tiny little girl and her parents live out their daily lives under the baseboards of an old house. They furnish their home with items "borrowed" from the larger home (the girl sleeps in a bed made from a cigar box). Although years ago there were many "Borrowers," there is only one family left. This is an odd story, with that dark sort of whimsey that has fallen out of favor since the second world war.
Richard
This book was one of the staples of my childhood. The whole series was a favorite of mine, in fact. I owned them all in hard cover but along the line, someone seems to have borrowed them all, and I'm not going to tear up the floor boards to search for them. Instead, I bought a paperback compendium that contains all of the Borrowers books together...
Libros Prohibidos
Jul 22, 2015 Libros Prohibidos rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Clásico de la literatura juvenil inglesa, muy divertido, rebosante de descripciones de una gran imaginación y provisto de un sentido del humor irónico que gustará a los más mayores (quienes pueden encontrar significado a las bromas). Debería ser lectura obligada para niños. Reseña completa:
http://www.libros-prohibidos.com/mary...
Nikki
Jul 12, 2015 Nikki rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's a long, long time since I read this, but I remember being enchanted with the story of the tiny creatures and especially the uses they find for the things they "borrow" from us, the Human Beans. There was a movie, I believe, a few years ago, but I haven't seen it. I would recommend the Borrowers series for any imaginative child.
writer...
Great re-read of this introduction to a childhood fav fantasy world of wee people living hidden beneath the floors within a large country home in England. Included for Bout of Books 17 and CFD's Award Winner Challenge reading , August 2016.
Drebbles
Jun 22, 2009 Drebbles rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2004
Arrietty Clock and her parents, Pod and Homily, are tiny people who live beneath the floor of an old house and `borrow' the things they need from the humans who live in the house above. At one point, many borrowers lived in the house, but the others emigrated for various reasons and only the Clocks live in the house. While her parents seem happy, Arrietty longs to see the world outside. Her mother finally persuades Pod to take her borrowing and her first time out, she meets the boy upstairs. The ...more
Katelyn
Dec 09, 2011 Katelyn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
1. Fantasy

2. The Clock family are borrowers, a rare and tiny people, that live at the bottom of a grandfather clock. They must borrow things from average size humans, which makes things difficult for them. The struggles they face are large and life threatening, but they are determined to persevere.

3. A- This is an accurate example of a fantasy, but the real life setting makes it relatable for readers.

B- I love this story because of the details and thought provoking setting. It forces readers t
...more
Trish
Dec 02, 2010 Trish rated it liked it
The narrator was quite good. The kids loved imitating the English accent and the different silly inflections that Homily was given. They found her totally ridiculous. Hearing the story added a new dimension for me. I remember reading Borrower books as a kid, but I had no idea they were so British. Of course, I didn't know much about the UK when I was a kid. I liked the innovative world of little people living in hidden places of a house that no one really thinks about, and it's so true that some ...more
Emilie
Vain 149 sivua pitkä tarina on pelkkä intro todelliselle seikkailulle, sillä Kätkijät-kirjoja on englanniksi yhteensä 5 kpl. Pitkälle ei valitettavasti tässä muutaman sivun pituisessa kirjassa päästy. Idea pienistä ihmisistä, jotka asustelevat kodin koloissa on mielestäni suloista ja erilaisten tavaroiden hyötykäyttö kätkijöiden taloudessa oli hauskaa lueskeltavaa.

Näin lyhyestä kertomuksesta ei voi kyllä paljon sanoa, sillä seikkailu ei ehtinyt alkaakaan, kun sivut jo loppuivat. Harmi. Arietta v
...more
Nerdish Mum
The book started off extremely slow and I found it very hard to get into, I kept putting it down and finding pretty much anything else that I could do instead of finish reading it. Sadly I think the book has aged badly due to it's casual mentioning of smacking children and being firm handed with your wife, The idea of the story itself is brilliant and with the amount of things I put down which disappear, I'm inclined to believe in Borrowers.

When Arrietty meets the boy, some of the magic I rememb
...more
Kevin
Jun 05, 2015 Kevin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Such a fantastic book! Why have I not discovered this before? After being left a bit stale with some of the latest Carnegie shortlist offerings (2015 is not a very good year!) I thought I would try some winners from the past. Mary Norton won the Carnegie prize for The Borrowers back in 1952. To be frank it has not dated one little bit and could easily be set today. Her writing is clear and very simple to understand without being patronising to the reader. The volume that I read featured both The ...more
Sajeda Assenjee
Sep 17, 2011 Sajeda Assenjee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I remember reading this when I was younger and having read this again it does not disappoint.It is a must read.The Borrowers is the story about the Clock family-Pod,Homily and their daughter Arriety who live under the grandfather clock.They live by "borrowing" from "human beans" upstairs and their greatest fear is being discovered or eaten by the cat!
Pod goes borrowing -match boxes for chest of drawers,a sardine-can for a bed and crumbs for foods.His daughter is tired of living underground and w
...more
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Best Fantasy Book...: The Borrowers (The Borrowers #1) by Mary Norton 3 7 Feb 22, 2016 06:22PM  
2015 Reading Chal...: The Borrowerrs by Mary Norton 1 13 Aug 16, 2015 12:36PM  
2015 Reading Chal...: The Borrowers by Mary Norton 3 20 May 23, 2015 06:04AM  
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Mary Norton (née Pearson) was an English children's author. She was the daughter of a physician, and was raised in a Georgian house at the end of the High Street in Leighton Buzzard. The house now consists of part of Leighton Middle School, known within the school as The Old House, and was reportedly the setting of her novel The Borrowers. She married Robert C. Norton in 1927 and had four children ...more
More about Mary Norton...

Other Books in the Series

The Borrowers (6 books)
  • The Borrowers Afield (The Borrowers #2)
  • The Borrowers Afloat (The Borrowers #3)
  • The Borrowers Aloft (The Borrowers #4)
  • The Borrowers Aloft: With the Short Tale Poor Stainless
  • The Borrowers Avenged (The Borrowers #5)

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“Mrs. May looked back at her. "Kate," she said after a moment, "stories never really end. They can go on and on and on. It's just that sometimes, at a certain point, one stops telling them.” 45 likes
“...Borrower's don't steal."
"Except from human beings," said the boy.
Arrietty burst out laughing; she laughed so much that she had to hide her face in the primrose. "Oh dear," she gasped with tears in her eyes, "you are funny!" She stared upward at his puzzled face. "Human beans are for Borrowers - like bread's for butter!”
4 likes
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