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Behind the Chalet School: A Biography of Elinor M.Brent-Dyer

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  46 ratings  ·  5 reviews
Bettany Press is delighted to have been given the opportunity to publish this revised edition of Helen McClelland's popular biography. New information has made it possible to give a much fuller picture of Elinor M. Brent-Dyer's early life and to fill in some of the gaps that remained in her story. One or two old questions have been answered, and some 'missing' people have ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published 1996 by Bettany Press
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Allie Riley
Feb 25, 2013 rated it really liked it
A very enjoyable biography - well written and informative. The author is clearly a fan of the series (although she made plain her preference for earlier titles repeatedly) and much affection and warmth shine through. Has renewed my passion for collecting these books.
Oct 03, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016, biography, writers, owned
I read this in the first edition, 1981, which shows its self-published origins in rather ungainly typeface and oddly off-kilter page margins. Nonetheless, it was a very welcome trip back to a very distant and long-ago part of my life. I was actually one of the nearly 4000 people (mostly children) who joined the ``Chalet Club`, though alas none of my memorabilia survives. Nor, as far as I know, does my mother`s original set of the early Chalet School books from the 20s and 30s; it was my mother w ...more
Apr 15, 2010 rated it really liked it
I found myself feeling a little sorry for Elinor Brent-Dyer, who was not very successful as an educator, though she later became one of the most popular writer of series books for girls. She never experienced the opportunity for marriage and motherhood that Jo and most of her other characters do as they grow up. Still, her books have a cozy charm that still appeals to many girls today.
Apr 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Well-researched and fascinating, this is a must-read for any CS fan. HMcC is a wee bit harsh on EBD at times, but then, to be fair, it's not as though I'm restrained in my own views of EBD's literary merit. It’s always a shock, though, to find out (again) that, far from being the original Miss Annersley, EBD was by all accounts rather an over-the-top personality in real life.

A gripping read, though, and I particularly like reading about the Centenary celebrations (because, y'know, I was there. A
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Real name: Helen Margaret Moncrieff; famed cellist who became children's author in her 60s as Helen McClelland.

Born into Scottish 'legal' aristocracy. Both parents encouraged her musical promise from an early age and after years at the private music school run by Ruth Waddell in Edinburgh, they insisted she take a music degree at the University of Edinburgh (which she considered a waste of time)

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