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Five on Brexit Island

(Enid Blyton for Grown-Ups)

3.04  ·  Rating details ·  1,548 ratings  ·  234 reviews
Five on Brexit Island
Hardcover, 103 pages
Published November 14th 2017 by Quercus Publishing (first published November 3rd 2016)
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Average rating 3.04  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,548 ratings  ·  234 reviews

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Start your review of Five on Brexit Island
"Where is it?" said George irritably, as Aunt Fanny began to remove the breakfast things. "I've been looking for it all morning--"

"For what, dear?" asked Uncle Quentin.

"My copy of Five on Brexit Island, of course!" said George. "I just can't think where - oh Julian, you rotter - how could you!" And indeed her cousin was putting the book down with a satisfied smirk, having evidently just finished the last page.

"You beast!" said George indignantly. "You utter beast!" She would have continued, but
Natalie Vellacott
Feb 09, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: current-affairs

Julian, Dick, Anne, George and Timmy are sitting in a circle. They are staring at an anxious looking figure sitting in the middle of the circle.
"So, Mr Vincent, why did you decide to turn our exciting adventures into a political debacle?" Julian speaks first, he is the leader.
"Um, well, I thought it might be funny and I wanted to make a quick buck." The older man shifts awkwardly and casts his eyes to the ground.
"So, you exploited the much-loved and best selling Enid B
Paul Fulcher
Dec 12, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Timmy was considered to be neutral,although if he had been capable of understanding the variety of sausages available on the European mainland, that could probably have been a deciding factor.

Part of a series of semi-satirical updates of the Famous Five series, beloved from my childhood, to the present day.

Five on Brexit Island has George, disgusted by the result of the Brexit referendum, declaring that Kirrin Island, owned by her family from the original novels, will itself declare independenc
David Sarkies
Jul 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comedy
So, Kirrin Island is in Dorsett
8 July 2017 - Perth

I suspect that this book came out soon after the quite unexpected result of the Brexit referendum and is actually dripping with quite a lot of political commentary. Not only does the issue of being ruled by a faceless bureaucracy in Brussels, immigration, and some of the ridiculous EU laws come up, but the idea of the meaningless political speech is explored (including the orator who delivers a fine sounding argument but in the end has no idea w
Jan 07, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humour
I grew up reading the Famous Five, so was keen to read this "spoof", but sadly the only really funny thing about it is the title. ...more
Athan Tolis
Nov 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humor
Don’t read this if you haven’t yet come to terms with Brexit; the angle is, let us say, not fanatically pro-European.

My background dictates I should have truly hated this book: My mom and dad are both (hello, matey peeps!) Greek. They had me in Chicago, they raised me in Athens, where I gradually became aware of the fact that I hail from an ethnic minority, and they sent me to college in Boston. From there I moved to Frankfurt for a year, before settling in London for the past 25 years, where I’
Feb 27, 2018 rated it did not like it
This was just terrible. The time around referendum is perfectly described in this book. And you know what? I already had to live through that nightmare where everyone lies, no one knows what Brexit means (well except that “Brexit means Brexit”, right?) and no one can make an informed decision… so why would I read about it too?

That is the reason why I would like to say that this book is pointless. It is not funny, it just describes things that have already happened in a super weird way.

I though
Not as good as the other "Five for Grown Ups" book I read, Five go Gluten- Free. This one revolves around everyone's favourite referendum. Distraught that Britain has made the decision to leave the EU, George declares her intention to make Kirrin Island independent from the UK. Julian, who increasingly resembles Boris Johnson, opposes this.

It's an interesting idea, but it wasn't as clever as it thought it was, and the ending was weak. Unlike Five go Gluten Free, where the characters felt like ad
Paul E. Morph
This one was more than a little heavy-handed. A harsher reviewer than I might even go so far as to say clumsy. Good job I'm not that guy.

It does have some amusing moments but I'd definitely rank this as the weakest of all the Famous Five parody books.
This was weak lemon squash for me I'm afraid. ...more
Oct 26, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
This was my first exposure to the adult version of a beloved adventure series written by Enid Blyton and avidly enjoyed during my childhood in England. I was both bemused and delighted to receive a copy of this book in a package sent from my son who resides in London, England. I began reading, however, I mislaid it part way through, and forgot about it for a while, hence the length of time it has taken me to finish what I would describe as a quick read. It does a fair job of explaining Brexit, i ...more
Dec 28, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, british, satire

Not all that funny, not all that coherent (perhaps that's the point?) and not all that memorable. Having said that, I don't feel that I can honestly drop this to 1 star because this book didn't really elicit any feelings in me, either positive or negative. Mostly harmless, I suppose.
Feb 27, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, humour
My least favourite of the 'adult' Famous Five series. Maybe it is because I can't find anything funny about the nightmare that is Brexit, but I did appreciate the bit where Julian gets stuck on a zipwire, a la Boris Johnson. Nice touch. ...more
Margaret Bamford
Not as funny as I thought it would be but a good take on the Brexit situation.
Timothy Burbage
Mar 01, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2017
This book was a light read that I got as a gift for Christmas.

As someone who was a hard remainer (and still is smarting over the death of modern Britain) I thought this book would be incredible aggravating. However, this didn't bring out the spite and bile that I feel towards Brexit. It was pretty funny in places, though some of the jokes really didn't hit. I had never read a Famous Five book, but I could pick up on when they were making fun of their previous adventures. The book was well made,
Gaynor Thomas
Mar 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very cleverly done. I read this during the hoo haa around a second Scottish independence referendum, rejected by Teresa May on behalf of the UK government. It tickles me how many "Brexiteers" are incensed by the idea of an independent Scotland. The irony of it! So it was an ideal time for me to read this book, which tackles pretty much the same issues. I enjoyed it very much. ...more
John Frankham
Sep 19, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Only mildly amusing. And incoherent, unfortunately. Could have been so much better.
Dec 14, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Parody books seem to be in vogue at present; walk into any bookshop, and the chances are you will be confronted by a large table spread with such things as We're All Going on a Bar Hunt in the first minute. I normally don't buy into bookish trends, preferring to choose my own, often marginally obscure, reads at my leisure. When I spotted that the Famous Five had been updated for the twenty-first century, however, I couldn't bring myself to let the books pass me by.

I was an enormous fan of Enid B
Sean Kennedy
Nov 30, 2016 rated it liked it
I hope Dawn French, Jennifer Saunders et. al are seeing some royalties for these books, as they owe a lot to Five Go Mad in Dorset and Five Go Mad on Mescalin.

This is an amusing satire on the arguments for and against Brexit, and also a satire of the Famous Five itself. It is actually done quite well, imitating Blyton's style, and I find myself wanting to re-read the originals. The whole Brexit angle, however, still smarts. But I'm looking forward to getting the other books.
Nov 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Following on from the success of the Ladybird How Does It Work books aimed at adults for nostalgia five The Famous Five books have been produced this year.

Personally I never grew up reading the original Blyton books, but with Brexit being so topical compared to the others in the series I thought I'd pick this up.

Some really fun analogies as we see the gang on Kirrin Island during the EU Referendum.
A very enjoyable, fun and easy read.
Kat Fiction
Jan 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
I was never a big fan of Enid Blyton books when I was a child. This was an amusing reminder of quite how annoying I found the Famous Five in the first place (even Timmy the dog... especially Timmy the dog). Maybe this is what we needed to stand back and laugh at ourselves post-referendum. Or maybe we can just keep arguing amongst ourselves at dinner parties. Either way, I may have lost my faith in humanity, but I've a new-found appreciation of Julian, George, Dick, Anne and Timmy. ...more
Oscar Despard
This was an enjoyable satire on both Brexit and the Famous Five series. In some places, it jarred slightly, as it veered slightly too far into Brexit or too far into the Famous Five, but on the whole, the two themes were mixed very well in a highly enjoyable manner.
Jan 02, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: funny
Not going to win any literary awards but a light-hearted satirical take on Brexit. A fun book.
Iona  Stewart
Nov 03, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This must be the worst book I’ve ever read to the end, and I did this in order to get the full, miserable picture before reviewing it.

Many people will have read Enid Blyton’s Five books as children. This is a famous Five book for grown-ups, penned by a different author.

The first hint of the book’s atrociousness was to be seen in the drawings, though the drawing on the front cover was beyond reproach. As previous readers of the Five books will be aware of, the Famous Five consisted of four child
Rosemary Standeven
The United Kingdom has voted for Brexit, and the Famous Five were split over the referendum. Julian voted to leave, and the others to stay. Anne has repeated nightmares about her numerous European boyfriends who have had to leave her as Britain leaves the EU. All are going to miss French cheeses. Now, George has decided, that if she can no longer be part of the EU, then she will declare her Kirrin Island independent of the UK. Julian is utterly opposed to having the island “detach itself from th ...more
I suppose this could be interesting to the people who enjoyed the original Five-books. I read them as a child as well, but was never a huge fan. (Also, wasn't there a parrot? Or did I make that up?) These parodies (there are a couple more) are aimed at grownups who read the originals as kids but that's about all there is to these books. They are mock funny, but the funniest thing about this series is the titles. There is some actual political commentary too and some of it is interesting. Althoug ...more
Apr 25, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A bit like Marmite, this book seems to have garnered both love and hate reviews. I was never a huge Blyton fan, though I had read enough of these ones to recall the originals. Here the four children have grown up (the 5th being Timmy the dog) - but still visit Kirrin Island and decide to do so on the fateful night following the Brexit Referendum. Armed with smart phones, they learn of the result the next morning. Julian is delighted, but not George, who owns the island and who is so angry that s ...more
James Kinsley
May 06, 2017 rated it it was ok
Weak sauce. Maybe it's that that whole referendum business is still too raw, and the acrimony it stirred up still so tangible, or maybe the authorised nature of the spoof pulled its teeth a bit, but I failed to register a chuckle.
A couple of nice gags, but mostly the targets are predictable and the satire writes itself, to little purpose.
The Adult Ladybird books, the success of which this clearly seeks to emulate, have the advantage of brevity. Not that this is long, but long enough to stretch
Arushi Bhaskar
Mar 28, 2020 rated it liked it
Okay, so honestly, I really don't think this is what Julian would be like as an adult.

Moving on, this book was an interesting, quick insight into the intricacies of politics. Brexit, one of the most significant political phenomena of recent times, is deconstructed- to paraphrase a famous saying, the political is indeed personal.

The ending could have been better, I feel. It was anti-climactic and underwhelming, and felt too rushed. But overall, I'd say read this if you're feeling even a little no
Paul Brown
Five On Brexit Island is surprisingly politically neutral its mission only seems to be to highlight that the whole EU referendum is a joke and while their is merit in this observation it was never going to be a popular viewpoint considering the division caused by Brexit. I think the Famous Five parody series would be best steering clear of politics in future and sticking with the safe and formulatic sitcom plots.
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Bruno Vincent was a bookseller and book editor before he was an author. His humour books for grown-ups, co-authored with Jon Butler, were national bestsellers and have been translated into seven languages. The TUMBLEWATER books are his first for children.

Other books in the series

Enid Blyton for Grown-Ups (1 - 10 of 15 books)
  • Five Give Up the Booze
  • Five Go Gluten Free (Enid Blyton for Grown-ups)
  • Five Go Parenting (Enid Blyton for Grown Ups)
  • Five Go On A Strategy Away Day
  • Five Forget Mother's Day (Enid Blyton for Grown Ups)
  • Five Lose Dad in the Garden Centre (Enid Blyton for Grown Ups)
  • Five Get Beach Body Ready (Enid Blyton for Grown Ups)
  • Five Get On the Property Ladder (Enid Blyton for Grown Ups)
  • Five at the Office Christmas Party (Enid Blyton for Grown Ups)
  • Five Get Gran Online

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