What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

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UNSOLVED: One specific book > Children's book, early 20th century, about 3 kids stranded on a boat, ate sweets with "mottoes"

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message 1: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 1531 comments This was a book I read at my grandparents' house when I was a child. I read it around 1990 but it seemed old-fashioned; I would guess it was published in the early 20th century and I think it was a British book.

The plot was that three children had somehow become stranded on a boat out at sea (I don't know how they got there). There was an older girl who took charge of the situation, and two younger children (a boy and a girl, I think) who were her siblings or cousins.

The older girl became ill or unconscious for a while and the younger children had to look after themselves so they decided to ration the food very carefully. Later the older girl got better and told them off for rationing the food and they all ate a big meal. This seems like a bad idea to me, but they got rescued soon afterwards so everything was OK!

I remember them eating sweets which were described as striped with "mottoes" on them. I took this to mean they had writing on them, like sticks of rock or Love Hearts sweets.

The other strange thing is that I only remember the ending of this book. I think maybe the earlier pages were missing from the book, or else I was reading an extract or maybe the second book in a series. I remember it being a hardback with a dark red cover.


message 3: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 1531 comments Looks plausible, although I don't remember the children looking for anything in particular (this book sounds like they are on a quest) - but I will try and get hold of a copy to check it out. Thanks for your suggestion.


message 4: by Kris (new)

Kris | 35148 comments Mod
Dangerous Island by Helen Mather-Smith Mindlin?

Here are some reviewers' comments on Amazon:

"...the story of three children who are washed out to sea through Brigantine Inlet when their homemade raft breaks free from its moorings. The children come to rest on a mysterious, rocky isle which seems to be slowly sinking. The childrens' struggle to survive and eventual rescue move the story at a good pace, after a rather slow beginning."

"...three children who get shipwrecked on an island made of rocks. They are stuck there for four days because they cannot get a ship or airplane to come rescue them. They catch fish and crabs to eat, because they do not have much food left." Gold is mentioned.


message 5: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 1531 comments Thanks Kris, I remember in the book I read the children were stuck on the boat and I don't think they ever reached land until they were rescued - but I will check it out just in case, as it's been so long since I read it!


message 6: by Trillian (new)

Trillian | 77 comments I can't remember much about it, but possibly We Didn't Mean to Go to Sea by Arthur Ransome.


message 7: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 1531 comments That sounds like a possibility, Trillian. I will try and get hold of a copy.


message 8: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39296 comments Mod
Rachel, any luck getting a copy of "We Didn't Mean to Go to Sea"?


message 9: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 1531 comments Thanks for the reminder! I did skim through a copy but couldn't find the part about sweets with mottoes. The rest of the book did seem familiar though. Possibly I was confusing two different books. Or maybe it was a Readers Digest type book with a few different extracts that got merged in my memory.


message 10: by Rainbowheart (new)

Rainbowheart | 19036 comments Still looking for this one?


message 11: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 1531 comments Still looking!


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