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Author writes her name in history as nation’s favourite

PUBLISHED: 16:11 20 August 2008 | UPDATED: 10:03 12 August 2010

Enid Blyton

Enid Blyton

ENID Blyton has been voted best loved author of all time, pipping fellow children s writers JK Rowling and Roald Dahl to the literary post. Blyton, who spent her childhood in Beckenham and later became a teacher in Bickley, published more than 700 books

ENID Blyton has been voted best loved author of all time, pipping fellow children's writers JK Rowling and Roald Dahl to the literary post.

Blyton, who spent her childhood in Beckenham and later became a teacher in Bickley, published more than 700 books in her 40-year career and still sells eight million a year.

The poll was conducted by Costa Book Awards and included both children's and adult's books.

The creator of the Famous Five and The Faraway Tree series left classic novelist Jane Austen flagging after she came fourth, followed by William Shakespeare then Charles Dickens.

In seventh place was Lord of the Rings author JRR Tolkien, who came before murder mystery writer Agatha Christie.

Horror specialist Stephen King came ninth and Beatrix Potter was placed 10th.

Tony Summerfield of the Enid Blyton Society attributes her success to Britain's love of nostalgia.

He said: "A lot of people learned to read with Enid Blyton. She wrote great, imaginative stories in a simple and readable style."

Jeff Norton of Chorion, owner of the Enid Blyton estate, said: "We are delighted that the British public has voted Enid Blyton its best-loved author. Her storytelling is timeless.

"Blyton is so successful because of her imaginative, exciting and magical style. Her writing has sent countless young readers on thrilling adventures and we hope that new generations will continue to enjoy her enchanting stories.

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