My Itinerary ({: itinerary.length :})

{: event.badge :}

{: event.title :}

{: event.dates :} {: event.dateDescription :}
{: item :}
Suitable for {: item :}
1001 Stories Collection

Five Children on the Western Front

1001 Fivechildrenonthewesternfront
Added on 06th August 2020

Author Kate Saunders
First published 2014
Publisher Faber & Faber, London, UK

A poignant story which takes the much-loved characters from the classic novel by E Nesbit into the horror of the First World War.

Story

It is 1914 and the magical Psammead appears once again in the house of Anthea, Robert, Jane, Cyril, Lamb and Edie. His presence brings a hope of new adventures for the children, but it also helps the family understand the raging war, which is a setting for this moving and memorable novel. Before the last adventure comes to an end, Lamb and Edie will have seen the First World War from every possible viewpoint.

Why we chose it

A story that is both homage to a classic story, E Nesbit’s Five Children and It, and a moving portrayal of how the first world war changed the lives of one family.

Where it came from

Kate Saunders (1960-), is an actress, journalist and writer of many novels for adults and children. Five Children on the Western Front takes inspiration from Five Children and It. The five original children are nine years older and have a younger sister who is meeting the Psammead for the first time. It had occurred to Kate Saunders that the children in the original novel were just the right age to find themselves in the trenches in the First World War. Her story reunites them with the Psammead in 1914 just as Cyril as about to leave for the war.

Where it went next

In 2014, the novel won the Costa Children’s Book Award and was also shortlisted for the 2015 Guardian Children’s Book prize.

Associated stories

Other works by Saunders for children are: A Spell of Witches (1999), The Belfry Witches (2003), Cat and the Stinkwater War (2003), The Little Secret (2006), Beswitched (2010), Magicalamity (2011), The Whizz Pop Chocolate Shop (2012), The Curse of the Chocolate Phoenix (2013), Five Children on the Western Front (2014) and The Land of Neverendings (2017).

Added on 06th August 2020

Author Kate Saunders
First published 2014
Publisher Faber & Faber, London, UK