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1001 Flambards
Added on 27th August 2020

Author KM Peyton
First published 1967
Publisher Oxford University Press, UK

A trilogy (Flambards, The Edge of the Cloud, Flambards in Summer) which tells a coming of age story set in the early days of aviation as the world begins to change.


The series starts before the first world war when orphaned 12 year old Christina Russell is sent to live with her uncle at Flambards, an old country house fallen into disrepair since her uncle’s hunting accident years earlier. Christina finds her life bound up with her cousins, Mark who wants nothing more than to continue riding and hunting like his father and Will who longs for a new world, learning to fly in secret – and with Dick the stable boy who teaches her to ride.

Why we chose it

A trilogy set just before the first world war as the world began to change, horses gave way to new fangled motor cars and the first aviators took to the skies. A coming of age story which follows the fortunes of Christina as she negotiates the changing world and the attentions of both her very different cousins.

Where it came from

Peyton didn’t intend Flambards to be a children’s book. She wrote it as the first of a series of romantic novels but as Christina was 12 at the start of the book it was published under a children’s imprint.

Where it went next

The second book The Edge of the Cloud won the Carnegie media in 1969 and the trilogy won the Guardian children’s fiction prize in 1970. All three novels were adapted for a successful Yorkshire television drama serial in 1978.

KM Peyton later wrote a fourth novel, Flambards Revisited. In 2019 The Key to Flambards by Linda Newbery was published. Set in the present day it tells the story of the return to Flambards of one of Christina’s direct descendants.

Associated stories

K M Peyton was a prolific writer for children and young people, at one time publishing a book a year. Many of them had horsey themes including – Fly by Night, Poor Badger and The Swallow Tales. Her Pennington series tells the story of a young pianist. Her most recent novel, Wild Lily was published in 2016 and returns to the early days of aviation.

Added on 27th August 2020

Author KM Peyton
First published 1967
Publisher Oxford University Press, UK