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Lorna Hill or Jean Estoril?

(24 Posts)
mrssmiling Sat 04-Jun-16 18:18:05

I loved the Wells series, but never read the Drina books....having looked on Ebay, acquiring a set of the earlier books in both series seems affordable as a present. If you read both the Wells and Drina books as a child, which would you choose?

Bloodybridget Sat 04-Jun-16 20:16:20

I too loved Lorna Hill as a child, now I think they're pretty dreadful. All those incredibly bossy boys who are idolised by the females! And the ballet school scenes are quite hammy. I read some of Jean Estoril's too, don't remember them as well, but would hope they are not as sexist.

Bloodybridget Sat 04-Jun-16 20:18:37

mrssmiling sorry that sounds quite rude, criticising your love of LH! Didn't mean to be - as I say I also gobbled them up as a kid. The locations are great ...

hels71 Sun 05-Jun-16 08:00:16

I enjoyed drina, although I think the earlier ones were better than the later ones, which seemed to whizz through events very quickly.....

nonicknameseemsavailable Sun 05-Jun-16 23:26:10

I had the Drina books when they reprinted them in the 90s. I think I had 4 or perhaps 5 and really enjoyed them, they are in the loft. My sister never read them - she was older when they were reprinted but she liked the Lorna Hill ones and Noel Streatfield more, I preferred Drina. Not read them as an adult though so no idea if they would seem stupidly old fashioned now. DD2 will like them I am sure but she is a bit young at the moment, DD1 might like them soon though so might try them out on her.

WhattodoSue Mon 06-Jun-16 23:48:44

I loved Drina. The first 6 are the best. I read them to my DD. There is some very hard language for younger readers, but they are well written and I think the stand the test of time (largely). For the right child, they would be fantastic. They are old fashioned, but still lovely. As a child, I also loved Noel Streatfield, but Drina was my favourite. I never got into Lorna Hill.

MargotsDevil Sun 12-Jun-16 00:09:35

Drina without a doubt for me - I still have both sets.

CremeBrulee Sun 12-Jun-16 00:20:30

I loved the Wells book as a child (Veronica and Caroline were my heroes) and slowly collected most of them to share with DD. She did read a couple, but they were not really to her taste. I still love them and re-read then every few years.

Chocolate1985 Sun 12-Jun-16 13:04:18

I loved both series however I think the Wells books became quite formulaic whilst the Drina books were about her progressing through the ballet school and the different setbacks etc that she faced so would opt for Drina . Jean Estoril also wrote another short series The Ballet Family which I enjoyed as a child . I sometimes have dreams where I find there's other Drina books after Drina Ballerina! I sold that on eBay years ago and always regret it as its now selling sbout £30.

GrouchyKiwi Sun 12-Jun-16 13:13:41

I loved the Drina books. Must try to find them.

I liked the Wells books too, but not as much. I think what pp said about them being formulaic is correct.

gilmoregirl Sun 12-Jun-16 13:22:54

I loved the Lorna Hill books when I was an aspiring ballet dancer.... Still have them all now. Perhaps I should reread as one have fond memories of Sebastian (which maybe shatter base on what Bridget said!)

Have not read the other books you mention, but have you heard of Jean Ure? She wrote several ballet books, 'Nicola Mimosa' and 'a proper little Nuryev' which may also appeal?

GrouchyKiwi Sun 12-Jun-16 13:45:41

I also loved this series when I was younger.

LaurieMarlow Mon 13-Jun-16 14:01:34

Aw, don't make me choose OP. Lorna Hill's are more romantic (in all senses of the word) and I enjoyed the wider cast of characters. Sebastian must have been my first literary crush.

I liked the modernity of the Drina books. And the central storyline of her secret parenthood is thrilling. Drina herself did come across as a bit too composed and perfect though. And she should have married Igor.

WillowinGloves Mon 13-Jun-16 16:22:32

I re-read Drina recently and laughed quite a lot. She is so remarkably talented, while never realising it, she travels all the time, lives in a flat in Westminster and never realises how rich she is. And by the simple device of changing her name from Adamo to Adams, no one ever recognises her! But I loved them at the time, and did enjoy reading them again. I liked the locations, the London setting, and always loved Grant too! But I think my preference would still be for the Wells, though now I'll have to go back and re-read those to be sure ... I liked the many different characters that turned up in the various books and how they often met each other; also loved the contrast of the Northumberland parts.
Now what a joy to have both to discover - I envy whoever is going to get them!

Clawdy Tue 14-Jun-16 13:37:27

I was obsessed with the Lorna Hill books as a child, especially the Sadlers Wells series. I read a critique once which described them as fluffy shallow chick lit for kids, but then Julie Burchill of all people rubbished the claim, and said they were probably the only girls' novels at the time where the girls put their career before anything - being a dancer was the most important thing in their lives.

Bloodybridget Wed 15-Jun-16 20:35:26

Well, actually more than one of Lorna Hill's dancer heroines gives up her career to please a man.

Clawdy Wed 15-Jun-16 23:35:20

Was that the dancer in Swan Feather? Sylvia? Last read it when I was ten so can't remember!

SorrelForbes Wed 15-Jun-16 23:37:57

Jane I think? Although she had realised that she'd never be top notch like Veronica.

QuimReaper Wed 15-Jun-16 23:50:21

Good golly, I didn't know Drina was so popular! I read the first as a kid in the 90s but could never find the rest, found the second one about five years ago and both my sister and I read it and found it wasn't a patch on the first.

Always loved that Estoril named her heroine Drina and spent something like eighteen books leading up to the "Drina Ballerina" punchline grin

QuimReaper Wed 15-Jun-16 23:51:20

(Should say maybe reading Drina 2 in our twenties may have been the reason we weren't so enamoured with it as we had been when we were under 10 grin )

Bloodybridget Thu 16-Jun-16 09:18:52

Clawdy yes Jane does, and I can't remember who else but I'm sure one - doesn't Veronica eventually? She has a big row with Sebastian about not being there for his concert or whatever?

Clawdy Thu 16-Jun-16 12:29:46

I thought Veronica went on dancing for years and became Prima Ballerina Assoluta or some such title?! Didn't she appear with Sebastian briefly in a much later book when they were both major stars? Perhaps time for me to re-read 'em.......

Marcipex Thu 16-Jun-16 18:23:13

Drina by a long way.

Bloodybridget Thu 16-Jun-16 22:21:21

Clawdy you might be right.

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