Merry Christmas Everyone! This year’s Backlisted Christmas special celebrates Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfeild, a classic of children’s literature and the childhood favourite of our producer, Nicky Birch. We are joined by the writer Una McCormack and Tanya Kirk, the Lead Curator of Printed Heritage Collections (1601-1900) at the British Library, who are both lifetime Streatfeild fans. Ballet Shoes was an immediate bestseller upon publication and the runner-up for the inaugural Carnegie Medal. It has never been out of print and was the first in a series of ‘Shoes’ books by Streatfeild. It has been adapted many times both as an audiobook and for film and television and in 2019 BBC News included Ballet Shoes on its list of the 100 most influential novels of all time. We discuss why this might be the case and much more besides and even hear from Miss Streatfeild herself. And it being a Christmas episode, there is a fiendish festive quiz. We also feature two other classic books by writers best known through their writing for children. John discusses A Giant in the Snow by John Gordon, an eerie Puffin classic from 1968, while Andy revels in the darkness of John Christopher’s The Death of Grass, first published in 1956, a post-apocalyptic science fiction novel, definitely written for adults and perfect for cutting through your post-lunch torpor. Enjoy!
Timings: (may differ due to variable advert length)
16:39 A Giant in the Snow by John Gordon
22:04 The Death of Grass by John Christopher
29:32 Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfeild
* To purchase any of the books mentioned in this episode please visit our bookshop at uk.bookshop.org/shop/backlisted where all profits help to sustain this podcast and UK independent bookshops.
* For information about everything mentioned in this episode visit www.backlisted.fm
* If you'd like to support the show, receive the show early and get extra bonus fortnightly episodes, become a Patreon at www.patreon.com/backlisted
Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Current and classic episodes, featuring compelling true-crime mysteries, powerful documentaries and in-depth investigations.
If you can never get enough true crime... Congratulations, you’ve found your people.
Stuff You Should Know
If you've ever wanted to know about champagne, satanism, the Stonewall Uprising, chaos theory, LSD, El Nino, true crime and Rosa Parks then look no further. Josh and Chuck have you covered.