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Literature / The Naughtiest Girl

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The Naughtiest Girl is a series of novels written by Enid Blyton in the 1940s and 1950s. Elizabeth, a beautiful Spoiled Brat, is sent to a Boarding School after her sixth governess gets tired of her. The series was carried on by Anne Digby, with permission from Enid Blyton's copyright proprieters.


These novels provide examples of:

  • Accidental Tickle Torture: Happens to Jenny in Book Two courtesy of some white mice.
  • Adult Fear: Despite being a largely humorous kids book, there are a few notable examples involving this:
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    • Drowning, as it happens to a boy in Book Three.
  • Back to School: Book Two onwards.
  • Bathroom Stall of Overheard Insults: It doesn't happen in the bathroom, but Kathleen does overhear the other girls making fun of her.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Arabella and Martin, although in his case, only because he is desperate for people to like him.
  • Boarding School: Whyteleafe School, and an apparently fun one run by the students.
  • Character Development: Tons. Elizabeth becomes less spoiled, Joan becomes more confident, Kathleen Took a Level in Kindness, Robert stops bullying other children, Julian sobers up and takes his studies seriously, Rosemary gets over being Arabella's lap dog, Martin learns to be honest, Patrick stops competing with Julian and even Arabella matures a bit.
  • Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: Subverted and lampshaded. At one point, Elizabeth slaps Harry, and Nora tells her to apologize because Harry can't slap her back given that she [Elizabeth] is a girl. Also, Elizabeth gets her hair pulled by a boy on her first night for not going to bed, and then he threatens her.
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  • First Day Of School: Book One is this for Elizabeth.
  • Freudian Excuse: Robert bullies children because he is jealous of his little brother and Joan is sullen and awkward because of her parents neglect.
  • Grew a Spine: Joan. Also Rosemary, although only partially.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: Elizabeth.
  • Hot-Blooded: Elizabeth.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Elizabeth and Robert.
  • Meaningful Appearance: Often noted with Julian, highlighting his energetic sense of fun.
  • Parental Neglect: Joan's parents.
  • Poor Communication Kills: This seems to be a very common problem:
    • The Naughtiest Girl in the School: Because Joan doesn't tell her parents that she feels ignored, they don't notice it. And because Joan's parents don't tell them that they're still mourning her twin brother's death, she can't understand why they're upset.
    • The Naughtiest girl Is a Monitor: Elizabeth had a good reason for thinking that Julian was a thief. If they had talked about it instead of yelling at each other, Elizabeth wouldn't have had to quit being a monitor.
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  • Romantic Two-Girl Friendship: Elizabeth and Joan. Arabella and Rosemary. Eventually Jenny and Kathleen.
  • Teen Genius: Julian.
  • Turn in Your Badge: In the third book, Elizabeth is stripped of her position as a school monitor, partly because she wrongly accused Julian of stealing, partly because she has been in trouble for acting up in class. However, the accusation of theft was an honest mistake on her part and Julian later admits to playing pranks on Elizabeth to make it look as though she was misbehaving. The two characters quickly decide to forgive and forget and Elizabeth is subsequently reinstated.
  • Ship Tease: Elizabeth and Julian in Anne's Digby's later books.
  • Shrinking Violet: Joan initially. Also Rosemary.
  • Spoiled Brat: Elizabeth in the first book, Arabella in the third one. Julian also has shades of this.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Elizabeth and Joan. Elizabeth and Arabella.
  • You Are Grounded: Elizabeth's bad behaviour during her first two weeks at Whyteleafe School earns her a long list of punishments. She is ordered to go to bed half-an-hour earlier than her classmates, forcing her to miss out on the school's evening activities, as well as being banned from the few lessons she enjoys, made to spend her pocket money on getting her bedside rug (on which she has deliberately spilled ink) cleaned and forbidden to go down to the local village. It is at this point that she begins to turn over a new leaf, though her impulsiveness continues to get her into trouble.

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