Chalet School

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The Chalet School is a series of approximately sixty school story novels by Elinor Brent-Dyer, initially published between 1925 and 1970. The school was initially located in Austria, moved to Guernsey in 1939, following the rise to power of the Nazi Party, then to "Plas Howell", a house on the border of England and Wales, then to St Briavels, close to the English - Welsh border and finally to Switzerland.[1]

Background and main characters[edit]

The Chalet School is founded in 1925 by Madge Bettany when her brother Dick has to return to his job in the Forestry Commission in India. She comes to the conclusion that starting a school would be a convenient way to generate some much-needed income, while also looking after her infirm younger sister Joey. Finding that suitable locations in England would be too expensive for her plans, she decides to look abroad, and finally settles on a large chalet in the Austrian Alps, conveniently providing a helpful climate for Joey's recuperation. Within a few years a sanatorium is built not far from the school, where tuberculosis patients convalesce. The founder, Dr Jem Russell, along with Dr Jack Maynard, provides assistance to members of the school and they eventually marry Madge and Joey respectively. Robin Humphries (in the later books Soeur Cécile) is also a main character, until she leaves the Chalet school to go to Oxford and later becomes a nun. The books then follow a variety of characters, including Daisy Venables, Bride Bettany and Gay Lambert, until Mary-Lou Trelawney comes to the school, and becomes the main character for several books. After she leaves school, in the later books, Joey's triplets, Len, Con & Margot, become main characters. The three main leads throughout the series are generally accepted to be Joey Bettany, Mary-Lou Trelawney and Len Maynard.

Throughout the series, various girls arrive at the school with personal problems, bad attitudes or behavioural issues. As a result of the ministrations of better-behaved classmates and the school mistresses, including Miss Annersley and Miss Wilson, they all tend to discover the error of their ways and become model pupils, or 'real Chalet School girls'. This formula of a troublesome new girl who reforms and conforms is most common in the later books.

Book details[edit]

Hardback[edit]

Chalet School books were originally published in hardback between 1925 and 1970 by W. & R. Chambers.[2]

Title Year
1 The School at the Chalet 1925
2 Jo of the Chalet School 1926
3 The Princess of the Chalet School 1927
4 The Head Girl of the Chalet School 1928
5 The Rivals of the Chalet School 1929
6 Eustacia Goes to the Chalet School 1930
7 The Chalet School and Jo 1931
8 The Chalet Girls in Camp 1932
9 The Exploits of the Chalet Girls 1933
10 The Chalet School and the Lintons [a] 1934
11 The New House at the Chalet School 1935
12 Jo Returns to the Chalet School 1936
13 The New Chalet School [b] 1938
14 The Chalet School in Exile 1940
15 The Chalet School Goes to It [c] 1941
16 The Highland Twins at the Chalet School 1942
17 Lavender Laughs in the Chalet School [d] 1943
18 Gay From China at the Chalet School [e] 1944
19 Jo to the Rescue 1945
20 Three Go to the Chalet School 1949
21 The Chalet School and the Island 1950
22 Peggy of the Chalet School 1950
23 Carola Storms the Chalet School 1951
24 The Wrong Chalet School 1952
25 Shocks for the Chalet School 1952
26 The Chalet School in the Oberland 1952
27 Bride Leads the Chalet School 1953
28 Changes for the Chalet School 1953
29 Joey Goes to the Oberland 1954
Title Year
30 The Chalet School and Barbara 1954
31 Tom Tackles the Chalet School [f] 1955
32 The Chalet School Does It Again 1955
33 A Chalet Girl from Kenya 1955
34 Mary-Lou of the Chalet School 1956
35 A Genius at the Chalet School [g] 1956
36 A Problem for the Chalet School 1956
37 The New Mistress at the Chalet School 1957
38 Excitements at the Chalet School 1957
39 The Coming of Age of the Chalet School 1958
40 The Chalet School and Richenda 1958
41 Trials for the Chalet School 1958
42 Theodora and the Chalet School 1959
43 Joey and Co in Tirol 1960
44 Ruey Richardson: Chaletian [h] 1960
45 A Leader in the Chalet School 1961
46 The Chalet School Wins the Trick 1961
47 A Future Chalet School Girl 1962
48 The Feud in the Chalet School 1962
49 The Chalet School Triplets 1963
50 The Chalet School Reunion 1963
51 Jane and the Chalet School 1964
52 Redheads at the Chalet School 1964
53 Adrienne and the Chalet School 1965
54 Summer Term at the Chalet School 1965
55 Challenge for the Chalet School 1966
56 Two Sams at the Chalet School 1967
57 Althea Joins the Chalet School 1969
58 Prefects of the Chalet School 1970


Paperback[edit]

The novels were reissued in paperback format between 1967 and 1995, usually with updated language, and some heavily abridged. A few were split into two paperback volumes, and several were retitled.[3]

Hardback Paperback
10 The Chalet School and the Lintons The Chalet School and the Lintons
A Rebel at the Chalet School
13 The New Chalet School The New Chalet School
A United Chalet School
15 The Chalet School Goes to It The Chalet School at War
17 Lavender Laughs in the Chalet School Lavender Leigh at the Chalet School
18 Gay From China at the Chalet School Gay Lambert at the Chalet School
35 A Genius at the Chalet School A Genius at the Chalet School
Chalet School Fête
44 Ruey Richardson: Chaletian Ruey Richardson at the Chalet School

Additional books[edit]

Title Year
The Chalet Book for Girls
 (including The Mystery at the Chalet School)
1947
The Second Chalet Book for Girls
 (including Tom Tackles the Chalet School, part 1)
1948
The Third Chalet Book for Girls
 (including Tom Tackles the Chalet School, part 2)
1949
The Chalet School and Rosalie 1951
The Chalet Girls’ Cookbook 1953
The Chalet Club News Letter Book 2004
Elinor M Brent Dyer's Short Stories 2005

Books by other authors[edit]

Several authors have written books about the Chalet School. Some of them follow on from the last book of the series, and others attempt to fill in some of the "gaps" in the earlier years of the school. All books are published by Girls Gone By Publishers (formerly Friends of the Chalet School) unless otherwise stated.

Prequel[edit]

This title describes the events which led to the founding of the Chalet School.

  • The Bettanys of Taverton High - Helen Barber (2008)

Fill in novels[edit]

This list contains all fill ins that have been published so far. The second title listed is the book that immediately precedes the respective fill in. Unless otherwise specified, all titles have been published by Girls Gone By Publishers, formerly Friends of the Chalet School Publishers.

  • Joey and Patricia: A Reunion in Guernsey - Helen McClelland (2000) Published by The New Chalet Club - The Chalet School in Exile
  • Gillian of the Chalet School - Carol Allan (2001) - The New Chalet School (and A United Chalet School)
  • The Chalet School and Robin - Caroline German (2003) - The Chalet School Goes to It
  • A Chalet School Headmistress - Helen Barber (2004) - Gay From China at the Chalet School
  • Visitors to the Chalet School - Helen McClelland (2004) First published by Bettany Press and later by Collins - The Princess of the Chalet School
  • Hilda Annersley: Headmistress - Lesley Green (2005) Published by Matador - Gay From China at the Chalet School
  • Peace Comes to the Chalet School - Katherine Bruce (2005) - The Chalet School and Rosalie
  • Juliet of the Chalet School - Caroline German (2006) - The Guides of the Chalet School
  • Two Chalet School Girls in India - Priyadarshini Narendra (2006) Published by Bettany Press- The New Chalet School (and A United Chalet School)
  • Cornelia of the Chalet School - Jackie Roberts (2009) Published by Yersinia Press - Three go to the Chalet School
  • The Guides of the Chalet School - Jane Berry (2009) - Jo of the Chalet School
  • Deira Joins the Chalet School - Caroline German (2010) - The Guides of the Chalet School
  • A Difficult Term for the Chalet School - Lisa Townsend (2011) - Three Go to the Chalet School
  • The Müller Twins at the Chalet School - Katherine Bruce (2012) - Jo Returns to the Chalet School

Sequels[edit]

The first book follows some of the Chalet School characters, though it is not set in the School itself. It is not recommended for younger readers.

  • Chalet Girls Grow Up - Merryn Williams (1998) Published by Plas Gwyn Books

These books follow on after Prefects of the Chalet School

  • New Beginnings at the Chalet School - Heather Paisley (1999 Published by Friends of the Chalet School and 2002 Published by GGB)
  • Nicola Goes To The Oberland - Josephine M. Hardman (2010) Published by Blurb (takes place over the year immediately following New Beginnings)
  • The Chalet School Librarian - Pat Willimott (2005) Published by Matador

The Chalet School on the Internet[edit]

  • Friends Of The Chalet School issue a quarterly magazine to members, and also run Girls Gone By Publishers re-publishing the books with the original text and illustrations, as Hardbacks can often reach hundreds of pounds on auction sites and elsewhere. Girls Gone By also publishes new novels set in the Chalet School universe.
  • In May 1995 the New Chalet Club was formed at the request of the late Helen McClelland, who became its first President until her death in November 2008. The Club produces regular Journals for members and has issued various supplements on EBD-related topics.
  • The Chaletian Bullet Board (CBB) is a forum where members discuss topics about Elinor Brent-Dyer and all of her published works, along with other Girls Own fiction. The site is however mainly dedicated to the Chalet School series.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ann Mackie-Hunter (May 1998). "The Chalet School's homes". Friends of the Chalet School. Retrieved 2008-03-20. 
  2. ^ "Complete Numerical List of Titles in the Chalet School Series". Friends of the Chalet School. Archived from the original on 2008-03-14. Retrieved 2008-03-21. 
  3. ^ "Chalet School reference list". The New Chalet Club. Retrieved 2008-03-20. 

External links[edit]