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The Ship That Flew: Historical Fiction for Teens

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The model Viking ship lay in the window of a little old shop in an unfamiliar back street, and Peter, on his way to the dentist, lost his heart to it at once. It cost him all the money in hist pocket, including the fare home. That was how he came to take the way along the beach which led him into grave danger, but also opened his eyes to the magic properties of the little The model Viking ship lay in the window of a little old shop in an unfamiliar back street, and Peter, on his way to the dentist, lost his heart to it at once. It cost him all the money in hist pocket, including the fare home. That was how he came to take the way along the beach which led him into grave danger, but also opened his eyes to the magic properties of the little ship in his hand—the ship that flew. "When Peter sees the model ship in the shop window, he wants it more than anything else on Earth. But this is no ordinary model. The ship takes Peter and the other children on magical flights, wherever they ask to go. Time after time the magic ship takes them on different exciting adventures, to different countries, and to different times." GoodReads.com


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The model Viking ship lay in the window of a little old shop in an unfamiliar back street, and Peter, on his way to the dentist, lost his heart to it at once. It cost him all the money in hist pocket, including the fare home. That was how he came to take the way along the beach which led him into grave danger, but also opened his eyes to the magic properties of the little The model Viking ship lay in the window of a little old shop in an unfamiliar back street, and Peter, on his way to the dentist, lost his heart to it at once. It cost him all the money in hist pocket, including the fare home. That was how he came to take the way along the beach which led him into grave danger, but also opened his eyes to the magic properties of the little ship in his hand—the ship that flew. "When Peter sees the model ship in the shop window, he wants it more than anything else on Earth. But this is no ordinary model. The ship takes Peter and the other children on magical flights, wherever they ask to go. Time after time the magic ship takes them on different exciting adventures, to different countries, and to different times." GoodReads.com

30 review for The Ship That Flew: Historical Fiction for Teens

  1. 4 out of 5

    Rose

    When my mother and grandparents when on sabbatical in Nottingham, they lived next door to Hilda Lewis who gave my family several copies (the book came out in 1939). Years later when I was little my mother pulled this book out and it became one of my most beloved and cherished books. It is one of the most enchanting tales I will ever read. Though I haven't read it in years (seeing as it lives on my mum's bookshelf and not my own), I can recall it to memory clearly. The story of Peter and his brot When my mother and grandparents when on sabbatical in Nottingham, they lived next door to Hilda Lewis who gave my family several copies (the book came out in 1939). Years later when I was little my mother pulled this book out and it became one of my most beloved and cherished books. It is one of the most enchanting tales I will ever read. Though I haven't read it in years (seeing as it lives on my mum's bookshelf and not my own), I can recall it to memory clearly. The story of Peter and his brother and sisters is timeless. It travels through ancient Egypt, Normandy England, the Norse Gods and several other places and times. The language is beautiful and just is filled with love and joy. I recently discovered the book was reprinted in 1998. Perhaps I can get myself a copy.

  2. 4 out of 5

    CLM

    Fantasy about four children and their magical travels. In a dark little shop, in a dark little street, Peter finds a little ship that costs him "all the money he has in the world - "and a bit over." This seems like a high price but it takes him into a magical world. * * * I read the first chapter to my nephew this morning and he ate it up. Even just telling him the title: The Magic Begins brought a smile to his face. He took the shillings and pence in stride. My sister and I told him how mysterious Fantasy about four children and their magical travels. In a dark little shop, in a dark little street, Peter finds a little ship that costs him "all the money he has in the world - "and a bit over." This seems like a high price but it takes him into a magical world. * * * I read the first chapter to my nephew this morning and he ate it up. Even just telling him the title: The Magic Begins brought a smile to his face. He took the shillings and pence in stride. My sister and I told him how mysterious dark little streets and shops are a clue in books that something exciting and possibly magical is going to happen and he nodded intently, memorizing that piece of knowledge. The younger brother, like Alice, wanted to know if there were pictures and conversation, and there weren't enough pictures to hold his interest so he clambered down.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Laurel

    It was funny for me to discover a book like this that I missed as a kid. It shares so much with my favorite childhod books-- Eager, Nesbit, Lewis-- and I enjoyed it a lot. But it misses some of the humor, and also some of the complexity. It falls just a little short. One thing I enjoyed, while reading it, was thinking about how we follow rules for POV in kidlit today that older authors didn't seem to bother with. I found this book swooped into the minds of all the characters in a somewhat inconsi It was funny for me to discover a book like this that I missed as a kid. It shares so much with my favorite childhod books-- Eager, Nesbit, Lewis-- and I enjoyed it a lot. But it misses some of the humor, and also some of the complexity. It falls just a little short. One thing I enjoyed, while reading it, was thinking about how we follow rules for POV in kidlit today that older authors didn't seem to bother with. I found this book swooped into the minds of all the characters in a somewhat inconsistent way. It didn't bother me at all, but it did get me thinking about why we observe the literary habits we observe.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance

    This was my favorite kind of story when I was a little girl. If I'd been able to find a copy on the shelves of my library, I would have checked it out and read it over and over. The Ship That Flew is the story of four siblings, two brothers and two sisters. One of the brothers, Peter, sees a ship in a shop window and buys it with "all the money he has," a few coins. He soon learns the ship is magic and the children embark on a series of wonderful adventures, traveling to ancient Egypt, Norman Eng This was my favorite kind of story when I was a little girl. If I'd been able to find a copy on the shelves of my library, I would have checked it out and read it over and over. The Ship That Flew is the story of four siblings, two brothers and two sisters. One of the brothers, Peter, sees a ship in a shop window and buys it with "all the money he has," a few coins. He soon learns the ship is magic and the children embark on a series of wonderful adventures, traveling to ancient Egypt, Norman England, the home of the Norse Gods, and many other exotic and delightful places. This book is a wonderland of fun and adventure. I love this story.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Kristina

    I don't even know - couldn't guess - how many times I took this book out of the library when I was a kid. It went home with me over, and over and over again. It's actually a little disturbing to me to hold it in a brand-new paperback instead of in the worn library-bound hardcover that I cherished as a child - but I'm thrilled that it's back in print. I grew up waiting for magic on every corner. My favourites were this lovely little book from Hilda Lewis, ANYTHING by E. Nesbit, and of course, all I don't even know - couldn't guess - how many times I took this book out of the library when I was a kid. It went home with me over, and over and over again. It's actually a little disturbing to me to hold it in a brand-new paperback instead of in the worn library-bound hardcover that I cherished as a child - but I'm thrilled that it's back in print. I grew up waiting for magic on every corner. My favourites were this lovely little book from Hilda Lewis, ANYTHING by E. Nesbit, and of course, all of Edgar Eager books. Now it's time - past time! - to share this treasure with my girls. I bought it for Caroline for Christmas in 2010, but she hadn't read it yet, so here it is for us in British History. I can't wait to read about the Normans with the girls, after covering that part of history this week. I think they'll have a richer appreciation of the story than I ever did. It's an absolute joy to share these childhood treasures with my girls.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Ivan

    This book is very much like Five Children and It by E. Nesbit and Half Magic by Edward Eager though I liked it more. It was episodic (which isn't always my favorite), but the adventures seemed well thought out and the children protagonists were well written. I think I'd have liked this even more had I read it prior to the other two. So, this book follows a bit of a formula, but it does it with style and ingenuity (it isn't a copy or rip-off in any way). I recommend it. This book is very much like Five Children and It by E. Nesbit and Half Magic by Edward Eager though I liked it more. It was episodic (which isn't always my favorite), but the adventures seemed well thought out and the children protagonists were well written. I think I'd have liked this even more had I read it prior to the other two. So, this book follows a bit of a formula, but it does it with style and ingenuity (it isn't a copy or rip-off in any way). I recommend it.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mary JL

    During a snowy week in winter, my 5th grade teacher read this book to our class during the noon recess as we were not allowed out (too cold). I was nine. I enjoyed it so much after the teacher finished it, I checked it out of the library and re-read it. Several times in the next two years. It is a wonderful magic and time travel fantasy, originally published in England in 1939. Later, the US edition come out in 1958. In an old curio shop, Peter buys a small toy boat for "all the money he has in the During a snowy week in winter, my 5th grade teacher read this book to our class during the noon recess as we were not allowed out (too cold). I was nine. I enjoyed it so much after the teacher finished it, I checked it out of the library and re-read it. Several times in the next two years. It is a wonderful magic and time travel fantasy, originally published in England in 1939. Later, the US edition come out in 1958. In an old curio shop, Peter buys a small toy boat for "all the money he has in the world---and a bit more." (and it was true he remembered later, for he gave the seller a bit of his father's pocket change as well.) Peter, his brother, and his two sisters soon find the Ship can fly them anywhere---including the past. A series of very amusing and exciting adventures takes place. If you are every fortunate to find a copy, grab it. Before you pass it on to your children or nieces and nephews, read it yourself. Fifty years ago and I still remember it. P.s. Help! I can recall the story but only Peter's name. What were the other three?! Reade sometime in 1959.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Sonia

    A childhood favorite. I think I read and reread this book over a dozen times from the age of 9-12.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Christine

    I read this book in middle school while waiting for the next Harry Potter. If you are able to find a copy of it in a library or a thrift store, grab it because it's amazing! It's similar to The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe in that there are four children and they go on adventures. Let's just say the ship also brought me to places and times as I read it. Quite an incredibly fantasy book that will certainly stir up your imagination!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Eugene

    Stumbled across this in a secondhand bookshop and what a find! Brilliant. Ingenious. Imaginative. Had I read it as a child I have no doubt it would still be one of my favourite books! The way the author wraps it up is particularly lovely (giving nothing away!).

  11. 5 out of 5

    Yuma

    my dad couldnt get it in america so he ordered it all the way from england its very good its about 4 children the oldest stumbles into a store hes never seen he buys a goat with everything he has and a little bit more they go to different times, and different locations. they meet different people make friends but as they expierence a different adventure they learn something new about the boat.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Zowie Barham

    The epitome of escapism. I used to read my school's copy of this at least once a month as a child, and will never forget my excitement when it was republished and I got my own copy. This timeless classic proves that a good children's story doesn't need teenage angst, dating or vampires room provide entertainment.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Amber Scaife

    A young boy finds a magic toy boat in a magic shop, and he and his brother and two sisters have all sorts of adventures flying through time in it. I loved it. A predecessor to The Magic Treehouse books, but much better. I love that the boat turns out to be Frey's, and the encounters between the kids and the Norse gods are great. Definitely recommended.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Teresa

    Loved this book as a child. I have spent years trying to find it because I could not remember the title or author. Finally found it on Good Reads! I just reread it. Not quite as good as I remembered which is interesting because there are many childhood books that I still appreciate. However I still love the idea of ship that can take you any place in the world or time.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Han

    A formative childhood book. The line "All the money in the world and a little bit more" has never left me as a concept, and I am always on the look out for small cluttered curio shops that have always been there yet have never seen before.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Marlene De leeuw-cain

    I can' remember where I got this book. I own it in hard cover. It has traveled the world with me. I read it to my children when they were small. I hope to read it to my grand children. The grand adventures of the four children made every chapter anticipated.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Fiona Sumner

    I loved it as a child and one of the most most (mis- ?)quoted phases in my vocabulary is 'All the money you have in the world plus a bit more..' I still see funny little shops in old back lanes and wonder.... Dying to read it again

  18. 4 out of 5

    Peter P-t

    This is an old favourite of mine, given to me by my English grandmother as a child. My son, just turned eight years old, loves it. We're on our third or fourth reading of the book.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Nancy

    Delightful! Kids have adventures with a magical ship. 1939 Great Britain

  20. 5 out of 5

    Hk

    This is the first novel I read that really captured my imagination and fostered my love of reading. I'd love to find a hard copy of it

  21. 4 out of 5

    Child960801

    I first read this as a kid and it's still a favourite.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Paul Allen

    First read this at school in 1972. Out of print for decades. Then republished and now a treasured book. Great time travel story using a magic Viking ship. Brilliant story for 10+ upwards.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Joyce

    a magical historical fiction, time travel--deliciously imaginative...I don't think the other titles that popped up are by the same Hilda Lewis though (the Harlot Queen?)

  24. 4 out of 5

    Fiona

    This Ship that Flew is probably one of my earliest memories. My dad used to read to me at bedtime when he wasn't working and this was always the book I chose. He was given a copy when he a child and when I moved out it came with me. This book started my love of history, reading about the adventures and fun they had. I even named my youngest son Peter because of how much I love this book.

  25. 5 out of 5

    P.S. Winn

    This is a magical adventure great for kids, young adults and even adults. A bit like Peter Pan the magical ship takes kids into amazing journeys.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Marsha Valance

    Peter buys Skidbladnir, the ship of the Norse gods, in a pawnshop and takes his siblings on wondrous adventures through time and space.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jaylene

  28. 4 out of 5

    Kristoffersonsmom

  29. 5 out of 5

    Susan Brown

  30. 5 out of 5

    Bernard James

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