Diamond in the Sky by Malcolm Saville

The last in Malcolm Saville’s Buckingham series, set in Amsterdam, which makes this one of the more exotic settings for his highly enjoyable adventure stories for children. The usual ingredients of a mystery plot, gutsy and clever children outwitting sinister adults, kindly and non-interfering parents, not forgetting the Saville trademark: terrific descriptions of place, are all there. 
What struck me with Diamond in the Sky, and I have read a great many of Saville’s books, is the place accorded to the young women, although I couldn’t help but smile at the fact that of the four described, three are plucky and determined British girls and one is a nice, but rather pathetic, Dutch girl. Malcolm Saville had obviously got round to absorbing women’s lib a little, but for British girls only – can’t expect those foreigners to be as advanced…
I am an enormous fan of this children’s author, who, in my view, should be far better remembered than he is. It’s so nice that his most famous series, the Lone Pine books is currently being published in very nice paperback editions by Girls Gone By Publishers. I hope that they bring out all 20, and then tackle the Marston Baines, Buckingham, Jillies, Nettleford and Susan & Bill series…

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