Publisher's Note:  

This is the classic story--read and loved by children all over the world--of Pod, Homily, and their daughter, Arrietty, who live under the kitchen floor in a quiet, half-empty house and get their livelihood by borrowing from the “human beans.”

The Borrowers

by Mary Norton

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Overall Review:  

Have you ever wondered whatever happened to that misplaced watch? Or where do lost buttons end up? The Borrowers hold the answers to those questions. The borrowers are tiny people who live within the homes of real people and borrow – not steal—their objects, castoffs, and crumbs. This classic book was first published in 1953. It has stood the test of time by appealing to the wonder of magic and the possible in the impossible.

The characters are relatable and you quickly find you are fighting for their plights. It is told from the perspective of one who has not seen them, but believes in them still. Thus, an element of magic exists as to whether or not the story is real.


Young readers will connect well to the main character, Arrietty, and her curious nature, that sometimes gets her and her family into tough situations. The Borrowers is the first of five in the series.

Content Analysis:  

Profanity/Language:  None

Violence/Gore:  Character bedridden from hunting accident; report of death by animal; verbal threat of death via animal; character risks life to obtain objects; verbal threat of being hit by slipper for discipline; implied death of character; child character grabbed by arm by adult character; displacement from home by smoke; implied threat of dogs and cats; verbal threat of laying out dead characters on a newspaper.


Sex/Nudity:  None

Mature Subject Matter:  

Death, displacement from home, survival.

Alcohol / Drug Use:  

Adult characters drink wine; mention of drunk adults; mention of adults smoking all the time; character lives in a cigar box.

Reviewed By Lacey
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