Parents' Guide to

The Borrowers

By Megan Potter, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 7+

Classic tale a bit slow but retains its appeal.

Book Mary Norton Fantasy 2003
The Borrowers Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 8+

Based on 5 parent reviews

age 8+

A great first book - read them all

I read this aloud to my sons who are 8 and 13 and they really enjoyed it. Obviously, they can both read, but the language is a bit difficult and it helped my 8 year old to have little explanations here and there. We like to read together, too, because then we can share in the fun of the story and make predictions about what will happen next. The first book is really interesting, because these tiny human-like creatures who live under the kitchen floor are discovered by a boy. The plot gets more intriguing and interesting, as the Borrowers learn to trust the boy. They are basically clean and wholesome books, but they do mention drinking and getting drunk (not overly much), but the topic is there and is presented in an entertaining manner. The drinking explains how an older lady is able to regularly talk to one of the Borrowers and not think she is crazy. I felt like it was okay for my 8 year old, but I don't think I would read this to younger children. The Borrowers is only the first book in the series. There are 4 more. We are reading the fourth book right now. So far, they have all been really fun and different. The overall theme of the books is to treat others with respect and also, that people who look different are still the same on the inside.
age 7+

So fun!

I had to read this book for a Children's literature class and I loved it so much I read it to my kids. They loved it just as much as I did.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (5 ):
Kids say (7 ):

While Mrs. May is recounting the wondrous tale of her brother's encounter with the Clock family to young Kate, your child will be equally enthralled. The descriptions of how the family uses our everyday trinkets fascinate children and often inspire them to create their own Borrower homes. Don't be surprised if, after the book is finished, you find your children crawling around the house looking for their own Borrowers.

Though it's often imitated in both books and movies, no one has ever managed to duplicate the appeal of Norton's infusion of magic into the everyday. Something about her cleverness and matter-of-fact style, and the humdrum lives to which the Borrowers aspire, makes the whole thing seem so plausible that it's hard to believe there aren't Borrowers scuttling through the walls and floors of your own home.

Book Details

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