The Enid Blyton Adventure Series – Plot Synopsis – Book One: The Island of Adventure
This is the first book in the Adventure Series. In it we are introduced to the orphans Jack and Lucy-Ann Trent and their cockatoo, Kiki. They befriend Philip Mannering on holiday and when they discover their guardian is sick, accept Philip’s offer to spend the rest of the holiday with him at his new cliff top home in Cornwall, a house called Craggy Tops.
They are met at the station by Joe, a young friendly man, who helps Philip’s widowed mother, Allison, at her Art Gallery, and Philip’s sister, Dinah. As they leave they are followed by a stranger.
At Craggy Tops they meet the eccentric Uncle Joss, an ex-military man, who spent a lot of his career in India. Jack observes the uninhabited Island of Gloom, and wonders what species of wild birds nest there. Apparently the Island is surrounded by dangerous rocks and is almost unapproachable – much to Jack’s disappointment. At the Gallery Opening later that day, Allison meets Bill, the sinister stranger, who takes a keen interest in one of her paintings. Allison agrees to sell it to him, in spite of Joe wishing to buy it for himself. At the cottage, Bill removes the backing and finds bundles of counterfeit money.
The following day the children go exploring and accidentally find an old smugglers’ tunnel. The boys fall into it and are unable to climb out.
Philip and Jack follow the length of the tunnel to some stairs which lead to Craggy Tops cellar. They run back to the beach and surprise the girls.
Late that night, Jack unable to sleep because of Uncle Joss’s potent curry, is disturbed by a noise. Looking out of his window he sees Uncle Joss wandering off into the night. Waking Philip, Jack persuades him to follow. On the shore they discover a man, Jake, unloading packages from a boat. They flee when he chases them and seek shelter in the smuggler’s tunnel, only just making it to safety before the tide floods their escape route.
The next day Bill volunteers to take the children on a boat trip. They reluctantly agree as they are suspicious of this man after the antics of the previous night. Is he involved? Bill heads towards the Island of Gloom, and with the children’s help, drops a direction finder into the sea at the only point around the Island where access is possible. He then heads back to the mainland as the weather worsens.
After the picnic at Bill’s rented cottage, the kids leave. Dinah has forgotten her walkman. Returning to the cottage she overhears Bill on a CB radio and spies a gun. She warns the others.
The next day the children ‘borrow’ Joe’s boat and re-trace the route Bill took the previous day to the Island of Gloom. While there, Kiki inadvertently leads them to a disused mine shaft. While exploring the workings, the kids discover Jake and two workers printing counterfeit notes. Jack is caught and thrown into a storage room under lock and key. The others manage to escape after a harrowing chase. When they get back to the mainland they decide to get help.
The phone line at Craggy Tops is down so Philip goes to Bill’s cottage to use his CB. While he is away Dinah and Lucy-Ann discover Uncle Joss bound and gagged, apparently by Joe! Dinah notices a map on the wall and discovers another tunnel from Craggy Tops to the Island of Gloom.
Philip is discovered by Bill, who explains that he is a good guy out to bust a counterfeit ring. They head back to Craggy Tops, are shown the new tunnel by Dinah, and head off to rescue Jack leaving Dinah and Lucy-Ann kicking their heels in frustration.
Philip and Bill meet Jack who has managed to escape, but then get caught themselves by Joe and Jake. Joe decides to blow up the tunnel and evacuate the Island. Dinah and Lucy-Ann having duped Uncle Joss, turn up in the nick of time and free them. They just manage to escape before the explosion. The mine floods.
However, the special unit forces have been alerted and the baddies are captured. Joe tries to escape, injures Kiki, but falls to his death on the cliffs.
Allison forgives Bill for misleading her, Kiki recovers and the story ends happily with thoughts of shared adventures together in the future.