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The Penderwicks
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A deliciously nostalgic and hilariously charming story of four sisters and their adventures/mishaps on holiday.

'A charmer of a book, and a page-turning read' - The Independent

About the Author

Jeanne Birdsall lives in Massachusetts, USA, with her husband, three cats, and a dog called Cagney. The Penderwicks was her first novel, and won the National Book Award for Young People's Literature. You can find out more about Jeanne (and her animal friends) at her website- www.jeannebirdsall.com.

Reviews

In our Best Books citation, PW said, "This timeless tale [and National Book Award winner] from a first-time author introduces the incomparable Penderwicks, on vacation in a rental cottage on a sprawling estate where lonely young Jeffrey lives. The sisters' delightfully diverse personalities propel the plot." Ages 8-12. (Mar.) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

Gr 4-6-This enjoyable tale of four sisters, a new friend, and his snooty mother is rollicking fun. The girls' father is a gentle, widowed botany professor who gives his daughters free reign but is always there to support or comfort them. Rosalind, 12, has become the mother figure. Skye, 11, is fierce and hot-tempered. Jane, 10, is a budding writer of mysteries who has the disconcerting habit of narrating aloud whatever is occurring around her. Batty, four, is an endearingly shy, loving child who always wears butterfly wings. The family dog, Hound, is her protector. The tale begins as the Penderwicks embark on a summer holiday in the Berkshire Mountains, at a cottage on the grounds of a posh mansion owned by the terribly snobbish Mrs. Tifton. Her son, Jeffrey, is a brilliant pianist, but her heart is set on him attending a military academy like her beloved father. The action involves Rosalind's unrequited love for the 18-year-old gardener, Skye's enmity and then friendship with Jeffrey, Jane's improvement in her melodramatic writing style, and Batty's encounter with an angry bull whom she rather hopefully calls "nice horsie." Problems are solved and lessons learned in this wonderful, humorous book that features characters whom readers will immediately love, as well as a superb writing style. Bring on more of the Penderwicks!-B. Allison Gray, John Jermain Library, Sag Harbor, NY Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Also making an appearance are a lonely young boy and a dependable yet dopey dog. Birdsall excels in developing characters, and her motley crew grows and develops in intriguing ways in this deeply enjoyable story of family and friendship. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

"A gentle book, with a philosophy of kindness to others and a message that children should confide their troubles to adults, who should always listen" * The Sunday Times *
"Despite a few mishaps, the children become fast friends and partners in the sorts of lively plots and pastoral pastimes we don't read much about these days. Their adventures and near-disasters, innocent crushes, escaped animals, owning-up and growing up (and yes, changes of heart) are satisfying and not-too-sweet" * Kirkus Reviews *
"Birdsall follows in the footsteps of Elizabeth Enright, Edward Eager, and Noel Streatfeild, updating the family story yet keeping all the old-fashioned charm" * Booklist *
"Nicely old-fashioned . . . what makes it so engaging are Birdsall's light humorous style and the varied, vivid characters. Great fun and a cosy, comforting read" * Books for Keeps *

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