Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Penderwicks

Ah...the Penderwicks series.  They are one of those wonderful children's books that can be read by everybody at any age and enjoyed.  If you are 5 or 85, these books are such fun reads

The first book introduces the four Penderwick sisters: Rosalind, Skye, Jane, and Batty and their father, Martin Penderwick, a botany professor.  Their mother is dead and they live in Connecticut, raised mostly by their father and their aunt.  Rosalind is calm, gentle, and slightly bossy.  Skye loves math, soccer, and astronomy.  She reminds me of a modern day Jo March, of Little Women.  Jane is a writer and her dramatic lines make me laugh.  Batty is the youngest and loves animals.  They are staying in a little cottage at the edge of the property of a great big mansion for a few weeks in the summer.  The girls have all kinds of wonderful adventures, from meeting the truly awful Mrs. Tifton and her very nice son named Jeffrey who live in the mansion, to a run-in with an angry bull.

The second book is set at the Penderwick's home, on Gardam Street.  There, the sisters have more adventures, but there is something that they're all worried about.  Their wonderful aunt Claire whom they all love appears with a blue letter written by their mother.  This letter tells their father that he needs to go on 4 dates in a month.  And so, the girls come up with the Save Daddy Plan, where they will find 4 awful dates for him and then he will be able to go back to normal life.  Along the way, there are a lot of funny parts, from Skye and Jane's writing mix-up, to Batty's adventures spying on the neighbors.

The third book is set at another summer vacation spot.  I can't fully tell about the plot because there would be spoilers galore.  Jane, Skye, and Batty go with their aunt Claire to Pointe Mouette in Maine for 2 weeks.  Skye is very anxious about this vacation because she is the OAP (Oldest Available Penderwick) for 2 whole weeks.  Their father, Martin Penderwick, is in England and Rosalind is finally getting a much-needed break with her best friend at the beach.  The whole story revolves around Skye, Jane, and Batty's vacation, which includes, much to their joy, their dear friend Jeffrey from the first book.

Jeanne Birdsall's plan is to write a total of 5 Penderwick books.  I can't wait to read the next one.  I highly recommend these books and hope that you enjoy them, too!