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Registered Members => Book Talk => Topic started by: olmue on June 05, 2011, 02:19 PM

Title: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: olmue on June 05, 2011, 02:19 PM
Even though I'm much more of a YA reader and like action and romance and edge of your seat danger, I really, really, really love the Penderwicks! So this is my thread on Penderwick love. Feel free to add your thoughts. :)

I like how the books have a summery relaxation to them--but still have a plot. (I hate books without plot.) I love the great voice without huge backstory dumps. I love Batty. I love Jeffrey. (But I hate Mrs. Tifton.)

I've heard some people say it's out of touch with today's kids. I think it all depends on where you live. (I'm sure some people would think I was living in fantasyland if I wrote the things I saw every day on my street in rural Idaho.) I love how it's a celebration of unscheduled creativity. Also, my kids love the books, too.

Anyway. I just finished the third book on the sly (I'm supposed to be reading it slowly aloud to my girls) and wanted to tell someone how much I enjoyed it. I hope others like it, too!
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: AnneN on June 05, 2011, 02:37 PM
The Penderwicks make me happy!
:hearts
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: J.Ro on June 05, 2011, 02:40 PM
Ditto.  I loved the first two.  Haven't read the third.  And I loved the 2nd as much as the first.  Each character is so lovingly drawn and so clear and so perfect for their age - and it is old-fashioned, but it's modern too! :love4:  :love4: :love4:

I really like Hilary McKay too - I read Indigo's Star recently and it was like a quirky British version of the Penderwicks.

Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: 217mom on June 05, 2011, 04:14 PM
This was a favorite of my daughter's just a few years ago.

What I love about it is the old-fashioned story telling and format, 'proving' (to those who need proof) that this sort of story never went away.

I wish the multi-character, so-called-'episodic' family story, one where the magic is real and does not rest on a wand- I wish there were more like this published now.
(If I had a wand, I'd wave it to get my wish.)
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: Ruth Donnelly on June 05, 2011, 05:29 PM
:goodthread:
I'm reading the second one right now. The characterization is so good, I think I would know those girls if I met them on the street. And the dialogue is sheer perfection, with lots of wonderful subtext. I keep reading snatches out loud to my husband, whether he wants to listen or not.
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: Danyelle on June 05, 2011, 10:26 PM
I *adore* The Penderwicks! I didn't realize the third book was out. *adds it to my TBR tower*
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: mrh on June 06, 2011, 12:38 PM
Everything you all said. I love, love, love, love The Penderwicks. I was so excited when the first book won the National Book Award, because in my heart I believed there was still an audience for this kind of book that had never really gone away.

I didn't know the third book was out, either. I hope to get my little hands on it ASAP.  :bluebunny:
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: cindoh on June 06, 2011, 03:49 PM
I'm adding my love... just read all three of these within the last two weeks, and then my 11 year old did the same... and also fell in love.

For anyone who has read the third book, and I don't want to be a spoiler in any way, but did you have issues with the character's reaction to the main event that happened in the story (is that vague enough?) I had trouble buying it--and because of that, didn't care for #3 as much as the first two.
(But hesitate to say anything negative about the Penderwicks because I think the series is so extraordinary in so many ways.)
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: olmue on June 06, 2011, 05:36 PM
I figure different people react differently--I can see why the character might have a lot of conflicting feelings to that main event, so although I may not have reacted exactly the same way, it didn't bother me.
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: austen on June 11, 2011, 11:32 AM
I love the Penderwicks and was so excited when I found out she'd written a 3rd book!
I just finished it last night (after reading it in 48 hours).
As to the "main event," it didn't bother me that much. I thought she
portrayed the character's conflicted emotions quite well, in fact. But it might be a personal thing,
because I didn't like #2 as much because I didn't buy the characters' reactions as well.
As I was reading #3, I saw a lot of connections to Little Women.
Skye being like Jo (in some ways), and Batty a lot like Amy. I was specifically thinking of them
in terms of their relationship with Jeffrey. Any one else see that?
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: mrh on June 13, 2011, 11:18 AM
As I was reading #3, I saw a lot of connections to Little Women.
Skye being like Jo (in some ways), and Batty a lot like Amy. I was specifically thinking of them
in terms of their relationship with Jeffrey. Any one else see that?

Wow -- I hadn't thought of that. I think you may be on to something.
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: olmue on June 13, 2011, 11:59 AM
Batty's a LOT more likable than Amy, IMO!

Jane has the writing thing like Jo--but Skye is the one I most identify with, and who I think has the closest relationship with Jeffrey. Well, and Batty. I always found the Amy + Laurie/Jo doesn't like Laurie even though they're the closest thing annoying, so I hope Penderwicks doesn't mirror that too much! Although I don't see the series covering that many years, either.
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: austen on June 13, 2011, 03:19 PM
I hope it doesn't go that direction either. I didn't like that about Little Women either!
I think it was Jane's comment that Jeffrey just wants to be in their family that made
me think that. (I think they say that about Laurie too.)And Batty is the one who wants to marry Jeffrey.

I like Batty a lot better, too, and it seems like Jane and Skye are different sides to Jo's personality.
Title: Re: The Penderwicks, Jeanne Birdsall
Post by: lindsay on June 13, 2011, 07:23 PM
Love The Penderwicks :)