Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The Penderwicks at Point Mouette

by Jeanne Birdsall
narrated by Susan Denaker
New York : Random House/Listening Library, p2011.

In their third adventure, the Penderwick sisters are going on vacation. Their father and Ianthe are going on their honeymoon to England, Rosalind is going to New Jersey, and the other three girls are going to Point Mouette with their Aunt Claire. This leaves Skye as the OAP (oldest available Penderwick). She's not sure she can do it. What if something goes wrong? What if Batty's inconsolable, or drowns, or blows up?

Reading the Penderwick books reminds me of Otis. When I was a young kid, my family used to go to a family member's summer homes in this small town in the Berkshires. It was way in the woods, far from "civilization" and trouble and worry and real life, but it was an indelible part of my childhood summers and I have so many great memories of spending time with family there. Reading the Penderwicks is sort of like that. They're a generally happy family with small family woes, but somehow removed from Issues and violence, and it's just plain hard to be stressed when you listen to their everyday, modern-but-no-cell-phones stories. Is the plot line sometimes predictable and sappy? Well, yes, but who really cares when you're enjoying the interactions between Skye and Jane while the latter goes slightly gaga over a boy, and Batty tries to convince her older sisters that she really does enjoy music, and all the other true-to-life family interactions that made me laugh? I can't stay stressed when I read this books, and I loved every minute of the audio production.

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