July 12, 2011

The Pendericks at Point Mouette

Again, delightful.  My wife the fourth grade teacher and I had, of course, already read the first two.  So when this came out my daughter snapped it up for her Mama's early June birthday.  We were getting ready for a family trip to Maine, so we got the first two for the Kindle and read them out loud on the trip, finishing the second one a few days after our return.

So then we cracked the new one and recently finished it.  And it's about a family vacation to Maine!

It's a cool book in many ways but not the least of which is how Birdsall has changed things up a bit.  The father, new wife and her toddler are off in England, the eldest sister is off with friends to New Jersey.  So the rest of the clan go up to a cabin on the coast of Maine with Aunt Claire.  This makes the next oldest, Skye, the OAP (Oldest Available Penderwick) and she is not as comfortable in the role as her older sister which leads to hilarity and character growth.

There's a cool guy named Alec staying with his ornery dog next door and my wife and I immediately began betting whether he was going to be a love interest for Aunt Claire (understanding love is a theme of the book) or the missing father of their dear friend Jeffery.  We knew one or both of these would be the case the moment he appeared because Birdsall loves a big coincidence but somehow pulls them off with her characterizations.

One fun thing I noticed as we went through all three of them.  Birdsall likes to give props to other books and writers by having the characters mention them but I was especially happy at the cat named Asimov and Skye's enjoyment of Neil de Grasse Tyson's Death by Black Hole.  My daughter got some of the references (''Ivy and Bean!'') and knew who Neil de Grasse Tyson was!  What can I say, I'm a nerd and she watches Nova ScienceNOW with me on occasion.  She was impressed when I showed her my copy of Death by Black Hole.  At some point in one of the books the sisters all play the game of Clue.  She didn't know what that was so we ran out and picked it up (I thought I had one, but no).  Now, of course, she loves the game and I'm sure is happy because she learned about it from those awesome Penderwick girls.

A worthy addition to the series and we can't wait to hear more from these fun sisters and the interesting boys in their lives.

The Penderwicks at Pointe Mouette

Death by Black Hole