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The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy (2005)

de Jeanne Birdsall

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Séries: Penderwicks (1)

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5,5571931,864 (4.13)215
While vacationing with their widowed father in the Berkshire Mountains, four lovable sisters, ages four through twelve, share adventures with a local boy, much to the dismay of his snobbish mother.

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Mostrando 1-5 de 192 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
This is such a delightful book! My siblings and I needed something to listen to on a recent trip, and found this story engaging—a wonderful traveling companion. Somewhat reminiscent of Carol Ryrie Brink’s books or All-of-a-Kind Family, I thoroughly enjoyed the family aspects of the story. This isn’t a family on the verge of falling apart; each member is dedicated to everyone else, and they all work together toward a common goal (most of the time, anyway). This book is very character-driven, which I loved. There is a plot as well, but the highlight for me was how lifelike each character was—whether it was Rosalind, trying to take the place of their dead mother, impetuous Skye, distractible writer Jane, or excitable Batty. And Hound. You can’t forget him! Each character felt well-rounded, and though they got into their fair share of scrapes, the children weren’t deliberately naughty (most of the time, anyway).

It’s hard to know how to summarize my thoughts about the book because I loved it so much. There’s something about it—its whimsical fun, the fact that although it’s a modern story, the characters and events feel timeless (and the children aren’t stuck on phones or other devices!), or maybe just that this is generally a portrait of a family doing well—I loved it. It was good. If you enjoy stories about family and friendship, with a few high-jinks along the way, I’d highly recommend you check this book out. ( )
  EstherFilbrun | May 21, 2024 |
This summer the Penderwick sisters have a wonderful surprise: a holiday on the grounds of a beautiful estate called Arundel. Soon they are busy discovering the summertime magic of Arundel's sprawling gardens, treasure-filled attic, tame rabbits, and the cook who makes the best gingerbread in Massachusetts. But the best discovery of all is Jeffrey Tifton, son of Arundel's owner, who quickly proves to be the perfect companion for their adventures.

The icy-hearted Mrs. Tifton is not as pleased with the Penderwicks as Jeffrey is, though, and warns the new friends to stay out of trouble. Which, of course, they will--won't they? One thing's for sure: it will be a summer the Penderwicks will never forget.
  PlumfieldCH | Mar 21, 2024 |
{first of 5 of Penderwicks series; children's, summer holidays, adventure, family, friends}(2005)

Subtitled 'A summer tale of four sisters, two rabbits and a very interesting boy'.

I took a book bullet for this one last year. (My apologies, but I don't remember who fired it - I tend to go straight to the Overdrive websites for my libraries when I come across an interesting book in someone's thread and hunt around hoping I find it, by which time I've forgotten who sent me there. Often, though, it tends to be a few mentions over time which indicates that the book hit the spot with more than one LT friend.)

This was a National Book Award winner and has a gentle ambience but keeps you reading. It took me back to the books I grew up with though this is 21st century America and the classics I read were set in early 20th century Britain. It has that vibe of timeless, innocent summer holidays adventure without being saccharine - the dog running away, the children being chased by a bull or just counting frogs in the lily pond - plus it shows (doesn't tell) the interactions and tight bonds between the protagonists.

And they are: Rosalind, the responsible eldest Penderwick sister at twelve years old (and a half) who will be going into seventh grade after the summer; Skye, the only blonde haired, blue eyed sister, who is eleven and a bit of a maths prodigy;
'Cagney, these four are my pride and joy. The one with blond hair is my second daughter, Skye -'
'Blue Skye, blue eyes,' said Skye, opening wide her blue eyes to demonstrate.
'That's how you can remember which one she is,' said Jane. 'Blue eyes and straight blond hair. The rest of us have identical brown eyes and dark curly hair. People get me and Rosalind mixed up all the time.'
Jane is ten and writes books about her heroine Sabrina Starr for the family to read and she's also a great football (soccer) player. Batty, named after their mum, is four (though she does come across as more intelligible than most four year olds I've met) and the only one who really understands what
big, black, clumsy, lovable Hound Penderwick
is saying. Of course there's their dad, who is a botany professor and always throwing out Latin phrases, and they meet Jeffrey - the mysterious boy at the window - who lives at Arundel. And Arundel itself, a mansion in the Berkshire mountains {for those, like me, who don't know where that is, it's a subrange of the Appalachians located in west Massachusetts/ northwest Connecticut according to Wikipedia; far as I know, Berkshire is an English county} with gardens that Mrs Tifton, the snooty owner (who always mixes up Jane and Skye), wants to win the local garden contest. But the Penderwick family have taken the cottage in the grounds for the summer. And Mrs Tifton doesn't know that Hound is part of the family ...

I enjoyed this book and its ambience. It doesn't seem to have an unputdown-ness to it but I devoured it in a day or so between dentist visits and having family over for dinner. The Penderwick family are close, having lost their mother about four years ago, but the characters are not idealised - you can still see there is friction between the sisters at times. Fortunately they do have the MOOPS (Meetings Of the Older Penderwick Sisters) and MOPS (all four sisters) to enable them to uphold the Penderwick Family Honour. Their dad doesn't interfere with their holiday plans but when he does have to step in, he seems to be a fairly wise parent. And I liked Jeffrey; though an only child, he doesn't come across as spoiled and I was impressed by the way he interacts with Batty, the four year old. I love Hound. He's not Jasper (our dog) but I can see the similarity in thinking.

I really like the illustration that heads each chapter, too - it encapsulates the idea of children enjoying their summer holiday. (It seems to have been used as a cover on many editions of the book, too, but not the one I borrowed.)


Read it. It's a joyful, summery story with a lot of love and friendship to counteract the stresses of everyday life.

(January 2024)
4 stars ( )
  humouress | Feb 12, 2024 |
A decent, but not great, audiobook. The story itself is already precious enough and the narrator somehow made it even more precious.

So I find myself at odds again with the National Book Award judges. I was recently underwhelmed by [b:Flesh and Blood So Cheap|9414509|Flesh and Blood So Cheap|Albert Marrin|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1320525627s/9414509.jpg|14298621] and I was similarly underwhelmed by the Penderwick sisters and Jeffrey. It's a nice well-written book, and they're nice, well-written characters, but none of it thrilled me.

Also, in what year is it supposed to take place? Jane asks Mr. Penderwick if she can type up her story on his computer, but that's the only clue that this tale is happening in the modern world. The language and tone of the book certainly suggest an earlier time.

Maybe my job at a fairly rowdy public library, where it's not uncommon to hear and see young children saying and doing very un-Penderwick-like things, has jaded me--but I did not wistfully sigh at the sweetness and simplicity of this book. I rolled my eyes. Still, I appreciate why some people love it, and I didn't dislike it so much as I was disappointed by it. ( )
  LibrarianDest | Jan 3, 2024 |
Found the Penderwicks on a "like the Vanderbeekers" list and these sisters did not disappoint. They are a powerful bunch of characters with deep heart and adventure ( )
  hellokirsti | Jan 3, 2024 |
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Nome do autorFunçãoTipo de autorObra?Status
Birdsall, Jeanneautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Frankland, DavidIlustradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado


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For a long time after that summer, the four Penderwick sisters still talked of Arundel.
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The Hound Draw for Order was a time-honored ritual with the sisters. Names were written on small pieces of paper, then dropped on the ground along with bits of broken dog biscuit. As Hound snuffled among the biscuit pieces, he couldn't help but knock into the papers. The person whose paper the big nose hit first was given first choice.
“The cuter the boy, the mushier your brain.”
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While vacationing with their widowed father in the Berkshire Mountains, four lovable sisters, ages four through twelve, share adventures with a local boy, much to the dismay of his snobbish mother.

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