Rosalind lives in India in the early 1900s. India at this time is a colony to Britain. (Similar to the time period in A Little Princess.) Rosalind’s mother is emotionally fragile after the death of Roslalind’s little brother and her father is a British officer who is rarely home. This leaves Rosalind with a lot of freedom. She sneaks out to the bazaar and roams the streets, falling in love with her home and its people.
When Rosalind’s Father returns from his deployment things are …tense. Father and daughter bitterly disagree about Indian freedom from British rule.
When Rosalind becomes too involved in the lives of the family’s Indian servents and when she sneaks off with her friend Max to hear a speech by Ghandi, Rosalind’s Dad becomes enraged. What teenager wants to hear this:
“…you are not to involve yourself in any way with what goes on in this country. Those who are older and wiser than you are have things well in hand. Is that understood?” (page 68)
But what if you DON’T think those who are older are wiser, what if you think they are just plain wrong? This headstrong girl who has the moxy to stand up for what she believes in, even to her Dad, was great to read about. The heated debates between father and daughter are some of the best parts. I also loved Rosalind’s relationships with her Indian friends and how she developed her own thoughts about Indian freedom from British rule based on her own experiences and not on what she read or what other people told her. This book reveals the dramatic changes Gandhi inspired that eventually lead to a free India.
I’ll warn you that the story ends when you wish it wouldn’t…and I can’t wait for the next one to find out what happens to Rosalind when she returns to India. (Her Dad gets so mad at her he sends her to England to school!) I’m thinking Max is going to turn up again and Rosy’s Dad is NOT going to be happy about it!
I knew that Big Nate actually started as a comic strip but I had never read it. Big Nate Out Loud is a compilation of several Big Nate comic strips – he is just as funny one strip at a time. Nate even tries to change school to make it more interesting: ”
Mr. Gavin, this worksheet on photosynthesis really isn’t working for me….We want to stop studying photosynthesis and start studying something GOOD!” (pages 57-58)
When that doesn’t work he tries to get Mr. Gavin to laugh. He cracks jokes, even science jokes, but nothing works until one of Nate’s classmates says,
“Mr. Gavin, Nate thinks he has a good chance to make the honor roll this term. What do YOU think?” (page 62)
That works! Apparently Nate is not exactly honor roll material! He’s too busy trying to impress Jenny to concentrate on his school work. He also likes complaining and pranks and asking a lot of questions to keep the teacher off topic. If you think about it you’ve probably got someone in your class like Nate already…or maybe that someone is YOU!
Jamie is still sure that she’s got life figured out – but if she does, how does she get herself mixed up in such crazy situations? This time it’s her birthday and she’s determined that there will NOT be a repeat of last year when her parents gave her a pogo stick instead of the cute puppy she wanted. That pogo stick DID turn into a puppy…that she describes as a “lumpy, toadish bucket of unpleasantness we know as Stink.” Long story. (In fact, it’s one of Jamie’s other adventures – see list below!) Anyway, Jamie has an all-time favorite band and doesn’t like people copying this like…so she pretends to like a different band to throw them off…which turns into a big Jamie-style mess at her birthday party. More fun from that crazy Jamie and her dumb diary. Author: Jim Benton
Skye, Jane and Batty are back for another Penderwick summer adventure. But where is Rosalind, the usual OAP (oldest available Penderwick)? She is off to spend two weeks with her friend at the beach while her sisters go to Maine to spend two weeks with Aunt Claire.
This leaves Skye, the second to oldest, in charge…and she isn’t too sure she wants to be! She is so nervous about her new responsibilities that she has been taking notes in preparation…she has six closely written pages stuffed into her backpack so she won’t forget a single thing. She wants to be absolutely sure that she takes care of her sister.
As it turns out, it isn’t the little sister that need Skye’s OAP talents…it’s the adults: Aunt Claire, Aunt Claire’s friend Alec & Jeffrey’s mother (who is still just as aweful as she was in the first two books!) Skye leads the kids as they help the adults unravel a giant wrong and make it right again.
I love a book that lets the characters be real people - nobody is perfection. I especially liked the giant wrong in this story. I won’t tell you what it is because that would ruin it…but I liked how the adults and the kids both worked their way through it – like people do in real life. Author: Jeanne Birdsall
And how do you say Mouette? I didn’t know so I looked it up. According to the Wiktionary mouette means seagull – which makes sense, since the Penderwicks are vacationing at a beach. The pronunciation is /mwɛt/. Hm. I would have guessed it was like ballet…and that the “t” at the end was silent. I would have guessed “mo-way” or “moo-way”. Shows what I know. Always look it up.
In Mac Slater Hunts the Cool Mac and his best friend Paul were noticed by The Coolhunters, a website that tries to discover the next cool thing. When they win an online cool contest the prize is a trip to New York and a new assignment…finding what’s cool in the big apple. Mac Slater vs The City is the story of Mac and Paul coolhunting in New York City – but do they really know what cool is outside of Kings Bay, their own little home town? It turns out cool is just as elusive as ever and the boys have to go on the down low to uncover what is truly unique in the city that never sleeps. Author: Tristan Bancks