Oh Wow Val--This may be my dream thread smile

We loved Fire Cat by the way...Let's see if I remember this correctly...

"You aren't a good cat and you're not a bad cat. You're a mixed up cat" (or something like that...).

I don't know where to start with a recommendation, we have so many favorites, but the age of your child made me remember (quite fondly) reading aloud the Betsy-Tacy books by Maud Hart Lovelace.

The series starts with Betsy-Tacy, which is actually my least favorite of the series. It has a slightly different style and Tacy's baby sister dies, which some children might find disturbing (although my usually very sensitive DD didn't seem bothered). In that book, Betsy and Tacy are 4-5 years old, so many young readers might enjoy that connection. The girls age a bit in each successive book, and in the 2nd or 3rd book, they are joined by the character of Tib. If you have concerns about the first book, it's very easy to start with the second book. You do need to read the books in order, however, where ever you decide to start.

Here's why I love this series.

1) It's set around the turn of the century (not our most recent turn smile )and has a small-town innocence throughout. The girls' adventures are rooted in a time when young children could wander their neighborhoods without constant supervision by adults.

2) It's a wonderful model for girls. Having read them as a young girl myself, I was a bit worried about how I'd feel about them as an adult. I was pleasantly surprised by how progressive they were both for the time they were set and for the time in which they were written.

3) Betsy, Tacy and Tib are wonderful characters. It's a treat to get to know them and to watch them grow up. There are wonderful life lessons in their experiences, great decisions (good and bad) to be talked about.

4) Because of the age range covered by the series, it's a series that could be read slowly over a few years. Maybe every birthday or start of school year (many of the books begin with the start of school) could be the occasion to start a new book.

I recommend this series as a read aloud for younger children and as an independent read or read aloud for older children. In retrospect, I wish that I had bought each book as we read them rather than checking them out of the library. I think that they would have been read and re-read if they'd been around the house.


Edited by Taminy (07/13/09 10:50 AM)
Edit Reason: name correction