Saturday, January 19, 2013

Henry Huggins (Henry Huggins #1) by Beverly Cleary


I never did read any of the Henry Huggins books when I was a kid, and boy, did I miss out!

Isabelle said she wanted to give this book 4 1/2 stars, and when I asked her why not 5 stars, she said, "Because it wasn't long enough." So, given that the only "problem" was that the book left her wanting more, I think 5 stars is a fair rating for both of us.

I really loved how good-natured Henry is. I'm not sure how old he is in the book - maybe 5th grade? He is basically an all-around good kid. As we watch him navigate his adventures (all of which are quite humorous!), we see that he is well-meaning, resourceful, and hard-working. He is not afraid of new experiences, he figures things out as he goes, and he is not easily frustrated, upset, or discouraged. I am sure Isabelle did not identify with Henry as much as she did with misunderstood Ramona and her growing pains, but I think Henry - like older, responsible Beezus - is a good role model for behavior.

When asked what she likes about this book, Isabelle said simply, "That Henry finds Ribsy." Though not all of the stories in this book involve Ribsy, it's clear that Henry and Ribsy have that special boy-and-his-dog relationship that is more akin to friendship than ownership.

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