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Beverly Cleary really nailed , didn't she?

(21 Posts)
CheerfulYank Thu 10-Jul-14 04:03:31

Just reading one of the Ramona books to DS. I loved them as a child and am delighted that he does too.

What strikes me reading them now is how amazing a grasp she has on how children really feel-even her books written decades ago ring true.

Anyone else love them? smile Are they read much in the UK?

CheerfulYank Thu 10-Jul-14 04:04:00

Nailed it hmm

Coughle Thu 10-Jul-14 04:21:57

I love them! Can't wait till the dc are old enough. I still remember receiving a set of them for my seventh birthday and a whole new world opened up...

lettertoherms Thu 10-Jul-14 04:25:08

Yes! Absolutely! I'm also in the US to be fair. Totally understands how children think/feel. Ramona's rain boots, and taking the first bite of every apple, and getting her library card... they feel like moments out of my own childhood.

lettertoherms Thu 10-Jul-14 04:28:07

This has me thinking of other children's authors that just seem to get it.

For older kids, Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, Jean Craighead George, and Katherine Paterson.

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Thu 10-Jul-14 05:29:29

We're reading Ramona now too; DD1 is 5.5, with a bossy younger sister, and I think Beezus and Ramona was the first time in her whole life that she felt like a book understood her. All those books about talking mice and fairy wonderlands and magical chocolate factories are lovely, and everything. But Clearly writes about being a little girl, and I think it just utterly, utterly blew her mind. I'm so happy about it!

KnappShappeyShipwright Thu 10-Jul-14 05:42:58

One of the few authors that my children have loved as much as I did. smile

AggressiveBunting Thu 10-Jul-14 06:23:03

I loved them but I spent many hours puzzling over some of the American terminology, like what was a graham cracker??

lettertoherms Thu 10-Jul-14 06:30:30

A graham cracker is a thin crunchy slightly sweet honey flavored biscuit thing.

I've heard of people using digestive biscuits as substitutes in baking but I don't think they're the same?

lettertoherms Thu 10-Jul-14 06:31:59

I just realized you may have meant that as you spent time wondering at the time, and not that you still did. blush

BikeRunSki Thu 10-Jul-14 06:33:28

Oh yes!!! I think I was about 7 or 8 when I read the . Definitely were books I read to myself.

Judy Blume falls into "nailed it" category too.

AveryJessup Thu 10-Jul-14 06:41:05

Absolutely! I LOVED the Ramona books growing up. There were lots of books I loved to read but Ramona really held a special place in my heart and made a lasting impression on me when I was 6 or 7.

Recently I was visiting Portland (where Beverly Clearly was from and set her books) and bought a couple of the Ramona books that I remembered in Powell's bookstore. Re-reading them it really struck me how perfectly she captures that confusion and frustration of early childhood when nothing seems to make sense and adults behave in such odd ways and rules always seem to have an exception. They're lovely to read. Can't wait to share them with my DC when they are old enough.

nooka Thu 10-Jul-14 06:42:56

To an English mouth I'd say graham crackers are very sweet. I miss digestives (I'm English in North America). Loved Ramona.

CheerfulYank Thu 10-Jul-14 08:02:27

I remember trying to explain on here what s'mores were and couldn't get past "well, you have two graham crackers..." grin

Glad that she is loved by others. I think DS and I will write her a letter. smile

AggressiveBunting Thu 10-Jul-14 08:34:00

Yes, don't worry. I got past the graham cracker curiosity now:-) I think I thought they were like cream crackers and thought no wonder she didn't consider them a good snack. I was right with her on that one.

Bigglesfliesundone Thu 10-Jul-14 08:37:37

She also wrote 'fifteen' which was my favourite ever book as a rather naive teenager. Funny, I was thinking about it the other day!

evertonmint Thu 10-Jul-14 08:43:17

Loved them so much that I wanted to name my DD Ramona! Going to start them soon with 6yo DS and can't wait to read them again.

DeWee Thu 10-Jul-14 09:31:43

Haven't seen them since I was a child. I didn't know they were still around.
My favourite was when Ramona is asked if she wants something (hair cut like big sister I think) and she replies "No, we have to inch and pinch to make ends meet" and of course her mum then feels that she can't say no.

Judy Blume's Tale of a fourth grade nothing" with Fudge (Farley Drexel?) wirtten from big brother (Peter?) point of view were similar, although they went down hill (imo) after the first book which was brilliant.
"Eat it or wear it" Ds would have chosen the wear it option too.

I also liked the "My best fiend" books, can't remember who they were by.

CheerfulYank Thu 10-Jul-14 09:55:44

They made a movie a few years back DeWee so I think that led to a bit of a Ramona resurgance.

duzida Wed 30-Jul-14 16:40:50

very happy to see that children and parents are still enjoying Ramona. Just reading them to 5 year old DS, who also enjoyed the British 'My Naughty Little Sister' books.

Any other ideas for good old or new chapter books like this to read aloud to a 5 year old? I loved US children's books from 60s/70s/80s but am drawing a blank for something as emotionally clever and complex yet understandable as Ramona.

DS's own reading skills are nowhere near good enough to read Ramona on his own yet, but he likes listening to a long story like this, not fussed if there aren't many pictures.

Not old enough for Judy Blume Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, but something along those lines...what else do your kids aged 4/5/6 who like Ramona like?

Lilymaid Wed 30-Jul-14 16:47:37

The only book of hers I have ever read was Fifteen which I read when I was about 12 or 13 - and really wanted to go to drugstores/ice cream parlours, go out dating etc!

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