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Month in review

Reviews
Amulet 8: Supernova by Kazu Kibuishi
Baddawi by Leila Abdelrazaq
The Benefits of Being an Octopus by Ann Braden
Bluecrowne by Kate Milford
Bluff and Bran and the Snowdrift by Meg Rutherford
Cloudette by Tom Lichtenheld
The Doughnut Fix by Jessie Janowitz
Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire
Echo's Sister by Paul Mosier
Elementary, She Read by Vicki Delany
Foe by Iain Reid
Hold The Cream Cheese, Kill The Lox by Sharon Kahn
Holiday Grind by Cleo Coyle
How to Say Goodbye in Robot by Natalie Standiford
Lavender Lies by Susan Wittig Albert
The Legend of Korra: Turf Wars Part Two by Michael Dante DiMartino and Irene Koh
Louisiana's Way Home by Kate DiCamillo
Lowriders Blast from the Past by Cathy Camper and Raul III
The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl by Stacy McAnulty
No Fixed Address by Susin Nielsen
Once Upon a Spine by Kate Carlisle
The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall
Personal Demons by Nimue Brown
The Reader by Traci Chee
Secret Coders 4: Robots & Repeats by Gene Luen Yang
Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Sodom Road Exit by Amber Dawn
The Shadow Cipher by Laura Ruby
24 Hours in Nowhere by Dusti Bowling

Miscellaneous
Cybils Update (November 06)
Cybils Update (November 13)
Cybils Update (November 20)
Cybils Update (November 27)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 05)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 12)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 19)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 26)
October 2018 Sources
October 2018 Summary

Road Essays
FFCC99: FF99CC and FF9999: orphans in the wildlands by maze and labyrinth
FF9933: orphan wildlands blue highway
From 00CC33 to 33CCCC: a road narrative analysis of Haunting of Hill House, book and Netflix television series
A Map to the Road Narrative Spectrum
Road Narrative Update for October 2018
The three faces of Eleanor

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Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish



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The Penderwicks: 11/30/18

The Penderwicks

The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbit, and Very Interesting Boy by Jeanne Birdsall is the start of the Penderwicks series. I read The Penderwicks in Spring, the fourth book, for the Cybils a couple years back. Feeling that I was missing some things for a lack of context, I've decided to go back and read the series in order.

The series opens with the Penderwicks heading to a summer home they've rented called Arundel. There's the Latin language loving dad and his daughters: Rosalind (age 12), Skye (age 11), Jane (age 10), and Batty (age 4). Their mother died of cancer shortly after giving birth to Batty.

The home they are renting is owned by Mrs. Tifton who has a son about the age of the oldest girls. He's rather lonely at the house. Mrs. Tifton is very formal and has a boyfriend who is just as stuffy. The Penderwick girls are just the distraction he needs.

While there is a plot about the girls' friendship with Jeffrey, the book is pretty episodic. These are small adventures taken over the course of a summer holiday away from home.

In terms of the road narrative project, the first Penderwicks novel comes in low on the spectrum at a 33CC33 (family, uhoria, blue highway). The family is the Penderwicks. The blue highway takes them to their summer home. These two pieces are obvious and part of a large number of family road trip stories.

The uhoria is the timelessness of the novel. Birdsall includes some modern things like minivans but avoids the trappings of present. The novel seems to straddle the present and the 1940s or even earlier in the last century.

My thesis is that lower down on the spectrum a story falls, the safer the tale is. While uhoria higher up can mean time travel and ghosts, in this instance it just means a timelessness. It's a narrative that isn't dependent on particular technology or world events.

The second book is The Penderwicks on Gardam Street (2008)

Four stars

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