Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Reading Journal #18 - Freckles by Gene Stratton Porter, Winter Cottage by Carol Ryrie Brink, & More

Freckles (Library of Indiana Classics) by Gene Stratton-Porter

My thoughts:
I decided at the last minute to read A Girl of the Limberlost for the Reading to Know Bookclub hosted by Carrie. I got into the first ninety pages and decided that I needed to reaquaint myself with Freckles which I had listened to a few year back.

Freckles is an orphan who has to make his own way in the world. He begs for the job of protecting the timber in the Limberlost Forest. Even though he is dreadfully scared at first, he begins to learn the way of the creatures of the forest. He also begins to self-educate himself with all the beautiful animals that he meets, especially the "chicken bird." When the Bird Woman comes to the forest to take pictures he meets the beautiful Angel whom he immediately falls in love with. For the next few years he gains friends and eventually finds out who he really is and ultimately realizes he is worthy of Angel.

What I interested me most in this story was the character of Freckles. Here is a young man who has nothing but determination, honesty, and loyalty. He also learns to love and respect nature. I really enjoyed being re-acquainted with Freckles and the Limberlost and it helped me with finished The Girl of the Limberlost.

SCROLL Pictures, Images and Photos

Winter Cottage by Carol Ryrie Brink

My thoughts:
I can't believe that I almost forgot to record reading this book!  I had went searching for other books written by Carol Ryrie Brink when I had read a recommendation for her other stories besides Caddie Woodlawn. I had read Family Grandstand and thought it was an okay read, though I do believe children would enjoy it. My next pick was Winter Cottage and I have to admit I was not disappointed!
During the beginning of the Great Depression, Minty Sparkes, along with her sister and poetry quoting father end up stranded in northern Wisconsin. They find an empty summer cottage which they decide to "rent", though they don't have any money. This leads them on an adventure which includes a run-away boy, an Indian village, and eventually two strangers who arrive on the doorstep in a blizzard. Things begin to take a fun and exciting when the identity of the strangers is revealed.

I can't begin to say how much I enjoyed this story, maybe even a little more than Caddie Woodlawn (don't quote me on this since it has been a few years since I read Caddie Woodlawn). This story was exciting, suspenseful, and just plain fun. When I finished reading it I immediately handed it to Destini (12) and said she HAD to read it. My sweet daughter obeyed her mother and agreed that it was a great read. Highly recommended!

SCROLL Pictures, Images and Photos

Five Miles South of Peculiar by Angela Hunt

My thoughts:
Darlene and Magnolia Caldwell are living peaceably at their estate, Sycamores. A surprise 50th birthday party is held for Darlene and the biggest surprise is her twin sister, Carlene, arrives back in Peculiar for a visit. Carlene, who is hiding her own painful secret, upsets Darlene's world, while Magnolia is thrilled to have her. As the three sister work through their own pains they discover who they are meant to be.

I really wanted to like this story. I love reading novels set in the south, but I found this was a tad bit annoying, and didn't have much of the southern flavor that I have found in other books. Also, the author waited until the last 1/8 of the book for everything to come together and finally get a little exciting and by then I just wanted to get it finished. I've read worse, but I've also read better.


  1. I did the same thing with Girl of the Limberlost and Freckles -- I had read them both as a child and wanted to reacquaint myself with Freckles before reading the second book. I was very glad to revisit it but I don't think it is one I plan to reread in the future.

  2. *sigh* I'm not sure I'm going to be able to get to Girl of the Limberlost with the Reading to Know crowd.

    I am glad to see a Carol Ryrie Brink book that I didn't even know about. I'll have to add that to the TBR list.



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