I loved A Year Down Yonder and A Long Way From Chicago, so when I saw A Season of Gifts, which was also written by Richard Peck, I had to read it.
This is a companion book to the above books that he has written featuring Mrs. Dowdel! I love Mrs. Dowdel. She is hilarious!
A Season of Gifts
by Richard Peck
Dial Books for Young Readers
On the inside flap it states - This story takes place in 1958, and a new family has moved in next door to Mrs. Dowdel - a family in desperate need of her help (whether they realize it or not). There's twelve-year-old Bob, shy on courage in a town full of bullies; his Elvis-obsessed older sister, Phyllis, who just might be on the verge of spinning out of control; Bob's little sister, Ruth Ann, ready and waiting for a larger-than-life role model; and even Bob's two parents, the young minister and his wife, who are amazed to discover that the last house in town might also be the most vital.
I love Ruth Ann. She is a little girl who takes to Mrs. Dowdel and helps her with just about everything and even starts talking like her. "Hoo-boy" being one of their favorite sayings.
They have a green car, they call the Pickle, and Mrs. Dowdel has twelve-year-old Bob driving it in the last section of the book which takes place at Christmas time.
The book is divided up into three sections titled, The Last House in Town, The Fall of the Year and E'er the Winter Storms Begin. But I must admit, I was not as impressed with this book, as I was with the others, until I got to E'er the Winter Storms Begin. When I got to that section, I didn't want to put it down.
It wasn't quite as funny as I thought it would be, but it was a good read, especially the last part. If you like Mrs. Dowdel, you'll like this book.
For more Middle Grade Reads, check out Shannon Messinger's Blog!