Beezus and Ramona by Beverly Cleary

51ddipgw21lA couple of years ago, Audible had a great sale. I was able to purchase most of Beverly Cleary’s most popular books for about $4 apiece. I have been reading the Ramona books to my seven-year-old twins, and now that the girls are out of school, we have been listening to some of the books that we haven’t read.

The girls wanted to start with Beezus and Ramona, which takes place before Ramona the Pest. They were very interested to see what Ramona was like before she started Kindergarten. I’d like to point out that Stockard Channing serves as narrator for all of the Ramona books, so that’s kind of neat in a whimsical sort of way.

Beezus and Ramona differs from the other Ramona books because Ramona’s older sister Beezus is the protagonist. Ramona is certainly the one who serves as catalyst, but the focus is on how Ramona’s actions affect Beezus. Read more

Buckingham Babylon by Peter Fearon

71qgt050qzlI found Buckingham Babylon by Peter Fearon at my town library. I was looking for some British history books, and this book was in the same section. I love books/movies about the Royal Family, so I was pleased to have discovered it.

Buckingham Babylon is subtitled “The Rise and Fall of the House of Windsor”, and it was published in 1993. There are some major Royal Family life events that have happened since the early 1990s, so in some respects, this book is woefully out of date. Read more

Contrary Woodrow by Sue Felt

There are plenty of picture books about Valentine’s Day; not as many as other holidays like Halloween and Christmas, but a fair amount. My favorite Valentine’s Day story has to be Contrary Woodrow.


I found Contrary Woodrow at the public library. We have a small section of donated books available for sale, and this was where I found Contrary Woodrow. This picture book was written by Sue Felt and was published in 1958.

Contrary Woodrow is the story of a boy named Woodrow Woodington. His family has declared that he is contrary, and the first part of the book is dedicated to establishing his contrariness. Woodrow is the third of five children. Maybe this is why he has such an alliterative name. His older siblings are named John and Sally, so maybe his parents wanted to get a little creative. Woodrow’s younger siblings are named Elizabeth and Pete, so clearly, his parents went back to more traditional choices for baby names. Maybe Woodrow is so contrary because he’s saddled with such a name. Read more