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Podcast Podcast

Episode 4 — Summer Adventures


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Chatting About Books: Recommendations for Young Readers

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Grades K – 5
Podcast Series Chatting About Books: Recommendations for Young Readers
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Duration 17:51
Original Air Date Published June 24, 2008

Book Chat

Cookies and Milk

Expert Chat


Book Chat

  • The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy by Jeanne Birdsall (Yearling, 2007)

    This tale is a perfect summer read for families. Driven by fate, or perhaps by the greedy landlord that sold their usual summer house, the Penderwick family ends up staying in a cottage behind the Arundel estate. The four sisters (Rosalind, Skye, Jane, and Batty) are brimming with life. This book relives their adventures with their newfound friend, Jeffrey Tifton. Jeffrey just happens to be the son of Arundal's owner, Mrs. Tifton, who thinks that the Penderwicks are not at all suitable playmates for her son. With spirit and good intentions, the Penderwicks cause quite a stir in this small town and manage to turn life at Arundal upside down for three weeks one summer!
    Best for grades 36, ages 812
    Winner of the National Book Award
    Jeanne Birdsall's website

  • A Couple of Boys Have the Best Week Ever by Marla Frazee (Harcourt, 2008)

    Two boys, James and Eamon, spend a week with Eamon's grandparents and have the best week ever! They go to nature camp (which should be named Camp Sweat-Alot), eat lots of banana waffles (yum!), and play video games (quiet meditation). James and Eamon have so much fun together they practically become one person; in fact, Grandpa Bill starts calling them "Jamon." Kids will enjoy this hilarious picture book that shares the fun week of two crazy boys!
    Best for grades K2, ages 48
    2009 Caldecott Honor Book

    2008 Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Award for Picture Book

    Marla Frazee's website

Cookies and Milk

Sisters Kylie and Cameron (ages eight and nine, respectively) chat with Emily about the Penderwick sisters and those two crazy boys who could be brothers (but aren't). Kylie recounts how much she enjoyed the hilarious escapades of James and Eamon and the author's clever juxtaposition of words and pictures in A Couple of Boys Have the Best Week Ever. Cameron gives many insights into the thoughts and feelings of the Penderwick sisters. In Cameron's words, The Penderwicks is "a perfect book!"

Expert Chat

Marla Frazee, the talented author/illustrator of A Couple of Boys Have the Best Week Ever and many other hilarious children's books, takes time to chat with Emily over the phone. She discusses the origin of A Couple of Boys and her secret to making the characters seem so real.