Jeanne Birdsall’s bestselling middle-grade book series, The Penderwicks has warmed the hearts of children and even adults across the world. The first book was published in 2005 and the last of four sequels came out in 2018. Here are five reasons you should read this phenomenal series.
The Stories Are Old Fashioned
The Penderwick books are old fashioned in the best way possible. The four sisters, Rosalind, Skye, Jane and Batty actually spend time outdoors and explore the environment around them. The oldest sister Rosalind is only able to write letters to her best friend Anna while on vacation in the first book, since phones didn’t exist at the time. Imagine if Birdsall had decided to set the novel in 2004 when she was writing it. Most teenagers had cell phones then, so Rosalind would have spent the entire vacation texting Anna.
The Characters Are Relatable and Great Role Models too
A main reason the Penderwick novels are so successful is the characters. They are all great people but, at the same time, have many flaws. Rosalind is overly sensitive, and I’m sure many teens who deal with the same issue found comfort while reading parts of the novel through her perspective. The same can be said for Skye’s temper issues. But, even with these mistakes and flaws, we still adore the girls because of the way they support each other and their friend Jeffery. They go out of their way to save a boy they barley know from a bad situation, proving themselves fantastic role models for young children.
The Writing Quality is Great
Jeanne Birdsall is a fantastic writer. The metaphors and similes she uses in the novel don’t just keep you engaged; they also implant themselves in your brain. Studies show that reading is the best way to gain vocabulary and become a better writer, as long as the writing you’re reading is good. And Jeanne Birdsall is one of the best.
They Promote Male/Female Friendship
Growing up, a lot of girls are taught that boys have cooties and that it’s strange for them to have male friends. The friendship that Skye and the rest of her sisters have with Jeffery proves that theory wrong. They always have each other’s backs no matter what!
The Books Are A Series
If you feel like you haven’t gotten enough of Rosalind, Skye, Jane, and Batty after reading the first book, never fear. You can solve that problem by reading the four sequels: The Penderwicks on Gardam Street, The Penderwicks At Mouette, The Penderwicks in Spring, and The Penderwicks at Last.