93-94. Grandma's Attic Series by Arleta Richardson Book 1 & 2

Grandma's Attic Series by Arleta Richardson

Publisher: David C Cook

Publication Date: originally published in the seventies. These editions are re-published April, 2011 with new illustrations by Patrice Barton.

Acquired: Received review copies from the books' publicist.

Reason for Reading: I've read book three of this series and have always wanted to read all the books but just never got around to it; so when I was offered an opportunity to review the first two books I jumped!

Ages: 7+

93. Book One: In Grandma's Attic, 1974, 2011, 144 pgs. (US) - (Canada) Wonderful, wholesome tales of farm life in Michigan in approximately the 1870s. Arleta Richardson was actually brought up by her grandmother, but in the books she comes for extended visits and finds many objects in Grandma's attic and just around the house that provoke Grandma into telling Arleta the story surrounding the object from her own childhood. Or Arleta and Grandma are doing something together and by asking a question or simple conversation will bring about another tale of Grandma's childhood. The stories in this book centre around when Grandma was between about four and nine years of age. They tell of a wonderful, harder yet simpler life, when items such as a water pump made life so much easier. These are tales of a little girl or her older brothers getting into mischief, being downright naughty or simply becoming caught up in embarrassing moments. Some of the stories have what could be called a lesson to teach (or a moral) but they are gentle and not the emphasis of every story. The books in this series are classified as Christian fiction, and while the family believes in God, mentions their beliefs, and acts accordingly this book is no more Christian than any other mainstream story that features a Christian family, such as the Ingalls family. Rather than telling one cohesive story the book is more of a collection of vignettes with each chapter telling a new reminiscence from Grandma's childhood. There are small details that recur from time to time in later chapters that hold the book together well. Lots of fun and humour which I thoroughly enjoyed. Rating 5/5

94. Book Two: More Stories From Grandma's Attic. 1979, 2011. 144 pgs. Another wonderful wholesome book of stories about Grandma's memories of when she was a little girl on the farm back in the late 1800s in Michigan. Her age is not mentioned often this time around but six and nine years old are mentioned, with the majority of the stories taking place with her best friend Sarah Jane at around the age of nine. This makes the time frame compatible with book one. The short prelude stories of Grandma and Arleta have become a bit more involved and Arleta herself has become a character. The stories are just as fun as in book one, though all are not just fun, some have a more serious side as well. I'd say the stories this time around focus more on learning a lesson (though by no means are they didactic) and this book is definitely more from a Christian world view than the first. This time around Grandma and Arleta are staying at Grandma's old farm house for several months, this is where Uncle Roy lives now, and Arleta will be going to school here for a time. A joy to read by little girls, to little girls and for the little girl in you. Will be enjoyed by those who like the Little House or Betsy-Tacy books but with a more prominent Christian element. 5/5


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