What is there to say, I am a 40-something professional man with kids who like to listen to light books while on the bus to work.
While on vacation and driving the length of California back up from San Diego I downloaded this book for my family to listen to as we drove the long slog of I5. What a great choice!!! My 5 year old daughter was engrossed by this story and did not speak a peep for 6 hours straight as we drove the last 400 miles from Northern Cali to Washington. My wife was also engrossed and for the first time on that vacation I was able to experience a bit of quiet, the whole family quietly listened to the antics of Ramona and enjoyed her little story.
About the story itself...I never read these books as a child so was unfamiliar with them when I started. Basically this series follows the growth of a precocious little girl, named Ramona, and all her little innocent escapades as she grows up. The first book starts with Ramona age 4 and each subsequent book she is a year older. (well.. at least so far, we have only gotten through 4 books) Nothing huge happens here, no monsters need defeating, no saving the world, just little Ramona trying to learn how to grow up and be a good person. Her trials are things like not being sure her kindergarten teacher likes her, or dealing with the fallout of a bad tantrum. They are small things, but they are told beautifully and I actually think my 5 (soon to be 6) year old daughter enjoyed them all the more because she could so well relate to the feelings (and trials) Ramona was having and experiencing. As adults, my wife and I found the stories endearing and funny as the exploits of Ramona are very familiar to anybody who has had (or has) young children. Ms. Channing’s performance is wonderful, and she really brings to life all the characters. I highly recommend this series for anybody with young children. One thing though, Ms. Cleary sometimes gives away (or almost) the secrets of things like Santa Claus/tooth fairy/etc... Early in this series Ramona loses a tooth and Ms. Cleary alludes to (but does not actually explicitly reveal) Daddy being the actual tooth fairy, that part takes about 2 min....you can easily see it coming and you may want to skip ahead if you want to make sure that you can preserve that little fiction.
This is a wonderful book. I acquired it for one of the long drives this vacation...as we crossed Montana. My 7 y'old AND my 3 y'old daughter AND my wife (who generally dislikes audio books) were all engrossed and quiet for the entire length of this book. It is well read and wonderfully written.
First a little about the story, this is a book about a "sickly" child, Benji, who (for a reason I won't divulge here) gets a VERY smart dog (Elvis), and how by getting this dog he changes his life for the better. Benji is a fairly typical ten year old boy, albeit sickly, living a typically life. His travails include occasionally passing out and dodging bullies. His mother is a bit hysterical (and thus hilarious) but so well conceived and written that she is also sympathetic, my wife even said she could (kind of) relate to her. Likewise, Benji and his friends are very relatable resulting in a very sweet and fun (and funny) story of making a place for yourself in the world. We all laughed (my 7 y'old most of all) out loud and even my 3 y'old went on how "that's funny".
I highly recommend this book for listening with your kids.
My daughter LOVED this series and this book in particular. This is a great light listen, and extremely appropriate for children under 10, especially girls. I thought this book was extremely well written and the story was very enjoyable. My daughter would give it 5 stars across the board, I gave it 4 because I like to save the 5 stars for books that I (that is ME) can't put down. If I could I would probably give this book 4.5 stars...the only thing that keeps this from 5 stars is because it is very much so a children's book and thus was just a bit predictable for an adult. That said, the main characters of this book are strong, relatable female characters that I liked my daughter to listen to. I felt that they showed her how young girls could be strong and demonstrated how sisters should look out for each other. I highly recommend this novel for people with young girls and who want to listen to something together. I also recommend it to anybody with children (of any sort), or for adults who enjoy books with the light atmosphere of "young adult/children" stories like atmosphere of the early books of Harry Potter or the Septimus Heap books. Now that I have said that I should clarify that this book only compares to HP and SP in the style/tone of the story...the plot and everything else are NOTHING like HP and SP. I would describe the The Sisters Grimm as a "fairy tale/fantasy realism/mystery/detective children???s novel. NOT "swords and magic fantasy". But the at
Fun! . The kids in the car want this one on all the time .
I have put other audiobooks on but this is their favorite.
Upon first listen I thought I had wasted my money but after 2 months
repeatedly playing this one for the kindygarten and school run they still want to listen to it. even other school friends are singing along .
I will be looking for another one of these .