Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Henry and Beezus

Henry and Beezus. Beverly Cleary. 1952/2002. HarperCollins. 192 pages.

Henry Huggins stood by the front window of his square white house on Klickitat Street and wondered why Sunday afternoon seemed so much longer than any other part of the week. 

I enjoyed Henry Huggins. But I think I enjoyed Henry and Beezus even more! In this second book, Henry Huggins has his mind on one thing and one thing only. He NEEDS a bicycle. He WANTS a bicycle. Since his parents can't afford to buy him one, he's determined to work hard doing whatever he can to earn and save his own money for it. Henry Huggins is nothing if not responsible--most of the time!

His obsession with bicycles is making him more than a little jealous of Scooter, a boy in the neighborhood that has a new bicycle of his own--and a paper route. He also spend a little more time with Beezus (and subsequently with Ramona) in this second book. I can see why Ramona demanded some books of her own! And, then, of course, there's Ribsy!

Will Henry get his bicycle? You'll have to read for yourself and see! 

From "Henry Gets Rich"
"Come on, Ramona," said Beezus, taking an old panda bear out of the wagon. "We're going with Henry."
"No," said Ramona.
Henry was growing anxious. What if Scooter decided to cut through the vacant lot? "Jeepers, Beezus, we've just got to hurry. It's awfully important. If we don't get where we're going, we might be too late."
"Ramona," coaxed Beezus, "can't you play that game some other time?"
"What game?" asked Henry. He couldn't see that Ramona was playing any game.
"She's playing she's waiting for a bus," explained Beezus.
Henry groaned. It was the dumbest game he had ever heard of. "Doesn't she know it isn't any fun just to sit on a box?" he asked, looking nervously up and down the street. If only he could be sure no one else had discovered his gum!
"Sh-h," whispered Beezus. "She thinks it's fun and I don't want her to find out it isn't. It keeps her quiet." Then she said to her little sister, "If you get in the wagon, Henry and I'll pull you and you can pretend you're riding on the bus." (44-46)

From "Henry Parks His Dog"

"Of course, you may go, Beezus," said Mrs. Huggins. "Henry will be glad to take you."
"Isn't it pretty far for Ramona to walk?" asked Henry. "It's about ten blocks. Long blocks, too."
"Oh, no. Ramona never gets tired," said Beezus. "Daddy says he wishes sometimes she would, but she never does." (107)

© 2011 Becky Laney of Young Readers

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