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Family Grandstand by Carol Ryrie Brink

Family Grandstand (1952)

by Carol Ryrie Brink

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Ridgeway Family (1)

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Showing 5 of 5
Why are these so hard to find, when stories like the [b:The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy|266904|The Penderwicks A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy|Jeanne Birdsall|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1320508900s/266904.jpg|2564478] are so popular? This is charming, and timeless, and gosh I wish the set would be re-issued so I could read the others, too. I definitely recommend this to fans of the Penderwicks - and vice-versa. And I know that as much as I love it now, I would have loved it even more as a child. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
Fun and old fashioned. Great family. Fun adventures. Very quiet story, I'm happy that all turns out well. ( )
  njcur | Jun 3, 2014 |
The first of two chidren's novels chronicling the adventures of the Ridgeway family - the second, Family Sabbatical, has been enthusiastically recommended to me by a number of friends, on more than one occasion - Family Grandstand is a charming tale, one with an appealing cast of characters and a fairly gentle but engaging set of happenings. Set in the 1950s (possibly the late 1940s?), it follows the story of the three Ridgeway children - twelve-year-old Susan, who was sensible and firm, but never bossy; middle child and boy-of-the-family George, who was going on ten, and loved animals of any and every variety; and six-year-old Dumpling (real name: Irene), whose interesting pronouncements and bespectacled appearance had her family convinced that she was a uniquely thoughtful and intelligent baby - who live on College Avenue, in a lovely old-fashioned house with a tower. Their father, who is a professor at Midwest University, and their mother, a mystery writer, complete the family; while serious student Dorothy Sturm, earning her way by helping out in the Ridgeway home, football star Tommy Tucker (AKA Tommy Tokarynski), and the local neighborhood children round out the cast of characters.

Published in 1952, this is a sweet, rather old-fashioned family story, with a little bit of football and college interest thrown in. I enjoyed pretty much everything about it, from the many incidents involving the children's animals - the adoption of Torible Terence, the happy freeing of the turtles, the unhappy freeing of Dickie the canary - to the sub-plot involving Dorothy and Tommy. The latter is resolved fairly predictably - I knew Dorothy would give in and tutor Tommy, helping him to catch up in chemistry - but I was interested to see it play out all the same. As someone who finds the current state of athletics at many universities - the way it has been turned into a big business, and allowed to supersede the true purpose of higher education (ie: academics) - very disturbing, I was pleased that it was simply understood that, without prospering in his studies, Tommy would not be allowed to play. I have difficulty imagining that being insisted upon today, at some of our schools.

In any case, this was just an immensely engaging read, and although I wouldn't say that anything particularly momentous occurred in the course of the story, I was completely involved with the characters. I can't wait to see what the Ridgeways make of France, in Family Sabbatical! ( )
1 vote AbigailAdams26 | Apr 26, 2013 |
Sweet, cute and wholesome. I was diverted but not enchanted. Contrary to what Wendy promised me, there are no actual lizards in this book. Ultimately, I neither connected with nor cared about anyone in the family. ( )
  satyridae | Apr 5, 2013 |
I didn't like this as much as I did Family Sabbatical so it was probably best I read them in the order I read them in. This was a cute story though and it is interesting to see how times have changed. Susan's comment about babysitting for the Terrible Torrences despite them being five and six and old enough to take care of themselves made me chuckle a little. ( )
  matamgirl | Apr 3, 2013 |
Showing 5 of 5
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Carol Ryrie Brinkprimary authorall editionscalculated
Porter, Jean MacDonaldIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Book description
An unusual family enjoys an unusual football season. The Ridgeway family of three -- George, Susan, and Dumpling -- live on College Avenue and have the football stadium in their laps.
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From Newbery Medal winner Carol Ryrie Brink comes a story about one unforgettable family. Susan, George, and Dumpling have a special life in Midwest City, where they live with their college-professor dad and mystery-writer mom. Not only can they watch the university's football games from the tower of their house on College Avenue, but now Tommy Tokarynski, who mows their lawn, is famous. He's Midwest University's star quarterback. There's only one problem: Tommy's grades are dreadful, and he might get kicked off the team before the homecoming game. With a little ingenuity, Susan, George, and Dumpling team up for a season of fun as they set out to save their beloved quarterback, outsmart their naughty neighbors, rescue animals, and start a new business that just might help out the whole family. It's never a dull moment when the Ridgeway kids are involved! The adventures of the Ridgeway family in Family Grandstand and its sequel, Family Sabbatical, were inspired by Carol Ryrie Brink's own family and their life together in Saint Paul, Minnesota.… (more)

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