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Two Are Better Than One by Carol Ryrie Brink
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Two Are Better Than One

by Carol Ryrie Brink

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Chrystal & Cordelia (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
811223,266 (3.88)3
  1. 00
    Louly by Carol Ryrie Brink (sandykaypax)
    sandykaypax: Sort of a prequel to Two Are Better Than One by Carol Ryrie Brink.
  2. 00
    R My Name is Rosie by Barbara Cohen (bookel)
    bookel: Both have a story within the story.
  3. 00
    By Lizzie by Mary Eccles (bookel)
  4. 00
    Summers Lease by Marilyn Sachs (bookel)
  5. 00
    The Bronze Pen by Zilpha Keatley Snyder (bookel)
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» See also 3 mentions

When a letter and package arrive for Mrs. Chrystal Banks (nee Reese) one Christmas season, containing a treasured memento from days past, the elderly lady is reminded of her childhood in Warsaw, Idaho, and the good times she had with her best friend and honorary twin (or "tween"), Cordelia Lark. Although outwardly very different - Cordy, one of a large and boisterous family, was a tall brunette; while Chrys, a petite blond, was an orphaned only child who lived with her aunt and grandmother - the two girls were as alike as two peas in a pod, when it came to their interests and activities. Still playing with dolls, despite being almost thirteen, the friends were more interested in the "romantical" adventure novel they were writing, featuring the magical pocket dolls Lester and Lynette, than in any actual romance with boys. Whether dressing up as rag dolls for the Sunday School party, rather than as elegant "Martha Washingtons" like the other girls, or taking the state board examinations in order to get into high school a year early, Chrys and Cordy live out their maxim that "two are better than one."

Only the second book I have read from Carol Ryrie Brink - the other being the Newbery Medal winner Caddie Woodlawn, which I recall enjoying in my own childhood - this charming coming-of-age story is enough to convince me that I have been missing out! I enjoyed everything about Two Are Better Than One, from the many humorous moments - Chrys and Cordy walking each other back and forth one night, because neither wants to pass the jailhouse alone! The contretemps at the Lark household, when the great romantical novel is discovered by Cordy's brothers and Mr. Crump! - to the sensitive depiction of two girls who, although in no rush to grow up, discover that it is happening regardless. I particularly liked the episode involving the girls' rather grumpy teacher, Miss Hickenlooper, in which they discover that she is a human being after all, one for whom they slowly develop an appreciation; as well as the one in which they learn that beautiful new hats are not the most important aspect of Easter. Although no mention is made of it in the text, it is clear from their eventual married names that Cordy and Chrys eventually marry the young men boarding in their homes (Mr. Crump and Mr. Banks). I liked the fact that this knowledge is available in the background, but not commented upon in the story itself, as it gives the book an added sense of depth - one gets the sense that the author had so much more she could have told, if she wanted to.

All in all, this was an outstanding little book, one that reminded me, with its tale of two inseparable girl friends, and their doings in turn-of-the-century small-town America, of the more famous Betsy-Tacy books. I wish someone would bring it back into print! ( )
1 vote AbigailAdams26 | Jul 19, 2013 |
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Carol Ryrie Brinkprimary authorall editionscalculated
Gold, EthelIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rocker, FerminIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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A Christmas package with two miniature dolls reminds an old lady of the year she and her best friend were thirteen and writing a "romantical" novel.
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