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Winter cottage by Carol Ryrie Brink
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Winter cottage

by Carol Ryrie Brink

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I read this one aloud to my kids. We all really enjoyed it (and I enjoyed doing voices for each character, especially Eggs), but I had trouble getting past just how nice everyone is and how well everything works out. Things work out a little too perfectly and the characters forgive just a little too easily to be realistic, I think. Or maybe I'm just in a crappy mood. Luckily, based on the lessons from this book, I know it's nothing a batch of pancakes won't fix. ( )
  ImperfectCJ | Oct 31, 2016 |
Both charming and exciting. No cliches - for example the father is a dreamy poet and unsuccessful at regular work, but he does have his dignities and he is not lazy nor a drunk. I liked the historical setting - for example I learned that the reason sweepstakes now all say 'no purchase necessary' is because so many of the contests back then were exploitative.

And the writing is just perfect. Most of it is dialog, but little sprinkles of descriptive passages sometimes reveal gems like, [T]his car sounded like a hardware shop on holiday."

One warning to the culturally sensitive. There's a chapter where the children visit an Indian Reservation. We don't learn which nation is living there. There's a convent (?) or at least a school taught by nuns, and the sisters express sadness that there classes are getting smaller each year because "every year the number of Indians on the reservation grows smaller." Are they moving to the city? Or back to the wilderness to live among the 'heathen Indians?' Or are they dying off? Are the children boarding at the school willing to be there? Brink seemed sensitive and respectful, but she was writing about a troubled time and gave us only a provocative glimpse of reservation life." ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
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