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No Children, No Pets

by Marion Holland

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298673,918 (4.13)5

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Published in 1956, this is a flimsy paperback book with retro illustrations. The story is cute and cliched, but takes place in Florida, which I found marvelous. Holland nailed the quirky old people, the Florida weather, the gritty sand and the sound of wind through palms. This story is worth reading, if for nothing more then the vintage language and the funny characters. ( )
  empress8411 | Jan 21, 2014 |
This is one of the books i got when i was in 3rd grade from the Weekly Reader Children's Book Club and i can still remember how much i enjoyed it. my parents had just bought a small motel in Florida and here i had a book about a family who moves to an apartment house in Florida! I could see, hear and smell around me everything that was in the book--the sound of the waves, the smell of the salt air, the palms swaying in the breeze, the long lines of pelicans flying along the shore and the feel of walking barefoot in the hot sand [not to mention the ouch of the sandspurs!].
  TrysB | Jun 8, 2012 |
I lived in Florida the first time I read this during the early 1960s and could really relate to it. I want to read it again. ( )
  brickhorse | Sep 28, 2010 |
When I was in the fourth grade, back in 1957, I convinced my parents to enroll me in the Weekly Readers Book Club. The possibility of having books that belonged to me alone was just too wonderful. There were always books in the house -- my mother was a voracious reader -- but most of them belonged to the library. Buying a book was a rare treat. But even better, these came in the mail addressed to me. Ah heaven! During the year or two that I was a member, I remember the anticipation of opening the packages, not knowing what I was going to find -- I don't think I was ever disappointed with the results. I took the books to bed with me, and usually managed to finish them before I went to sleep -- long after the lights were supposed to be out. The deliciousness of surreptitious reading....

NO CHILDREN, NO PETS by Marion Holland (1956) was one of my favorites. A widowed mother inherits a run-down apartment house in coastal Florida and takes her three children, Jane, Don and Betsy, and the cat Victoria, to inspect the place. They are greeted by a somewhat hostile crew of elderly tenants and a sign on the door that proclaims "No Children, No Pets." But Jane, the eldest child, falls in love with the ocean and the town, and decides they must stay. She enlists her brother Don to help with caretaking chores, and they are aided by a rather strange, but capable, boy named Mike. Mysteries ensue and a hurricane threatens -- Where is the missing caretaker? Who stole Mrs. Pennypacker's ruby clip? Is the reclusive Miss Gibbs a kleptomaniac? ( this book was my introduction to this interesting vocabulary word).

The picture of 1950s Florida, pre-Disney, with small sleepy coastal towns where children go to the beach by themselves, and everyone calmly boards up windows and hunkers down as hurricane winds threaten, is priceless. ( )
1 vote janeajones | Jul 18, 2009 |
I enjoyed this very much when I read it to our children, but the true aficionado was their father, whose book this was when he was a child. A single mother with her children inherits an apartment building in Florida which is filled with elderly people who, at first, aren't too happy about the family and its cat descending on them. But the children find out that the old people are really quite interesting characters, and the old people learn that the kids aren't so bad either. ( )
  auntieknickers | Mar 10, 2008 |
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To the tenants of the real apartment house in Florida this story is affectionately dedicated.
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Jane was alone in the house when the registered air mail letter came.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Mother, Don and Jane, four-year-old Betsy, and Victoria the cat off to Florida to take possession of the apartment house they've just inherited.
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