The Penderwicks in Spring

Jeanne Birdsall. Knopf, $16.99 (352p) ISBN 978-0-375-87077-4
With the addition of baby sister Lydia, the Penderwicks’ blended family returns with all the big-family drama and joys that fans have come to expect. In this fourth installment, musically inclined fifth-grader Batty is delighted to learn that her school’s dull music teacher has been replaced by the more appealing Mrs. Grunfeld; better still, the new teacher thinks Batty has a “rare and beautiful” voice. Inspired, Batty earns money for singing lessons by walking two unusual neighborhood dogs, a job that makes her yearn for her own, recently deceased dog. After overhearing a family secret, she starts to believe that she was responsible for the death of her mother, who passed away when Batty was a baby. It takes a lot of detective work from her older sisters, parents, and neighbors to figure out why Batty is so blue, but in true Penderwick fashion, misunderstandings are soon righted. The warmth and compassion of the Penderwick family comes through in every page of this slice-of-life novel, healing emotional bruises and reassuring readers that most problems can be overcome. Ages 8–12. Agent: Barbara S. Kouts. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/12/2015
Release date: 03/24/2015
Genre: Children's
Library Binding - 352 pages - 978-0-375-97077-1
Compact Disc - 978-0-553-55215-7
Ebook - 1 pages - 978-0-307-97459-4
Paperback - 352 pages - 978-0-307-93098-9
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-4676-0024-8
Prebound-Glued - 352 pages - 978-0-606-38452-0
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Audio book sample courtesy of Penguin Random House Audio
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