Saturday, September 6, 2014
Ivy and Bean by Annie Barrows
In the sequel, Ivy is convinced there is a ghost in the girl's bathroom at school. Her vivid description of the phenomenon sparks the imagination of the other students, and soon no one is willing to use the facilities. Can Ivy and Bean find a way to exorcise the unhappy ghost?
The fun thing about Ivy and Bean is that Barrows has a good feel for the way that 7-year-olds think. The way the girls come up with plans and believe their imaginations is spot on for the target age group. The thing I didn't like about Ivy and Bean is that they are not always very nice. Bean, especially, is pretty devoid of moral scruples and does anything she thinks she has to regardless of whether it is right or wrong. Bean can be pretty mean to her older sister, and thinks nothing of disobeying or manipulating her parents when it is to her advantage. This is also age authentic, but it makes it so I didn't like Ivy and Bean as well as I like Clementine. Clementine gets into a lot of trouble, but it is out of lack of judgement instead of willful disobedience. The whole time she is at least trying to do what is right and kind. Ivy and Bean don't even think about being kind. Some children might enjoy reading about girls with a bit of naughtiness but I liked Clementine better. (112p. and 125p.)