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Here Lies the Librarian Paperback – September 6, 2007


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Here Lies the Librarian + The Teacher's Funeral + A Season of Gifts
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 and up
  • Grade Level: 5 and up
  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin; Reprint edition (September 6, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0142409081
  • ISBN-13: 978-0545046619
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5.1 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #561,899 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 6-9-Another gem from Peck, with his signature combination of quirky characters, poignancy, and outrageous farce. Parentless Peewee, 14, and Jake, the big brother she idolizes, live in rural Indiana in 1914. They run a small garage, but face nasty sabotaging from the rival Kirbys. The novel opens with a hilariously macabre twister that tears up Buelahland Cemetery, turning up coffins, and strews Mrs. B. D. Klinefelder's laundry, including her massive step-ins, around the county. The tornado doesn't dare to touch the stern former librarian's grave. The board of trustees closed the library after her death, but that situation is about to change. Irene Ridpath, a library science student from Butler University, arrives with her three equally pretty and wealthy sorority sisters, all of whom drive fabulous cars, sparking Jake's interest (not just in their cars). After many pranks and hijinks, Peewee ends up being the only finisher in a rough-and-ready auto race, an event recounted in the closing chapter when she is an elderly, although still spunky, old lady. A master of capturing voice, Peck aptly conveys the nuances of rural life in the early years of the last century while weaving in early feminism, the history of the automobile, and the message to be oneself. Kids will love the fast-paced action and librarians will guffaw over all the library puns.-Connie Tyrrell Burns, Mahoney Middle School, South Portland, ME
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Gr. 5-8. Stubborn, fearless, and loyal, 14-year-old Peewee (Eleanor) McGrath, who dresses like a boy, lives with her brother, Jake, in Indiana, "way out in the weeds." Together, they run a struggling garage, where Jake is building a racecar. It's 1914, and the electric self-starter has made automobiles more accessible to women. One day, four female drivers, library students all, arrive in a Stoddard-Dayton in need of repair; later, they return to reopen the town library. With these young women as role models, Peewee comes to realize that being female and being independent aren't mutually exclusive. Peck's one-liners, colorful physical comedy, and country dialect, prominent in most of his recent novels, are great as usual. And his characters, if not fully developed, are wonderfully quirky. Yet even with some exciting scenes of old-time dirt-track racing, the pace lags, and the story is choppy. Young fans of Danica Patrick, today's "Queen of the Road," may want to read this, but it will probably be librarians who'll have the most fun. Peck recounts an incident in an endnote in which one of the characters appears at the Indianapolis 500 with Janet Guthrie; unfortunately, there's not enough explanation to know whether or not it's all true. Stephanie Zvirin
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Richard Peck has written over twenty novels, and in the process has become one of America's most highly respected writers for young adults. A versatile writer, he is beloved by middle graders as well as young adults for his mysteries and coming-of-age novels. He now lives in New York City. In addition to writing, he spends a great deal of time traveling around the country attending speaking engagements at conferences, schools and libraries...Mr. Peck has won a number of major awards for the body of his work, including the Margaret A. Edwards Award from School Library Journal, the National Council of Teachers of English/ALAN Award, and the 1991 Medallion from the University of Southern Mississippi. Virtually every publication and association in the field of children s literature has recommended his books, including Mystery Writers of America which twice gave him their Edgar Allan Poe Award. Dial Books for Young Readers is honored to welcome Richard Peck to its list with Lost in Cyberspace and its sequel The Great Interactive Dream Machine...

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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You don't care too much and you don't get too many details.
LexiJane
Kids and librarians should enjoy Peck's latest addition to his string of books that are fun to read.
Norman D. Stevens
A wonderful story with a surprise beginning and a heartwarming end.
Holly Bebernitz

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on September 3, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Do you ever get the impression that an author is trying just a little too hard to get the attention of their librarian readers? I don't think this happens much in the world of adult literature, but when it comes to kiddie lit, writers sometimes verge on the shameless. Now I was willing to look past Kimberly Willis Holt's paean to the glory of librarians everywhere in "Part of Me", and the non-fiction true tale of librarian heroism, "Dear Miss Breed" by Joanne Oppenheim could certainly slip by on my watch. But recently I've been doubling back and rereading some of the children's books that came out in early 2006. Of those books, one that I missed early on in the game was Richard Peck's, "Here Lies the Librarian", courtesy of Dial Books. Mr. Peck has written a wham-bam, rock `em, sock `em tale of hard core drag racing librarianship. Though still better (as anyone who reads his books regularly will tell you) than 92% of the schlock printed yearly, Peck's latest venture carries with it the faintest odor of familiarity. Basically, if you perused and enjoyed his previous book, "The Teacher's Funeral", then there's probably little reason to go on to this title as well unless you like to regularly douse yourself in Peck's pleasant wordplay.

For quite a while now it's just been Peewee and Jake, Jake and Peewee. The two siblings have been inseparable since the death of their parents and together they've managed to cobble a living for themselves out of a small automobile body shop. The year is 1914 and in a small town in Indiana Peewee and Jake are anxious for the new paved road to pass their miniscule business venture. While they wait, Jake has been working like a madman to create his very own automobile so as to enter it in one of the county's drag races.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Norman D. Stevens on June 7, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Richard Peck has again done his usual fine job of depicting what life was like for children in another era. The story takes a variety of twists and turns that keep even adult readers amused and entertained. As a librarian who is interested in how librarians have been, and are, portrayed in children's literature, I found this a worthy addition to the genre. At the time in the early 20th century that Here Lies the Librarian is set, librarianship had become a female profession but was showing signs of undergoing dramatic changes. Peck's former librarian Electra Deitz, who has died shortly before the story opens, was definitely of the old-fashion strict and forbidding kind. His new young female library school graduates are definitely of a different persuasion not only in terms of making the public library accessible and welcoming to users of all ages but also in their every day life. Kids and librarians should enjoy Peck's latest addition to his string of books that are fun to read.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By LexiJane on August 2, 2008
Format: Paperback
As a lover of historical fiction I automatically picked this book up, but the book does not contain much information on the time period, it mostly provides information on cars! (Perhaps Richard Peck should be a mechanic?) "Here Lies The Librarian" is an exceptional book. The author gives great descriptions and writes outstanding dialouge, yet it seems like your not quite there. It's like reading the newspaper and you hear about a robbery or a car crash. You don't care too much and you don't get too many details. There are some authors that can write about one second for several pages, yet this author treats the climax like any other part of the book. I will give it some praise in saying the begginning is fun and entertaining and the characterization is okay; although it would be nicer if the author gave better descriptions of the character's feelings, and a bit less on looks. I hate giving bad reviews, so I will say for anyone who is interested in cars; especially the first models, this is an informative story. Overrall it just seems like the author wasn't trying hard enough. I will still reccomend this novel for car lovers, and people who enjoy reading the newspaper or watching the news.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By S. Feicht on September 17, 2006
Format: Hardcover
It's 1914 in Hendricks County, Indiana, and Jake and PeeWee McGrath run a garage for those newfangled automobiles. PeeWee, aka Eleanor, doesn't plan to go to high school. She will stay with her older brother and help run the garage, only her brother is a better mechanic. Then four sorority sisters from Butler University in Indianapolis arrive and plan to reopen the town library. Excitement abounds with a rival garage attempting to destroy the McGrath's business and an automobile race that makes NASCAR look like a Sunday drive. If you enjoyed Peck's The Teacher's Funeral, you will love this one. The relationship between Jake and Eleanor is strong and loving. This is a nostalgic and humorous look at the early 20th century.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Fran Morris Rosman on August 2, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I love Richard Peck. If I ever have the honor of meeting him, he's gonna get a big ol' hug from me. With this book, he adds another fabulous story to his bookshelf. Great storyline, totally believable characters. It's pretty hard to find a book that combines the early history of car racing and libraries, but Mr. Peck did it in a thoroughly enjoyable way. Thank you for another great read!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By JMack VINE VOICE on July 18, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Tongue in cheek wit and picture perfect images of early twentieth century America serve as a trademark to the talented Richard Peck. If Mark Twain were less wordy and told an interesting story with a faster pace, he might tell a story as well as Richard Peck.

PeeWee, better known as Eleanor, is a tomboy by the standards of the early 20th century. She likes fixing cars, wearing overalls, and dislikes wearing dresses or womanly leisures. So when the four sorority girls from Butler University arrive in town to resurrect the library, they also aim to change Eleanor. Yet even as they make her less of a tomboy, not everything about Eleanor has to change. Eleanor believes her brother Jake has eyes for Irene, the girl Eleanor speaks with most frequently. But just when Eleanor thinks she understands men, a twist comes.

Few writers have such a talent for painting a character's image. This is a real strong point for Peck. Peck makes readers feel a part of a simpler time in American history, and make it laugh-out-loud funny at times. This was not Peck's best story, but I still enjoyed it.
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