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If the name Betty MacDonald sounds familiar, it’s because she is the author of the beloved Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle books. This title, originally published in 1952, isn’t in that category, but it still has its own charm. Like characters in so many children’s books, Nancy and her sister, Plum, are orphans. Their only relative, Uncle John, doesn’t really know children, so he ships the girls off to Mrs. Monday’s Boarding Home for Children, a place where the girls get little to eat, nothing new to wear, and don’t even receive the few letters and gifts their uncle sends. But Nancy and Plum have spunk, and in the course of the story, they find a way to turn things around, though not without ruffling the feathers of Mrs. Monday and her annoying niece. Old-fashioned in the best sense of the word, this is a return to the stories of authors like Eleanor Estes and Elizabeth Enright. The plot sags in the middle, and there may be too much adult help for contemporary readers, but this has a sweetness to which kids will respond. Grades 3-5. --Ilene Cooper
Betty MacDonald was born Anne Elizabeth Campbell Bard in Boulder, Colorado, in 1908. The daughter of a mining engineer, she spent her early years in some of the mining towns of Idaho, Montana, and Mexico. When she was nine, her father took the family—his wife and five children—to Seattle, where Betty lived until shortly after her marriage.
Among her books for children are Nancy and Plum, originally published in 1952, and the beloved classics Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle’s Magic, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle’s Farm, and Hello, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle.
Mary GrandPré is perhaps best known for creating the jackets and illustrations for the Harry Potter books. She has also illustrated The Blue Shoe, a novel for young readers by Robert Townley, as well as many fine picture books, including Chin Yu Min and the Ginger Cat by Jennifer Armstrong and Lucia and the Light by Phyllis Root. You can read more about Mary GrandPré and her work at www.marygrandpre.com.
This was my favorite book as a child and I wanted to share it with my granddaughter. I couldn't find it anywhere until I turned to Amazon. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Ruth Druckenmiller
"Nancy and Plum" is an adventurous and thoroughly wonderful story written by Betty MacDonald.* Two sisters live at an orphanage together and need to endure the hardships. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Homeschool Mom
My favorite book growing up. I bought for my niece but couldn't resist reading it again before I sent.Published 7 months ago by Lynn H Runyon
Great read... redemption and "dreams come true" included. Adventure and imagination await. Reflections of a simpler and more innocent time. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Heather Jordan
Betty MacDonald also knew how to write for children. Her hard-working life in Washington's mountainous wilderness and the lonely hours she spent with just the chickens and her... Read morePublished 9 months ago by A. Conner
This is a classic story for children and adults too especially if you like Betty Macdonald like I do the two sisters go through all sorts of challenges when they are sent away by... Read morePublished 9 months ago by D.C.R.