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The Egg and I Paperback – June 24, 2008
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This month's Book With Buzz: "Little Fires Everywhere" by Celeste Ng
From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture - perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. See more
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"Anyone who has ever struggled with a farm or even with a small garden will especially enjoy this breezy autobiography, But everyone will find its hilarious reminiscences of an unconventional childhood and of unique experiences in the Northwest Pacific sprightly, diverting, and excellent entertainment. The whole book crackles with the innocent deviltry of acorns hitting the roof-tops." -- "Saturday Review of Literature""For all the allegedly gloomy moments, The Egg and l is an astoundingly light-hearted book. The MacDonalds, one gathers, had both youth and gumption on their side, to say nothing of an abounding humor that bounced them over the direst crises." "-- New York Times"
About the Author
A longtime resident of Washington State, Betty MacDonald (1908-1958) authored four humorous, autobiographical bestsellers and several children's books, including the popular Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle books.
Top customer reviews
If you think the chickens are silly, you’ll love their neighbors, the Kettle family. For those of you that loved the “Ma and Pa Kettle” films of the 1950’s, here’s where they started, right here in the Pacific Northwest, the silliest farmers in the USA. MacDonald wrote about them based on her neighbors, the Bishops, who sued the MacDonalds for defamation (and lost) after the movie came out. The Ma and Pa Kettle movies are long since forgotten, but they’re a hilarious bunch in this book.
Though this book is comedy, there is a very dark and disturbing chapter, reserved for the Native Americans. Raised on the Hiawatha poem to believe that all natives were noble savages, she’s shocked to discover their level of degeneracy. The men, women, and children are all alcoholics, and kids as young as 12 are drinking moonshine. Old men are having sex with the children in public, and babies are allowed to eat garbage they find on the beach. It’s as though they’ve become worse than the inbred white trash of South Carolina, and though it wasn’t diagnosed then, I bet the children all had fetal alcohol syndrome.
I’m not sure how much value this book has today, except maybe to those of us contemplating a career in organic farming. If you’re wondering why I read this book in the first place, the answer is that I looked up the author of the Mrs. Pigglewiggle series and found that she wrote this before she got into children’s books.
I say semi-autobiographical as she had to change some names/locations so she wouldn't offend her neighbors.
It also provides some great details about her early life before her marriage, and what life was like during the Great Depression.
Much better than the film version with Claudette Colbert and Fred MacMurray, and that was a pretty good little film.