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The Moffats Hardcover – September 25, 1941

4.7 out of 5 stars 67 customer reviews
Book 1 of 4 in the Moffats Series

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Who else but a member of the Moffat family could, during kindergarten recess, accidentally hitch a ride out of town on a boxcar? Or wind up trapped in the breadbox outside the delicatessen store? Or kindly offer to escort the Salvation Army man to his destination--only to accidentally bump him out of his own horse-drawn wagon? The Moffats is a paradigm of old-fashioned family fun. Four children and a hard-working widowed mother live together on New Dollar Street in the village of Cranbury. Their seemingly quiet lives are studded with almost daily unexpected adventures, with droll results.

This charming book has been making readers smile for over half a century. It reflects a gentler era, when the jolly chief of police had time to sit on the curb to hear a little girl's "crimes" and a little boy's escapade on a train was not cause for media panic, just a simple redirecting by the agreeable engineer. Eleanor Estes, author of the Newbery Honor book The Hundred Dresses, and Caldecott medalist Louis Slobodkin (Many Moons) make a lovely team in this story of benign humor and sweet times. (Ages 8 to 12) --Emilie Coulter

Review

 . . ideal family listening fare (Booklist )

The full cast treatment of this story adds texture and depth to the characters. (Chicago Parent )

The performances are splendid. (Earphones Award Winner) (Audiofile Magazine ) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 4 - 7
  • Hardcover: 276 pages
  • Publisher: Harcourt, Brace and World (September 25, 1941)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 015255095X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0152550950
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.7 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (67 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #656,312 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I have enjoyed Eleanor Estes books since before I could read - my grandmother used to read them aloud to me. The situations faced by the Moffats not only give a glimpse into a simpler era, but also remind the reader that the important things in childhood never really change. Though the stories are set many years ago, the basic problems faced by the Moffat children are timeless. On my 13th birthday I was given a signed copy of 'The Moffats.' Until then I didn't know the author was my cousin and that the events in the Moffat books were based on her own childhood. Rufus was her beloved little brother Teddy. Jane (the middle Moffat) was Eleanor herself. The town of Cranberry is really West Haven, Connecticut. Rereading the books as an adult brings the old amusement park Savin Rock back to life. And my mother recalls riding the old trolley. Eleanor's books are as honest as she was herself; a reminder in this too-cynical world that children have much to teach us about what really matters if we have the wisdom to learn from them.
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By A Customer on December 22, 1999
Format: Hardcover
There is something so very special about the Moffet books. The author really seems to remember childhood as few authors do. She knows what kind of little moments are so important then, but disappear from most of our minds as we get older. She is especially good at describing places---the town the Moffets live in comes so alive, and I can picture just where their house is on their street, although it must have been 15 years since I last read this book!
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A Kid's Review on April 7, 2005
Format: Paperback
Wow! I loved this book! Between Jane being in a bread box, to Rufus getting on the freight train car. I think that everybody will like this book if they read it. When I started this book, it was like I couldn't put it down. I would read it like 2 hours a day, and I only was required to read 30 minutes for school! I loved it! Now I'm starting to read all the sequels to Eleanor Estes' fantastic books. I'm telling you, READ THIS BOOK!
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Format: Paperback
Title: The Moffats
By: Eleanor Estes
Reviewed By: Samantha C.
Period:1
This book, the Moffats, is about a family of five. There is a mother and four children. Each of the children have their own special talent to make a basic job or activity into a bigger and more fun adventure. With their mischevious ways, going anywhere is fun. The children are Sylvie, who is the oldest, Joey, who sometimes think he is very superior, Janey, who has her own creative ways to seeing things, and Rufus, who can create trouble everywhere he goes. For example, they make a big deal about them having to sell their special house on New Dollar Street. They were able to think of so many ways from stopping people to buy, since all the Moffats thought the house they were living in was better then the others because they were able to see the whole street at one glance.
I enjoyed the book because it was very fun reading about the Moffat children making all kinds of mischievious problems. It was funny to see how Janey would be amazed with such little things. For example, in the first chapter, it qouted,"Jane could not take her eyes from her mother's hands. They had a way of doing things, peeling apples, sprinkling salt, counting pennies, that fascinated her". Janey was amazed at the way her mother did those simple tasks. Usually nobody really pays much attention to those small actions, but Janey sure does!
Another qoute is,"At last they were off, with Rufus in one of his every day sailor suits". When you first read this quote, ti may not mean much, but if you understand the background of that chapter, it will have more meaning to it. It was a Sunday morining, and the Moffats were all dressed up and ready to go to cghurch.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Recently I rediscovered my old paperback copies of Eleanor Estes' Moffat books. I read them first way back in the 1960s in elementary school and really enjoyed them, and it's nice to pick them up again and reread them with adult eyes.

The Moffat Museum was written many years after the first three Moffat books, and so inevitably there is a difference in tone here and there. But even so it's always a delight to read about the adventures of Sylvie, Joey, Jane, and especially Rufus Moffat. They live with their widowed mother in a small house on Ashbellows Place in Cranbury, Connecticut. It's just after World War I, and money is tight. Their mother sews to earn money, and Sylvie and especially Joe work a variety of jobs to contribute their share, but this doesn't stop the fun. Jane and Rufus are once again the main characters. This time they've decided to set up a Moffat Museum, and they collect a variety of unusual and sometimes bizarre objects for it. Eventually many other people get involved, and the Museum becomes an unlikely success.

Since the Moffats are getting older there are some big changes in this book. Sylvie gets married and Joey goes away to school. Both Jane and Rufus are learning more about the world Like its predecessors The Moffat Museum is a series of independent though interconnected plotlines, told with gentle humor and simple, appealing, language.
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