Thursday, February 21, 2008
Estes, Eleanor. 1941. The Moffats.
The Moffats may not be the most exciting, thrilling, page-turning book I've ever read, but it is enjoyable none the less in its quiet, subtle, gentle way. The book focuses on the Moffat family. A mother raising her kids alone. The family is not rich--as you can imagine--but there is a loving, caring atmosphere that makes for a very happy home. The book is episodic. The narrator or main character changes from chapter to chapter. And there is no one connecting plot that threads them altogether. (Well, maybe that isn't quite true. If there is such a plot it would be that their landlord has put their house up for sale. This occurs in the first or second chapter. And the house is sold and the Moffats have to move in the last chapter.) Each chapter is a story of sorts about what life is like--daily life around the house, around school, around town, etc. The stories are mostly lighthearted and fun. But there are some serious moments as well, some moments that border on being a lesson in morality. For readers looking for family-oriented, family-friending reading material, The Moffats is sure to satisfy.
First sentences: The way Mama could peel apples! A few turns of the knife and there the apple was, all skinned! 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.