She heads in just the right direction to appeal to children. The author has a special talent for incorporating whopping...

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HENRIETTA GOES WEST

She heads in just the right direction to appeal to children. The author has a special talent for incorporating whopping nonsense into a believable story and it is hard to tell just where the transition occurs between fantasy and reality. Although the book is for the most part very funny, it starts with a tragedy (a car accident which hospitalizes the three Nelson children and kills their parents) and ends with another (not as disastrous an accident but one which helps them to realize they can no longer live with the elderly aunt and uncle they had come to love). Aunt Em and Uncle Elmer, from Iowa, were the only available relatives to take in Chris, Petey and Jenny, who had lived all around the world but never on a farm. Chris' reactions to the realities of farm life are almost as surprised as they are to his later, incredible experiences. The children are offered a trip west on Henrietta-- an aged but spry automobile with all the inventions of Uncle Elmer. Henrietta's eccentricities become more and more pronounced and the trip has marvelous moments of slapstick which blend into the warm relationship which develops between the youngsters and their aunt and uncle.... By the author of the excellent Mr. Pudgins (1951) and in a similar vein.

Pub Date: May 18, 1966

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1966