Kirkus Reviews QR Code
RAMONA FOREVER by Alan Tiegreen Kirkus Star


illustrated by Alan Tiegreen, by Beverly Cleary

Pub Date: Aug. 15th, 1984
ISBN: 0380709600
Publisher: Morrow/HarperCollins

So it appears--for Ramona now looks set to weather the advent of a baby sister! Lots happens in this latest installment of the Quinby family chronicles. Pal Jason's "rich" Uncle Herbert arrives from Saudi Arabia (looking "ordinary," in a muddy van), and in the to-do Ramona realizes that Jason's sitter-grandmother doesn't like her. "Until this minute she had thought all adults were supposed to like all children." She's through with going there after school, she announces at the family dinner table, and Beezus seconds her. (Why is Beezus so ready to stay home and look after Ramona? Junior-high troubles--aggravated by pimply skin.) Dad is too calm, too tolerant, now that he's studying to be a teacher--and with the teacher surplus that Aunt Bea has spoken of, will he get a job? Beezus has also caught intimations that Mother may not be working much longer, "because she's going to have a baby"--and the baby part doesn't sit well with Ramona at all. The direst possibility doesn't materialize: the Quinbys don't move from Portland to take the single, remote teaching job offered. Instead, Dad will become a manager for the supermarket-chain where he's been working part-time. (Like it? "We can't always do what we want in life," as today's theme goes, "so we do the best we can.") But these developments, and more (the death and burial of elderly puss Picky-picky), are briefly overshadowed by Aunt Bea's and Uncle Hobart's marriage--and the real wedding he speedily arranges for the Alaska-bound couple, over female protestations that it can't be done. It's a measure of Cleary's talent and acumen that the Quinbys are as credible in the mid-1980s as they were in the mid-1950s.