THE LAKE PEOPLE by Franz Berliner


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The Lake people are a Danish archaeologist's large and happy family, and their episodic story, despite a few damns and hells, has the same old fashioned ambiance of security, harmony and innocence as Lindgren's Emil books or Gripe's Hugo and Josephine. In separate, loosely connected chapters, twelve year-old Peter and his friend, also named Peter, camp out for a week on a nearby island where they are visited by picnicking German students and by a gang of neighboring bullies; Soren, six, makes a friend he calls Eaglefoot and is temporarily distressed, when his new playmate shows up for Soren's birthday party in a dress, to discover that Eaglefoot is a girl; Marianne amuses the Parson with her skepticism about the Ark. . . and so their idyllic summer progresses, ending with an outdoor party at which first Pop and Mom and then most of the children play, fully clothed, in the moonlit lake. There is no question that this is an idealized family -- though Mom and Pop sleep in with hangovers on Sunday morning, they're cheerfully up and out when Soren wakes them, ready to demonstrate their opposition to war; the appeal will be to those who are content to bask in their rapport.

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1973
Publisher: Putnam