Email this review


The ten-year-old we met in Anastasia Krupnik is now twelve, amusingly insecure around boys and such, but supremely complacent about her family's Cambridge lifestyle and aghast at the prospect of moving to the suburbs. Her snobbish stereotypes about split-level suburbia (""premature assumptions,"" pronounces her unintentionally stuffy Harvard-professor father) are shaken a bit when the whole family falls in love with a big old house that has a tower room for Anastasia. And while the new next-door neighbor, a woman in her 80s, does eat TV dinners, possess kitchy whatnots, and even wears pink plastic curlers (this last a result of Anastasia's resolve to spiff her up), she's not at all as Anastasia had imagined. With her precocious two-and-a-half-year-old brother Sam as a vanguard softener, and the local senior citizens' group as co-conspirators, Anastasia sets about reviving the grouchy old neighbor, who has self-protectively withdrawn from human society. There are other threads here--Anastasia's mixed feelings about the attentions of a jerky boy from her old neighborhood, her daily tennis games with a nicer boy in the new neighborhood, her attempts at writing a mystery novel--and they all come together in the warm, funny, expertly orchestrated party that closes the story. Light but not fluffy, this is a sequel that gives us a maturing but no less spanking-keen heroine.

Pub Date: Oct. 26th, 1982
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin