SEATMATES by Mary K. Reely


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This brackets two sections, for it can be recommended for the upper level of easy reading (third and fourth grades) and the lower level of this section. A nostalgic looking backwards some fifty years, in a recall- thinly veiled as fiction- of a little girl who comes from a satisfying life on a farm to a prairie town, where all the other children know each other and have their own plans afoot. Some of the incidents of heartache and joy, some of the events of school and play, are fondly recalled, but somehow the characters themselves never become three dimensional, or credible enough for readers to identify themselves with them. There's plenty of incidental happening, from the start when the children go skating, through the satisfaction of first direct contact with a public library, to the gradual establishment of a place in the school scheme of life. The period and regional feel are less real than, for instance, in Ruth Sawyer's Roller Skates. But some children --whose chief delight is in stories of when grandma was a little girl- will enter happily into the somewhat prim and stylized point of view, the high excitement of sleigh rides, of games of marbles, of parties, of a return visit to the farm- and of the start of the new school year.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1949
Publisher: Franklin Watts