At last Beverly Cleary has given Ramona Quimby a book of her own. No longer is she the shy nemesis of Henry Huggins or the exasperating responsibility of Beezus. Instead she is a five-year-old with spirit'and a rare opportunity to explain her side of things.
The story deals with Ramona's entrance into kindergarten, a memorable event for all concerned. Whether Ramona is proving what a good rester she is by snoring delicately during quiet time or whether she is pulling Susan's tempting curls, she makes her presence known. Most of the time Ramona loves her teacher, Miss Binney, wholeheartedly. How Miss Binney feels is anyone's guess. Mrs. Quimby tells her daughter, "She will never forget you as long as she lives."
Nothing seems quite so funny to children as the tales of what they did when they were little. Here then is an account of kindergarten days for readers who have passed that awkward stage. Many will find that Ramona's escapades hilarious; others will be moved by her struggles to make a place for herself in an uncomprehending world.
About the Author
Beverly Cleary is one of America's most beloved authors. As a child, she struggled with reading and writing. But by third grade, after spending much time in her public library in Portland, she found her skills had greatly improved. Before long, her school librarian was saying that she should write children's books when she grew up.
Instead she became a librarian. When a young boy asked her, "Where are the books about kids like us?" she remembered her teacher's encouragement and was inspired to write the books she'd longed to read but couldn't find when she was younger. She based her funny stories on her own neighborhood experiences and the sort of children she knew. And so, the Klickitat Street gang was born!
Mrs. Cleary's books have earned her many prestigious awards, including the American Library Association's Laura Ingalls Wilder Award, presented to her in recognition of her lasting contribution to children's literature. Ramona Quimby, Age 8 and Ramona and Her Father have also been named Newbery Honor Books. Her characters, including Beezus and Ramona Quimby, Henry Huggins, and Ralph, the motorcycle-riding mouse, have delighted children for generations.