This is one of those annoying instances where I can't find a text to go with an audiobook. The good news is that the audiobook is well done, so at least you can hear it read.
Dandelion Cottage by Carroll Watson Rankin, gets little recognition online: no Wikipedia entry (I'm thinking about fixing that), no e-text that I can find, just an audiobook.
That link I keep giving has the best summary so far, though I hope to improve on it.
The cottage that has served as the parsonage for a local church has fallen into disrepair, and when a new minister comes with too large a family to fit, it is retired. The minister's daughter and three of her friends ask Mr. Black, a church official in charge of the cottage, for permission to use it as a playhouse during the summer. Since the yard is overrun with weeds, especially dandelions, he offers to let them use the cottage in return for weeding the place.
The girls not only weed the yard but do what they can to fix the place up, and they promise to invite Mr. Black to a dinner at the cottage once they have everything ready. But he has to leave town, and all manner of events transpire, some good, some bad. In particular, they pick up some odious neighbors who team up with a naive know-it-all to cause incredible trouble. There are some good lessons here concerning how to deal with jerks and the consequences of losing your temper.
The climax of the story is the long-awaited dinner, which in one way works out predictably and in another doesn't--though in retrospect it all makes perfect sense.
On the whole, this is a good book for children (except that it might give them ideas about trying the same thing...); just remember that the girls are just beginning their teens, and this was a different century. They're more childlike than modern kids in some ways and more mature in others. But kids can learn from that: it's good for all of us to know that there have been other times and ways.
So once again, this is the link for the audiobook.
1 year ago