In a message dated 12/6/99 5:07:13 PM Eastern Standard Time, Stolzi@...
> I hope David's not putting FIVE LITTLE PEPPERS in the same bag.
> It has spunky children with some interesting obstacles to overcome.
> Unfortunately, in the first book, they really overcome them all (by
> being adopted into the family of a rich gentleman) and the sequels
> never measure up, in my opinion. . . I owned the first book as a
> child and read it with great interest, being an only child myself and
> not having any intimate acquaintance with the kind of hardscrabble
> poverty described in FIVE LITTLE PEPPERS.
Is this the book I think I remember? I probably read this somewhere between
1960 and 1962. By that point it was way out of fashion, so it was probably
something that my mother had read as a child and had sitting around. Even
then I found the idea that your best hope of getting out of poverty was to be
adopted by a rich man to be strange. I can't call my family poor, more like
struggling working-class. My father made enough working a job and a half
that we might have been middle-class if my parents hadn't been silly enough
to have eight kids.
If I'm remembering the right book, I found it funny when the kids in that
book talked about how "someday our ship will come in". I had never heard
that phrase before (in the meaning of "someday we'll make our fortune"). I
thought that was hilarious. I remember telling my mother, "Mom, our ship
just came in. Unfortunately, it hit the side of the pier and sank." Boy, I
was one snide, cynical little kid. But then I'm also one snide, cynical