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Freddy and The Bean Home News
Freddy and The Bean Home News

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Grade Levels: 3+

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Timberdoodle's review

Freddy and The Bean Home News
When the editor of the Centerboro Guardian loses the newspaper to the thoroughly wicked -- and exceedingly wealthy -- Mrs. Underdunk, Freddy helps by starting a rival newspaper, The Bean Home News, the first animal newspaper. Maybe Freddy and the Bean Home News will inspire your children to start their own local newspaper! Released during WWII, Freddy and the Bean Home News also has a sub-plot that involves the animals' efforts in a scrap iron drive.

Freddy the Pig
The first twenty years of momhood meant evenings with a read-aloud book and a roomful of captivated kids. Years later, as we reminisce, there are just a handful of series that we continue to rave about, and Freddy the Pig is right at the top.

Written by Walter Brooks, who grew up in the farm country of central New York, the Freddy the Pig series made its debut in 1927. This resourceful talking pig, who coincidentally also lives on a central New York State farm, gets into a number of scrapes with similarly remarkable animals; Jinx, a cynical black cat; a literally and figuratively henpecked rooster named Charles; Alice and Emma, spinster-sister ducks; and Mrs. Wiggins, a good-natured cow with a bit more commonsense than the honest, but sometimes lazy, Freddy.

Unlike the shockingly crass series that are all too readily available to children at every turn, Freddy the Pig books embrace wholesome humor and family values typical of the culture and mores of rural United States from 1927 to 1958. Although the farm setting gives it a certain timelessness, the stories do reflect the social conditions at the time of writing; the books published during WWII have scrap drives and victory gardens.

If your children have outgrown the adventures of Pooh, but you shudder to expose them to reality-reading, consider the gentle humor and wholesome (but not browbeating) moral lessons in these books. Through mystery, adventure, philosophy, wit, courage, and duty, the Freddy the Pig books teach families the value of persistence, friendship, loyalty, and the acceptance of the weaknesses of others. Highly recommended as a read-aloud for anyone over the age of five, or for readers nine to twelve years old.

Praise for Freddy
The American version of great English classics, such as the Pooh books or The Wind in the Willows."
-The New York Times Book Review

"...funny beautifully written gems...my very favorite books when I was in elementary school."
- Nicholas Kristof - The New York Times

"Freddy is simply one of the greatest characters in children's literature!"
- School Library Journal

Publisher's Information
Author: Walter R Brooks
Pages: 130
Binding: Soft
Copyright: 1943,1971
ISBN: 9781590204207
Publisher: The Overlook Press
Printed In: USA

Average Customer Review: 4.5 of 5 Total Reviews: 2 Write a review.

  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
Fun, but needs a follow up discussion. July 7, 2012
Reviewer: Rosmartypants  
This was fun to read out loud! Freddy and his friends have great potential for different voices. My children loved the characters in the Freddy books, and would snicker at predictable antics of several of the animals. But were bothered by some of the behavior in the story. Animals purposely making noise at night in hopes of sleepy people throwing metal objects at them- all so they could put them in a metal recycle pile, hoping to win a prize... Funny ...yes. Stealing ....maybe. What I want my kids to do ....no. Freddy's behavior is sometimes problematic as well. In several places in the book he is sneaky and dishonest. The situations are funny, but we were saddened to see Freddy trick people in order to get what he wanted. We kept reading, with hesitation-and needed to discuss it a little afterwards. Freddy the Detective did not raise some of the issues that The Bean Home News did. If you want to read one Freddy book, read Freddy the Detective.

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  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
My boys love these books! May 31, 2012
Reviewer: Amy G  
My oldest sons, ages 7 and 9, love the Freddy books. We stumbled across Freddy the Detective at a library book sale a few years ago, and then we were delighted to see that Timberdoodle had other volumes. It can be hard to find wholesome chapter books these days, especially for boys, but these fit the bill perfectly. Better yet, my 7 year old was so inspired by this book that he started his own weekly newspaper for our family, so now he's learning computer skills, spelling, and more each week when he creates his newspaper.

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