23 November 2016

Books I Love: Ramona Quimby, Age 8

Ramona Quimby, Age 8
Beverly Cleary
I first read this book
during third grade, approximately 1985

Like the Harry Potter books, I truly love all the Ramona books, probably even more than Harry Potter because I read these as a child. There's that great line in You've Got Mail where Meg Ryan's character talks about books we read as children having a far greater impact on us than anything we read later in life.

I think that's true. It's certainly true of Ramona Quimby, Age 8. Ramona Quimby is still one of my very best friends, and she always will be. No one can convince me she's not real. She has a statue!

Ramona Quimby immortalized in bronze
in Portland, Oregon.
photo by Sara K Joiner
Ramona's very specific problems are what makes her so universally appealing and so enchanting to meet in the pages of a book. How on earth does a fad like cracking hard-boiled eggs on your head start anyway? I have no idea, but it does. Naturally, Ramon is going to have a problem with this situation. Does she learn a lesson? Do readers? Not necessarily the one adults might like.

Being a kid is tough. Ramona Quimby helped me through some pretty difficult times when I was younger. She still gets me through rough patches today. I can only hope the characters I create speak to my readers the same way Ramona Quimby speaks to me.

And if someone decides to build a statue of one of them? That wouldn't be so bad either.

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