Thursday, March 24, 2011

Read-Aloud Thursdays: The Saturdays

The Saturdays (Melendy Quartet)We finished up our latest chapter book last week - The Saturdays by Elizabeth Enright. This book is the first in a series of four about the Melendy children - Mona, Rush, Miranda, and Oliver. Set in the mid-1900's (around the beginning of WWII) this book chronicles that Saturday adventures of this creative and adventurous four-some. On a rainy dreary Saturday, the children were bemoaning the fact that there was nothing to do. Randy, in a fit of inspiration, came up with the idea that if they pooled their allowances (giving them a grand total of $1.60!), they could each, in turn, have a Saturday adventure of their choosing. The choices are as varied as the personality of the children. Rush (the musical one) chose a concert, Randy visited an art exhibit, and Oliver went to the circus (with a few mishaps along the way).

As we have read these books from several decades ago, I am always amazed at the amount of freedom that the children had. They go into the "city", ride buses and subways, feeling perfectly safe and confident on their outings. Much different than today!

We enjoyed this story so much that we voted to continue on to book two in the series, The Four Story Mistake, and we'll hopefully report back on it in the near future.

This post is linked up to Amy's Read Aloud Thursday over at Hope is the Word!


  1. Oh, goody, a RAT post! My girls loved the excerpt from this book that we read in Writing with Ease, and I appreciate your recommendation. One can never really tell from just an excerpt how the rest of the story will go.

  2. We've read all four of them! They are GREAT!!!! It is interesting how much freedom the children had in some of the older books!

  3. I THINK I've heard of these books but never paid much mind to them. But ooooh, after reading your review here I want to hunt them down. I think I'd love them! Glad you highlighted this title in particular.

  4. I love all the Melendy books. One of my absolute favorite series!

  5. this looks great, I've never heard of these before now. Thanks!

  6. I read this one a few years ago after seeing it on one of Jen Robinson's posts. I independence given to the children is surprising but I do think that life was quite a bit different back then. Most children had a lot more responsibility. My own grandmother had to take care of her siblings.

    After reading your post I looked at the author's biography. I was excited to learn that her Newbery book Thimble Summer comes from her experiences on Frank Lloyd Wright's farm in Spring Green, Wisconsin. I grew up near that area and have never read her book, so I'm putting it on my TBR list! Thanks for your post.


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