Monday, July 02, 2007

Ellie McDoodle: Have Pen, Will Travel

I just picked up a copy of ELLIE MCDOODLE: HAVE PEN, WILL TRAVEL by Ruth Barshaw. I had it on my list of books I wanted to read and saw it at the bookstore yesterday. So glad I picked it up!

I have always been drawn to books that were like journals. Much of this book is Ellie McDoodle's sketch book. Ellie McDoodle is a great character. She is fun and honest.

The plot is one that lots of kids (and adults:-) can probably relate to--Ellie is forced to go camping with relatives that she does not always enjoy. She "observes" these relatives on their trip, and she lets us know (quite often) how very annoying they all are. The trip continues and Ellie learns that she actually enjoys time with her family and they aren't really that annoying.

Fans of the AMELIA'S NOTEBOOK series by Marissa Moss will enjoy Ellie. Ellie's sketchbook is fun and detailed. So much thinking goes into her sketches and notes. The book is chapter book length and seems perfect for kids in grades 3-5ish. It seems like it can span the upper elementary grades pretty easily. Lots to love for many ages.

I remember reading about this book on the Class of 2K7 website. So many great books are coming out of that group of authors!

The author, Ruth McNally Barshaw, has some great websites for readers. Her author website is full of great info. She also has a great blog about the process of creating the books--what a fun read! I am always on the lookout for great books to serve as models for kids' own writers' notebooks. This is one I'll add to my collection.

Sounds like Ellie McDoodle might be a series--I couldn't find information on any future books about Ellie, but it seems like the perfect book to be the first in a great new series.


  1. Sounds like a fun book! I'll have to go check it out! Thanks for the review!

  2. Anonymous12:06 AM

    I picked up an ARC of this at this year's TLA convention and my 8-year-old devoured it. Fun and highly recommended...


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