The Ellie Mcdoodle diaries; Have pen, Will travel


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Eleven-year-old budding artist Eleanor McDougal shares the sketch diary she keeps throughout her camping trip to northern Michigan. She’s making the trip with relatives she does not know very well. Her descriptions of Aunt Ug, Uncle Ewing, and her three cousins are scathing, while she portrays herself as an accomplished artist, naturalist, and born leader.

Readers see other facets of Ellie’s character as she teases and berates her cousins and ignores her three-year-old brother. When her behavior gets out of control, the adults step in with discipline that forces Ellie to get to know her cousins. Initially the kids forge friendships by playing pranks on the others, but ultimately they enjoy many adventures.

Ellie shares instructions and diagrams for games such as “Spoons,” “Fing Fang Fooey,” and “Sardines” that are easy to follow and will inspire readers to gather friends and play.

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The Ellie Mcdoodle diaries; Have pen, Will travel