Man of the Familyby Ralph Moody
"Ralph Moody's books should be read aloud in every family circle in America"-Sterling North. [Moody] has a splendid talent for bringing the ashes of the past into life."-Chicago Sunday Tribune.
- Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
- Publication date:
Meet the Author
Ralph Moody (1898–1982) is the author of Come on Seabicuit! as well as the Little Britches series about a boy's life on a Colorado ranch, all available in Bison Books editions.
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Engrossing, engaging, and heart-warming without maudlin sentiment. A memoire on the lines of Ckeaper by the Dozen, Ralph Moody writes about growing up in Colorado during the early 1900s. Nothing is easy, but the struggle is told with good-humor and truth. Several laugh outloud situations are balanced by endearing moments of a large family making a living under harsh conditions. Some of the best tales share Ralph's struggle with those shades of gray that run through his mother's black and white moral instructions. By no means a perfect boy, Ralph schemes to keep his beloved mare, skip school as often as possible, and jockey horse races while not lying to his mother or torturing himself with the weight of a guilty conscience. A truly lovely book worth reading again and again. I will be gifting it to several of my reading friends.
Little Britches is back in Man of the Family. Now as a young boy, he's the man in the house and works with his mother and older sister to find ways to survive. They're off the ranch and living in town. In the process they find incredible ways to make a living. Entrepreneurship at its best. This book is filled with the importance of community, neighbors, and standing on your own. Little Britches makes sacrifices in order to accept his role as the man in the family. Grace, the eldest daughter, also shoulders a lot of responsibility. Together they try to take as much of the load off their mother as possible. The author has a way of writing scenes so vividly that you are transported into the middle and feel every emotion. This book can be read on its own. But for those who have read Little Britches, you will love seeing so many characters return. These books make me think of Little House on the Prairie, only for boys. But everyone can enjoy them.
This book, as well as the first in the series, were recommended to me by a student of mine. I started reading them more to appease my student then for any other reason, but to my surprise, I really got in to them, and asked her if I could borrow subsequent books in the series. The books follow the life of Ralph Moody, from about age 9, when his family decided to try ranching out West, in an attempt to find a way of life that was healthier for Ralph's father as well as the rest of the family. This book picks up after events detailed in the first book leave Ralph with more responsibility than ever.
It is similar in feel to a "Little House on the Pararie" book, only more from the male perspective, and definately more action oriented. Ralph's creativity and ingenuity are wonderfully detailed, and the ideals of love and family are paramount. I ended up passing along these books to my nieces and nephews, and they have become family favorites.