This tape celebrates fifty years since the book's publication, and it starts with an interview with Beverly Cleary that will probably be of more interest to parents than children. But soon we are thick in the humorous day-to-day adventures of Henry and his friends on Klickitat Street. The story still works for children and parents listening to this tape, and whether they grew up on Cleary or not, they will understand why it has been a classic since publication. Neil Patrick Harris has voice range and dramatic expression that bring all the characters to life, from Ribsy's growls to Henry's mom's resignation at the way Henry handles his dilemmas. There are two cassettes, unabridged. 2001, Harper Children's Audio, $18.00. Ages 6 up. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
Gr 2-5-Actor Neil Patrick Harris reads Beverly Cleary's novel (Morrow, 2000) with verve and expression in this excellent book-on-tape production of the 50th Anniversary edition of the book. Henry's discovery of a stray dog, Ribsy, is just the beginning of a year of excitement and fun. He hunts night-crawlers, raises gallons of guppies, is stuck with a horrible part in the school operetta, and nearly loses Ribsy in this delightful, classic children's book. Harris creates different voices for each character. He particularly gets into the chapter on the school play, making that section especially hilarious. At the beginning and end of the tape, there is an interview with Cleary that provides interesting insights into what inspires her and her views on the writing process. This exceptional production will delight listeners.-Teresa Bateman, Brigadoon Elementary School, Federal Way, WA Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.