Outside of the Ramona books, I probably read the Fudge books the most growing up. Of course, I’m old enough to recall when there was only one book feature the Hatcher family and the excitement I felt when I discovered that Blume had published a sequel. But that’s probably a future Way Back Wednesday Installment.
Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing is told to us from the point of view of Peter Hatcher. Peter and his family live in an apartment in New York City. Peter is the oldest child and has a crazy brother who goes by the name of Fudge, Peter’s prized possession is his pet turtle that he wins at a friend’s birthday party.
The book is an episodic one with Peter relating various aspects of the family’s life and dealing with Fudge. Fudge becomes the star of an ad campaign for his father in one chapter and attempts to go on a hunger strike in another — with hilarious results. His parents becomes so frustrated that they tell Fudge to “eat it or wear it” to which Fudge decides to wear the food. Somehow this phrase became part of my family’s lexicon and my parents would quote it to me and my sister if we turned up our noses at something served to us at the dinner table.
Of course, Fudge is jealous of the turtle and this leads to the final chapter in which Fudge eats the turtle and has to go the the hospital. Peter realizes that while Fudge is annoying, he still loves his brother and in the end, they get a dog that they name…wait for it…Turtle.
I have a lot of fond memories of this book. It was one of those comfy books I re-read many times. A few years ago, I saw a stage production of the book and it brought back a lot of good memories. I know that Blume has penned a couple of sequels to the book, featuring the Hatcher family.
Again, more on that in weeks to come….