A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Double Fudge is the fifth book in Judy Blume's series of Fudge books about the Hatcher family: Mr. and Mrs. Hatcher; eldest son Peter; middle child Farley Drexel (aka "Fudge"); and baby daughter Tootsie. In this installment, Fudge's newfound obsession with money leads to some hilarious situations, and puts the Hatchers in the path of their long-lost Hawaiian cousins. The book takes an honest, funny look at the value of money and other basic "family values," such as how to educate one's children, what foods kids should eat, and whether any TV is too much. A situation where Fudge's pet is injured could be (temporarily) alarming to small children. A different sort of upsetting situation involves Jimmy Fargo's parents, who have been divorced for a while; Peter and his friend Jimmy talk seriously about what it means for Jimmy's dad to date. Also note: This book may debunk the existence of the Tooth Fairy.
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What's the story?
In the fifth installment in Judy Blume's series of "Fudge" books, 5-year-old Farley Drexel "Fudge" Hatcher develops a fascination with money, prompting his parents to worry about the values they've imparted to their children. To teach Fudge some real facts about money, the Hatchers decide to take Fudge to Washington, D.C., to visit the Bureau of Printing and Engraving. The trip is less than successful in its mission, but the Hatchers coincidentally meet up with Mr. Hatcher's long-lost cousin, Howie, who's traveling with his own family: his wife, Eudora; daughters, Flora and Fauna; and 3-year-old son who is also named Farley Drexel. The meeting results in a hilarious culture/values clash as "the Howies" (as Peter calls them) descend on New York City and Fudge has some real competition for the world's most impossible little brother.
Is it any good?
Judy Blume outdoes herself with Double Fudge. Aptly named, this book is easily twice as funny as the previous book, Fudge-a-Mania, with the introduction of the entertaining "Howies." Parents and kids will laugh at the way this book pokes fun at nouvel parenting ideas (no candy, no TV, no sleepovers), and kids will feel Peter's pain when his cousins embarrass him at school as well as at home. As always, Blume also manages to sneak in a few lessons along the way: Fudge may have a lot of fun thinking about money, but his real little heart shows when Uncle Feather is hurt. Both Peter and Fudge are believable, lovable characters, and this volume of the Fudge chronicles takes the humor to a new level.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about Fudge's fixation with money. Why are his parents worried about this? Who in this book do you think has the right idea about the value of money? What did you learn about money from reading Double Fudge?
How do you think Double Fudge compares with the other books in the "Fudge" series? Is it as funny? Funnier?
Peter and Fudge's parents have different ideas about child raising. Who do you think is right about candy? Or TV?
- Author: Judy Blume
- Genre: Family Life
- Topics: Brothers and Sisters, Friendship, Science and Nature
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Penguin Group
- Publication date: October 1, 2002
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 8 - 11
- Number of pages: 224
- Available on: Paperback, Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks
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