The Facts and Fictions of Minna Pratt

Book review by
Matt Berman, Common Sense Media
The Facts and Fictions of Minna Pratt Book Poster Image
Minna grows up with odd friends and relatives.

Parents say

age 17+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 2 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Positive Messages
Violence & Scariness

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that there is nothing of concern in this book. On the contrary, it's full of love and kindness -- all of it believable.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byqueenny November 25, 2012

hate it

I hate this book!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Adult Written byYF April 9, 2008
Teen, 13 years old Written byanhjimmy16 February 17, 2011
Kid, 12 years old April 9, 2008

What's the story?

Minna is growing up and has a wonderful assortment of oddball friends and relatives, blithe spirits all, who sometimes seem to her to move through the world with more ease and confidence than she can muster. Her brother, McGrew, loves lurid headlines, and sings most of the time, much to the annoyance of his teachers. His best friend is Emily Parmalee, the catcher on his baseball team, who likes to wear feather earrings.

Minna loves Mozart and the cello, and in her music class is a boy named Lucas, who has a vibrato, collects frogs, and has, so she thinks, the perfect family. Her mother is a writer who believes that \"fact and fiction are different truths.\" She has a music teacher named Porch (called by McGrew \"Old Back\") who calls the chamber group \"mass assembled sound\". In this book even the taxi driver can end up fixing the kitchen sink and demonstrating a new way to make coffee.

Is it any good?

Patricia MacLachlan's stories are a rarity in today's children's books: simple, gentle tales of children who manage to be reasonably nice kids without being insipid. This is an amazingly delightful book, a book that makes you smile all through it, a book that makes you want to know all of the characters in real life.

MacLachlan doesn't seem to believe in villains, and her books, especially this one, will make you wonder why anyone ever thought they were necessary. In the world of Minna Pratt, people can be good and kind and thoughtful and still, amazingly, likable and real and fascinating. The book is wonderful for all children who can enjoy a story without a lot of action and adventure, but for budding musicians it will be a special treat.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the way these people treat each other -- their love and kindness, acceptance of eccentricity, the blithe way they romp through life. Is it possible for people to be like this?

Book details

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