Our rating: ****½

Just another walk in the woods. A bag of cookies, his dog Wowser, and his good friend Oscar—what else could Sterling North want? Then Wowser finds a den-full of raccoon kits, and the boys decide to take them home. They can’t take them home without the mother, so they determine to catch the treed raccoon . . . with the aid of no more than a pocket knife and their jackets. The results are laughable. In the skirmish, the mother and three kits escape, but one of the kits isn’t quick enough. Sterling takes tiny Rascal home and obtains permission to keep him. Getting the permission isn’t hard, as his mother is dead, his older sisters are living away from the house, and his older brother is fighting in the war. His father lives in a world all his own, only occasionally taking time to be with his young son. He doesn’t mind the raccoon—or the canoe Sterling is building in the living room. Everything progresses wonderfully until Rascal develops a taste for sweet corn. The angry neighbors, robbed of their crops, demand that Rascal be kept in a cage. How can Sterling lock up a young, wild creature? Some tough decisions face him and he has to answer them.

I love this book. It is so interesting and enjoyable. Rascal is such a cute raccoon! Sterling North does a wonderful job of telling the story. There are so many adventures and characters. The memorable incidents with his older sister Theo’s missing engagement ring, the school bully, and the pie-eating contest. Very funny and memorable. Unfortunately, there are a few evolutionary references and, if I remember correctly, a mild bad word or two.

One Response to “Rascal”

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