Thursday, May 21, 2009

[Book Review] LOVE AMONG THE WALNUTS by Jean Ferris

Fiction/Young Adult

Beth reviews LOVE AMONG THE WALNUTS by Jean Ferris (Harcourt, 1998).

I hadn’t planned on reviewing this book. It was simply a quick, pleasure read, but the more I read, the more I laughed. The more I laughed, the more I shared tidbits with friends. The next thing I know, my friends are insisting that I’ve “got to write it up!” So here is a teaser for this great young adult novel, Love Among the Walnuts.

Does money solve all your problems? Not according to self-made millionaire Horatio Alger Huntington-Ackerman. He is lonely and bored. His two brothers, Bart and Bernie, are mean and troublesome. His valet, Bentley, decides that a night at the theater is in order. Amazingly, Horatio attends and much to his delight falls in love with an actress. After a whirlwind courtship, Horatio and Mousey are married. With a child on the way, they decide to leave the city and settle into a luxurious life in the country.

The years pass and the family falls into a pattern of never leaving their country estate. Groceries are delivered and Bart and Bernie come each month for dinner. After one such evening, Horatio, Mousey and the housekeeper cannot be roused. The doctor checks them and determines that they are healthy but in a coma! Sandy, Horatio and Mousey’s son, hires a nurse to care for them. After being fed some of the leftovers, the pet chicken too becomes comatose. Bart and Bernie are furious that Sandy and Bentley are still awake and have the lawyers force Sandy to move the “sleepers” to a hospital or nursing home. Interestingly enough, there is such a place next door!

As time moves forward, Bentley tries to awaken the “sleepers” with different concoctions he creates. He uses the chicken as a guinea pig—she becomes blues, gets the hiccups and much more! Can Bentley truly cure them? Will Bart and Bernie finally win and get Horatio’s money? Can they all survive to see the end of the book?

Enjoy this great story and laugh at all the antics!

Beth, Highland Branch Library

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