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Nature-related books, i.e. Girl of the Limberlost


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I have a book of essays by Kathleen Dean Moore called "Riverwalking Reflections on Moving Water" The essays are a bit philosophical, but there are a lot of interesting biological topics discussed. You might want to just pick a few essays -if you even think it is appropriate for her. The reason I thought of it was that that book made me consider doing biology in my free time. :-)

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There's also Freckles, which is the prequel to A Girl of the Limberlost, and I haven't read it, just skimmed but I think Laddie: A True Blue Story by the same author is similar. Oh, and Bambi. Wonderful book. 

 

Oh, you *must* read Freckles first. I did not care for Limberlost in the least :ack2: but it would have made a little more sense to me in the beginning if I had read Freckles first. Not that I ever intend to read Freckles...

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Oh, you *must* read Freckles first. I did not care for Limberlost in the least :ack2: but it would have made a little more sense to me in the beginning if I had read Freckles first. Not that I ever intend to read Freckles...

I am having trouble understanding what you are saying here.

 

Anyway, I loved Limberlost as a child. Loved it. I finally found a copy of Freckles, started to read it, and put it down. It seemed to me more a tale of his developing Christian faith, which didn't seem to be a major theme in Limberlost, or really mentioned at all that I recall.

 

Another idea inspired by the suggestion of Durrell's books -- Girls Who Looked Under Rocks: The Lives of Six Pioneering Naturalists by Jeannine Atkins and Paula Conner, has a brief overview of Maria Merian, Anna Comstock (author of the Handbook of Nature Study), Frances Hamerstrom, Rachel Carson, Miriam Rothschild, and Jane Goodall, and you could go from there into others. Far From Shore: Chronicles of an Open Ocean Voyage by Sophie Webb, might also interest her. My library has a series called Women's Adventures in Science that includes a forensic anthropologist, planetary geologist, astronomer, climate scientist, and robot designer. Or something about Dian Fossey or Marie Curie. 

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I am having trouble understanding what you are saying here.

 

Anyway, I loved Limberlost as a child. Loved it. I finally found a copy of Freckles, started to read it, and put it down. It seemed to me more a tale of his developing Christian faith, which didn't seem to be a major theme in Limberlost, or really mentioned at all that I recall.

 

 

I am, apparently, truly out standing in my field when it comes to Girl of the Limberlost. I read it as an adult after moving to San Jose and having, IDK, five or six or maybe every single woman in my support group almost speechless with their love for this book. And so I read it, because I'm always looking for a new good book. I remember being a little confused at the beginning because of references to Freckles (moth collection? something like that) but I got over that because for the rest of the book I was like this :huh: . I read every single word, to the last page. I tried to appreciate all of its finer points, but no. And so I did not feel the need to read Freckles. I can only say that I think it should be read before Limberlost. Not that I think anyone should read that, either. Sorry, y'all.

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Since I have never heard of either Freckles or Limberlost before, what exactly is the connection between the two books?  I read the descriptions on Amazon, but it wasn't immediately obvious to me which character(s) were in both books or what other connection might be there.

 

My DD really liked "Girls Who Looked Under Rocks."   :-)

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I am, apparently, truly out standing in my field when it comes to Girl of the Limberlost. I read it as an adult after moving to San Jose and having, IDK, five or six or maybe every single woman in my support group almost speechless with their love for this book. And so I read it, because I'm always looking for a new good book. I remember being a little confused at the beginning because of references to Freckles (moth collection? something like that) but I got over that because for the rest of the book I was like this :huh: . I read every single word, to the last page. I tried to appreciate all of its finer points, but no. And so I did not feel the need to read Freckles. I can only say that I think it should be read before Limberlost. Not that I think anyone should read that, either. Sorry, y'all.

Oh, okay, so you found the Freckles references confusing and therefore think reading Freckles first would be helpful, but, because you didn't like Limberlost, you'd rather not. Okay. It was your apparent enthusiasm for Freckles that confused me. Unlike you, I've never met anyone in real life who's read this book, or any other older girls' books, for that matter, so, sadly, I've never had anyone to "gush" over it with. Or even Anne of Green Gables. But I still have my old copy. It is (of course!) a Dell Yearling.

 

Kirstenhill: The chap in Freckles and the women he eventually marries appear in Limberlost, as does Bird Woman, who is an older woman and nature enthusiast/photographer. Both books are both set in the same geographic area. Freckles is about a young adult orphan's job on the railroad which requires him to walk through swamps, which he finds terrifying, before he becomes interested in nature, and his own developing self awareness (including religious awakening). The main character of Limberlost is a young woman named Elnora who starts catching and selling moths to Bird Woman in order to fund her high school education, which her bitter mother opposes. Freckles and his wife are sort of guardian angels to Elnora, but they don't play a major role otherwise in the book.  Girl of the Limberlost is, to me, about a girl fighting for her education, creatively funding her life, an impressive respect for her dreadful mother, and ultimately has a nice resolution. I should reread it and see how it "reads" now. [ETA: It resonates/resonated more with me than Understood Betsy, which has also received rave reviews on this board. I think she is a much more complex character in a more complex situation. I think Betsy is popular because it has a more dynamic environment for her to live in, and is perhaps inspiring for educators.]

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I started Freckles, but it seemed so very slow, that I quit reading it. Later, I started Limberlost and really liked it, but found the references to Freckles to be irritating, not having read that book. So I went back and finished Freckles and really enjoyed it once I got past the slow start! Then went back and finished Limberlost, which I really liked as well. Both great books. Just be prepared for Freckles to have a slow start.

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My apologies for digressing further from OP's request...but I have to add that I didn't particularly like Limberlost (though maybe I was prejudiced against it b/c I watched & didn't like the Focus on the Family video before reading the book) - and I hadn't heard of Freckles before this post...but I *loved* Laddie! :) Such a sweet, beautiful story! :)

 

Anyway, I would definitely second The Secret Garden.

 

Also, (not sure if these are exactly what you're looking for, OP...)

Island of the Blue Dolphins (sort of a Robinson Crusoe book about a girl...with a melancholy air)

Big Red (don't know if I'd call this 'beautiful' literature)

The Trumpet of the Swan???

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Gene Stratton-Porter wrote other novels that you might want to consider.

 

Nature-related fiction that I might add to the list:

  • Rascal by Sterling North
  • The Yearling by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings
  • Where the Lillies Bloom by Bill & Vera Cleaver (but probably not with an 11 year old, hmm...)
  • Owl Moon by Jane Yolen

Books about naturalists that we like:

  • Miss Lady Bird's Wildflowers by Kathi Appelt
  • For the Birds: The Life of Roger Tory Peterson by Peggy Thomas
  • The Boy Who Drew Birds: A Story of John James Audubon by Jacqueline Davies
  • Rachel Carson and Her Book that Changed the World by Laurie Lawlor

Smithsonian's Backyard series

 

http://wellreadchild.blogspot.com/2008/07/smithsonians-backyard.html

 

 

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Another vote for The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate.  That is one of our all-time favorites around here!

 

 

I've never even heard of Limberlost, but I am currently reading Evolution of Calpurnia Tate with my oldest and I absolutely adore it!

 

We checked it out at the library, had to take it back, so just bought our own copy so we can keep reading it.

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I've never even heard of Limberlost, but I am currently reading Evolution of Calpurnia Tate with my oldest and I absolutely adore it!

 

We checked it out at the library, had to take it back, so just bought our own copy so we can keep reading it.

 

I've given this as a birthday gift to several 11-12 year old girls . . . 

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Oh, it's not really nature related, but Totto-Chan might be a good read for her at some point, even if you don't get to it this upcoming year. It's a biography about a girl growing up in Japan, attending a very unusual school. I believe they had a garden they had to tend, and nature-based field trips. 

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