The Cranky Old Reader

I'm a Goodreads refugee, looking for a new home. Old books for children, science fiction, fantasy, mysteries, and humor are my main areas of interest. I've little interest in books that were written after 1975 or so, and prefer books that are older still. There are, however, a few still-living authors that I respect.

Cheaper by the Dozen (Perennial Classics)

Cheaper by the Dozen - Frank B. Gilbreth Jr., Ernestine Gilbreth Carey A truly charming and heartwarming book about the efficiency expert Frank Gilbreth, his wife, and their dozen children - written by two of the children (Frank Jr. and Ernestine).This book was a massive best-seller back in its day. But as time passed, it went out of print and was forgotten and virtually unavailable for many years. I found a copy tucked onto a shelf at a rented vacation cabin on a lake in Maine; the shelves were simply packed with old books, including many issues of Reader's Digest Condensed Classics. Cheaper By The Dozen is not great literature, I suppose. But it's a touching and entertaining window into a time now long gone.Please do not mistake it for the current movies of the same title, which have as little to do with the book as Eddie Murphy's Doctor Dolittle movies have to do with Hugh Lofting's beloved classic books for children.The movies should be forgotten. The book, on the other hand, is still worth remembering and rereading.10/22/2009 - After another re-reading I want to emphasize two things: this is an extremely funny book, and it is also, at the end, a deeply moving one.Also, in my initial review I was unintentionally unfair to Lillian Gilbreth, the mother of the family; she was a distinguished scientist in her own right, and has been honored by the Smithsonian Institution and was featured on a U.S. postage stamp.The sequel was Belles on their Toes, and I'll be looking for it - as well as other books by Frank and Ernestine.

Currently reading

Basic Roleplaying: The Chaosium d100 system (Basic Roleplaying)
Sam Johnson, Charlie Krank
A Paradise Built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities That Arise in Disaster
Rebecca Solnit