Five Little Peppers and How They Grew
(CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, July 7, 2014)
Five Little Peppers and How They Grew by Margaret Sidney. Complete Edition. Top 100 Childrens Books. The Five Little Peppers book series was created by Margaret Sidney from 1881 to 1916. It covers the lives of the five children of Mamsie and the late Mister Pepper who are born into poverty in a rural "little brown house." The series begins with the Peppers in their native state and develops with their rescue by a wealthy gentleman who takes an interest in the family. The Five Little Peppers and How They Grew tells how the Peppers live, learn, and play in their little brown house. They are poor, and Mamsie must work constantly to keep the wolf from the door, but their lives are unexpectedly happy. They make do with whatever they have and the older children help the younger ones. They bear bad times as best they can and make the most of the good times. When Phronsie is kidnapped by an organ grinder, she is rescued by young Jasper King and his dog Prince, both of whom soon become fast friends with the Peppers. The family so charms Jasper and his father that one by one they are invited to visit the Kings' home in the city and soon the entire family is living there. Mr. King makes Mrs. Pepper his housekeeper and does everything in his power to entertain and educate the children. Though the Kings surround the Pepper children with luxury--in 5 years Phronsie collects 200 dolls--the values of hard work, humility, and togetherness are still firmly enforced by their mother. This puts them in a curious position in society. Though they live with an upper-class father and son, the older children are aware they’ll someday work for their livings. This makes them willing to befriend anyone, from street girls to grocers’ sons. The stories continue with the Peppers' adventures in school, abroad, and even back in the little brown house where their thoughts and hearts will always turn. The series spans 17 years, beginning with Phronsie as a three-year-old and finishing with her as a 20-year-old young lady.