At an early age I stumbled upon Penrod and Booth Tarkington.

Reading everything I could and re-reading and re-reading, I must have read the Penrod books probably 200 times.

I read very quickly and my first valuation of a book is whether or not it weighs enough.

So, I kept Penrod: His Complete Story checked out of the library nearly constantly.

Occasionally, I'd return it for a day or so to see if my sister would snatch it off the shelf (she being nearly as enraptured).

If it sat for more than a day or so, I'd grab it again.

Hey… I gave her a chance, at least!

I think that between the two of us we must have had an un-broken string of dozens of check-out cards with only our two names on the cards.

(for those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about with cards and check-outs, I'm sorry you can't follow this part.)

Here's a link to the author on wikipedia. In his day, Tarkington was as popular as Mark Twain.

The Penrod stories were written about a precocious, and most likely a dead center average high-spirited boy in Indiana in and around the year 1910.

It is a most remarkable literary time capsule.

I find Tarkington more entertaining and I appreciate more his depiction of a more 'modern' time frame that I found more accessible in my imagination since 3 of 4 of my grandparents would have been more or less contemporary to Penrod in and about 1910.

Here is something that may help to orient you to the milieu of the America of 1910.

I may or I may not expand on this later. There are certainly many more words I can use but my time is limited and it certainly isn't increasing...

/America 1910
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