“And away they went. the three together, prancing, leaping, gamboling into the future.” – The Penderwicks at Last, by Jeanne Birdsall
I’ve always loved Jeanne Birdsall. She’s the reason I wanted to become an author. She created characters who feel like my friends. She built a world out of words that seems almost as real to me as reality.
The Penderwicks, a series she wrote about a family of girls and their childhood adventures, was my childhood. I remember reading The Penderwicks at Point Mouette, the third book, in one sitting, and then rereading the whole series again after I finished it. I read those books so much that the covers wore thin and my family made me new ones.
Those books are precious to me and yet I didn’t read this, the final book, until ten months after it released. I spent a long time thinking that maybe I was gonna hate this book, because I knew it wasn’t going to be the ending I wanted. It wouldn’t be perfect. It wouldn’t be the ending I had waited eleven years for.
I finally got around to reading it after buying it at Barnes & Noble on my brother’s birthday. It sat around on my shelf for about a month before I actually opened it. When I did, I fell in love with the Penderiwicks’ world all over again. They are all pure magic. And this one was no different. It was full of warmth, adventure, love, and laughter. The story was just what it should have been. The ending, though it wasn’t what I had wanted for so long, was perfect. It was what it needed to be.
I suppose this is less a review for The Penderwicks at Last and more of an observation of where I am right now. I’m starting college this fall, I have a job, and I can drive. I’m an adult, I guess, but I still feel like a kid.
This last book came at the perfect time for me because for me it represents transition. A transition from childhood into adulthood. Life won’t always turn out the way I once thought it would, but that’s okay. It’s actually perfect, because God is in control, looking farther down the road then I will ever see. He knows where I am, and where I need to be.