All the Things

A blog by Holly Papa.

A Long Way From Chicago by Richard Peck

by | Apr 7, 2009 | Blog | 5 comments

A Newberry Honor book

long-way-from-chicago1I read this book after first finding and reading its sequel, A Year Down Yonder. This is a great family read-aloud, or car-trip audio. Joey and his sister Mary Alice spend a week every summer visiting their Grandma Dowdel. Why the parents never come for a visit becomes apparent when you find out the quirks and looming domination that are Grandma Dowdel. Any daughter-in-law would be petrified and find good reason why only her children needed to visit.

Peck has you in stitches with the antics of Grandma Dowdel as she works her own form of vigilante justice. Dead mice find their way into milk bottles to get the best of bad milk boys. The funeral she gives in her own parlor for a dead-beat makes me shiver as I write about it now. The State Fair gooseberry pie contest made me glad that I haveĀ  no interest in the politics of food judging. And the airplane ride at the end, was just the icing on the cake! This book stands on its own two feet as does the sequel and I highly recommend them both.

Look for our double scoop review coming later this week on A Year Down Yonder.


  1. pusserboots

    I’ve read some of Peck’s short stories and A Long Way from Chicago is on my TBR pile for this year. Thanks for the review!

  2. Melissa

    I absolutely adored this book and its sequel. One of the best humorous reads I’ve ever found.

  3. Janelle

    I really need to read one of his books. Thanks for the reminder.

  4. hollybookscoops

    pusserboots- I haven’t yet read any of Peck’s short stories, but have been very impressed with the books I have read. I hope you enjoy ALWFC!

    Melissa- I agree. These books, even though they portray hard times, give you every reason to laugh and laugh. I find that very helpful, especially to counteract the doom and gloom we hear about so often these days.

    Janelle- Check one out, and you will be hooked! It’s so worth it!

  5. caribookscoops

    We, meaning my husband and I, listened to this book on tape (yes I still have a tape deck in my car). Anyway we really enjoyed it. Peck is on the top of my favorite authors list.



  1. Summer Reading Is Here! « Bookscoops - [...] A Long Way From Chicago, A Year Down Yonder & On Wings of Heroes all by Richard Peck, one…

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.