Three friends spend a summer of fun and discovery in a charming domestic adventure where the saying, 'two's company, three's none' is proved wrong. Illustrated by Prudence Seward.
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Tessa was nearly five, her sister Daffy was eight, and Pete, who had just come to live next door, was six – almost seven. The three made friends almost at once. Eric and Colin, two bigger boys who lived close by, made fun of Pete because he liked Daffy and Tessa, but Pete was tough and stuck to his friendship. When the summer ended and he started at his new school, he would meet other boys and make more friends, but for the moment he was quite content with the girls next door.
They had great fun that summer. Sometimes Pete and Tessa played together, and sometimes it was all three of them. They made masks, went flower-hunting, played Captain and Crew, planted seeds which Catty promptly scratched up again. But they had fun on their own, too: Daffy made a tremendous discovery; Pete made another, quite different, one; but perhaps Tessa made the best of all – for she found that at last she could keep a secret.
"Two's company, three's none", according to the proverb; but for Daffy and Tessa and Pete that wasn't true at all.
1. The Invitation
2. A Chinese Burn
4. A Captain and His Crew
5. Let's Frighten Someone
6. Pete's Bedroom
7. A Really Horrid Day
8. The Poppy Dolly
9. A Discovery
10. The Secret
11. Catty Runs Away
Ruth Ainsworth cannot remember a time when she wasn't writing. She filled many exercise books with stories when she was a child, and it became a life-long habit. She was in her teens when her first book was published. When she lived in a remote village by the sea with her three little sons, she told them endless stories during their walks, and they told her stories too. "Children find magic in the everyday life of play and family," she says. Her sources for her books lie in that belief.
Prudence Seward went to Harrow Art School and then to the Royal College of Art in London. She was awarded the Rome Scholarship in engraving; and on returning to England in 1951, became a freelance illustrator. She has also lived and worked in Canada.
"A charming story of three friends"
"Domestic adventure is Ruth Ainsworth's strong suit and she displays it here, with humour and matter-of-factness. A funny compassionate picture of what it is to live in a family."
Times Educational Supplement