Guest Post: Betsy’s Wedding by Maud Hart Lovelace

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Screen shot 2013-05-29 at 9.53.57 AM Today’s Guest Post comes from Tricia, who lives and works–and reads near constantly–in Madison, WI.

Strangely enough for a young girl growing up in the 80’s, Betsy’s Wedding taught me everything I needed to know about love and marriage — although, not sex. To be clear, this is YA from before YA was invented!

Betsy’s Wedding is the conclusion of Maud Hart Lovelace’s beloved Betsy-Tacy series, a ten-book chronicle following a young girl growing up in Minnesota in the early 20th century. While the early books were sweet and very appropriate for young children (especially girls) it’s the final book that holds a special place in my heart.

From the resolution of Betsy and Joe’s “will they or won’t they” romance, to the comical vignettes of learning to cook, to the now-all-too-familiar negoScreen shot 2013-05-30 at 7.30.32 AMtiations of marriage, this book provided a fascinating glimpse into adult life for me.

True to earlier books, Betsy remains a smart, practical heroine. In a surprisingly modern plot line, she struggles to balance the demands of work (her writing) and home. And unlike earlier books , the character evolves even further as Betsy deals with the frightening adult reality of her husband enlisting as the US lurches into WWI – now there’s a war you don’t read much about. All in all, this is a delightful book that offers a compelling look at one young woman’s life in what seems like both a distant past and a very contemporary present.

One more note: you’ll appreciate this book more if you read at least the second half of the series, starting with Heaven to Betsy.

What book taught you something about life that you’ve never forgotten?

6 Responses

  1. Oh, the Betsy-Tacy series taught me so many things about life, and being a writer! Love, love, love these books. I own all of them, yes, with the original, Vera Neville illustrations. One of my favorite scenes in this book takes place early on. Betsy’s father says Joe can’t marry her until he gets a job. So he tells the taxi driver to wait and…Well, you just have to read it. Thanks, Tricia!

  2. Thanks for the great post Tricia. I haven’t read these books but I do love a series where I learn things. I try to glean at least a little something from all the books I read and can’t wait to see what Betsy has to offer.

  3. *Whispers* I haven’t read any of these books! I have learned a lot of stuff over the years from books–starting with Anne of Green Gables teaching me that you use ipecac if your bosom buddy’s little sister has the croup. And always read the label on your raspberry cordial. Thanks for these great post, Tricia!!

  4. Heaven to Betsy through Betsy’s Wedding are some of my very favorite reading memories. I learned about opera from them, for one. And the evils of sororities! 🙂

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