Terry’s Best Term by Evelyn Smith

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This is a gentle school story from the 1920s, in which not much actually happens … but, somehow, it doesn’t need to happen.   None of the pupils turn out to be the long-lost daughters of dukes, no-one gets caught in a blizzard, and no-one even scores a dramatic last minute winner in a lacrosse match.  In fact, there aren’t any sports events.  Or concerts.  And there aren’t really many lessons.

The main point of the story is that Terry (Teresa) wants to make friends with Julia, the new girl who’s moved in next door and who also attends the same school as her.  Terry’s family live in the Square House and Julia’s family live in the Round House, which sounds like something out of Play School, but never mind.  There’s a fruit sale, and there are a few incidents with Julia’s horse.  And Terry, Julia and Julia’s brother all save up to buy a car together.  As you do.  The two girls are as interested in the mechanics as the boy is, and no-one finds that odd – which is quite impressive, considering that it was deemed a huge big deal in the mid-1980s when Kylie Minogue played a female car mechanic in Neighbours!  Oh, and, at the end, there are some burglaries, but the police rapidly apprehend the burglar, and all his victims are immediately reunited with their stuff.

It sounds boring, but somehow it isn’t.  It’s just nice and gentle.

 

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