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Here Lies the Librarian

3.73  ·  Rating details ·  3,425 ratings  ·  593 reviews
Peewee idolizes Jake, a big brother whose dreams of auto mechanic glory are fueled by the hard road coming to link their Indiana town and futures with the twentieth century. And motoring down the road comes Irene Ridpath, a young librarian with plans to astonish them all and turn Peewee’s life upside down.This novel, with its quirky characters, folksy setting, classic cars ...more
Hardcover, 160 pages
Published April 20th 2006 by Dial Books
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Average rating 3.73  · 
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 ·  3,425 ratings  ·  593 reviews

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Aug 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I got to know the author Richard Peck from A long way from Chicago and A year down yonder and The teacher's funeral. Loved these books and this one is no different. Fun & quirky and 'darn' entertaining. Around 3.8. Have to select a new Richard Peck from his considerable list of books for next year.... Fun! Great distraction from the 'heavier stuff'. 'Quirky characters, folksy setting, deliciously wicked comedy, classic cars and hilariously larger-than-life moments'.... vintage Peck that is! Cute ...more
Feb 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
When a twister touches down in a small Indiana town in 1914, it sets off a strange chain of events.

Though the old library building stood abandoned, the storm broke out the front window. But the only book known to escape was Tales from the New Testament Retold for the Littlest Christians. It sailed down the street to knock the sign off the pool hall. Certain local elements said it was the hand of providence.

Now, that library had been closed since the formidable librarian, Electra Dietz, had died
Kimberly Francisco
Jun 08, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Kimberly Francisco by: my mother
This is a great little book that I breezed through very quickly. It's an historical fiction set in early 20th century USA, when the automobile was just beginning to make its mark. After the old librarian dies in a twister - "Heaven stamped her overdue" - four new librarians from Butler University show up to take her place and bring some excitement to the town. The story is narrated by 8th grader Peewee McGrath and is set in a rural town in Indiana, a place so small it doesn't even have its own n ...more
May 29, 2011 rated it liked it
Richard Peck loves librarians. Librarians love Richard Peck. I think that he wrote this book to dispel the notion that all librarians are mean, dowdy, and old. That description applies to the old librarian whose grave is shown on the cover (with a gravestone that says Shh!).

A small town in Indiana is shamed into hiring a new librarian, and ends up hiring three -- they come as a package deal with the money that will pay for them. These three librarians are educated, kind, and beautiful, and they
Emma Jane
Feb 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
Another GREAT Richard Peck story. (By the way, it's officially official: Richard Peck is my new favorite author.) I loved the quirkiness and old-timey-ness of this one. And it's about librarians, so duh. The only thing that disappointed me is that I wish Jake would have married Irene instead of Grace. I think Irene deserved him. But that's just my opinion.
Rebecca McNutt
Quite a strange story, but I really enjoyed reading it. With its 20th Century nostalgia and witty humor, it's definitely unforgettable.
Jul 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-stars, rtc
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kailey (BooksforMKs)
Sep 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned-books
Jake and Peewee have a run-down country car garage that used to be a livery stable before the Model-T came roaring down the dirt roads of their little town. Jake loves to tinker with the newest automobiles, dreaming of building his own racecar someday, and Peewee is no slouch when it comes to repairing a brake line or patching up a punctured tire. When Irene, the new librarian, comes motoring along in beautiful clothes and an astonishing hat, Jake and Peewee's lives will never be the same.

I fell
Dec 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-star, juvenile-ya
I've yet to read a Richard Peck book that deserves anything less than five stars. The humor is always perfectly timed and finely tuned, every word in just the right place. The characters are endearing and memorable, and I just want to root for every protagonist he creates. In this WWI-era story, he weaves together a tomboy auto mechanic, several elegant wealthy librarians, some redneck bad boys (the Kirbys) and a crazy but loveable couple - the Colonel and Aunt Hat. From the start to the finish ...more
Rachael Terry
“‘What, in your opinion, Miss Ridpath, makes a great librarian?’ the judge wondered. Irene pinched off her spectacles. ‘I can only quote the words of Melvil Dewey, of the Dewey Decimal Classification.’ She stood then and began to quote: ‘To my thinking, a great librarian must have a clear head, a strong hand, and, above all, a great heart. And when I look into the future, I am inclined to think that most of the men who will achieve this greatness will be women.’ This brought every woman in the r ...more
Michael Fitzgerald
I found this to be a very weak also-ran when compared to Peck's previous book, The Teacher's Funeral. Crucial elements of the story were predictable - and not believable, to boot. This one isn't about teachers in early 20th century Indiana, but librarians and also incorporates automobile repair and racing. Like the earlier book (and Peck's Illinois books), this has pranks and hijinks and elderly "characters." But I'm not sure how many of these books (certainly those written by Peck) the world ne ...more
May 26, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Here Lies the Librarian, by author Richard Peck, is a coming-of-age young readers story set in rural 1914 Indiana, where women's suffrage and the brass (Edwardian) era of automobiles were the real cat's meow. So if you enjoy the literary combination of women's lib' and racing lore then this book will blow your freaking mind! If you don't find that tour-de-force of genre mixing interesting, well... too bad! Because that's what you get in this thrilling novel!

Peewee McGrath is a 14 year old tom-bo
Jan 02, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: YA readers of any age
Set in pre-WWI rural Indiana, this is the tale of a small town’s pair of parentless youngsters, older brother Jake, in his older teens, taking care of his younger sibling, Peewee. Jake has an automobile service business in a ramshackle shack not from the home he shares with Peewee. Peewee helps in the garage, too, and while their lack of parents is alluded to in a few wistful remembrances of the past, it is not explained in any detail. From a neighboring house, the owners of the former livery st ...more
Dec 17, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: tomboys...and well, anyone
Typical Peck. By which I mean, Typical Greatness. No one pulls off the middle-grade deadpan humor quite like Peck. For example, as the neighbors gather in the storm cellar during a tornado, the protagonist states that at least this time the Colonel (an elderly adle-minded man) was wearing pants. This simple line is sandwiched in with all the rest of the sentences, given no special attention, and yet instantly calls to mind hysterical images of pantless old men flying around in a twister. Pricele ...more
Blaine DeSantis
A cute little YA book about a young girl and her brother in rural Indiana and the things that go on in their life, and the changes brought to their town by a group of young Librarians who arrive from Library Science School at Butler University. It is up an down in terms of plot and could use another 50 pages to properly wrap up the book since everything is rushed to a conclusion.
I found this book in a box of books I had in my home and read it because of and in honor of my daughter who next year
Oct 22, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: teens, reviewed, fiction
From the Newbery award winning author of “A Year Down Under”, comes an uproariously funny tale of classic automobiles, librarians and small town life.

Meet Peewee (Eleanor McGrath) a 14 year old stubborn, courageous and steadfast tomboy. She and her adored brother Jake run a struggling gas station "way out in the weeds." that rivals the bigger, wealthier and underhanded Kirby establishment. All Peewee wants is to work on cars. Jake has big dreams though, and not even a few robberies and set backs
Jan 17, 2016 rated it liked it
A sweet, simple and funny book. This one about automobiles, Indiana and independent females in 1914.
Jun 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Utterly delightful, like everything else that has come from the pen of Richard Peck. The surprise reveal on page 21 made me laugh out loud. PeeWee is a unique and memorable main character, and the four heiress librarians were a riot. The writing is spare but packed with unforgettable details—the cat with the wooden paw, the tornado opening up the graveyard, the skeleton in the tree, the librarian’s epitaph (“Here lies the librarian after years of service, tried and true, heaven stamped her—overd ...more
Natalie Barnes
Jan 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved it. I laughed out loud. It's quirky and fun and I finished in a day. I loved all of the characters.
This is the second book by Richard Peck I've read and it definitely felt like the same style of writing as "The Teacher's Funeral." "I got better and better at being myself because who wants to be everybody else?"
C.J. Milbrandt
Peewee is doing just fine, dressing like a boy, working in her big brother's automotive shop. But then their town sets out to hire a new librarian, and Peewee's whole way of life takes an interesting (if unwanted) turn.
Camie Hillegonds
Feb 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Fun! Basically read this in a day! A quick read that I couldn’t put down!
Feb 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020
Read in 85 minutes. One sitting. What a luxury.
I loved this cute and funny story featuring Eleanor “Pee-Wee” McGrath. Absolutely wonderful.
Aug 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
Read this in an afternoon... Tremendous fun. Incredibly sassy. Full of heart.
May 31, 2011 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Karen GoatKeeper
May 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Exit Miss Dietz, librarian, found under the card catalog with cards clutched in her cold hand. Enter four newly graduated sorority sisters librarians in a little rural town in 1914, a town that wonders whether or not it can afford to pay for a library let alone a librarian.
Meet Peewee and Jake, orphans and proprietors of a garage fixing flats and engines for those driving by who have problems on the rutted rugged dirt roads. Except Peewee is Eleanor and 14, wanting to stay Peewee but wishing to
Rachel Marie
Dec 02, 2014 rated it it was ok
Here Lies the Librarian Book Review This is a bizarre little book and I think the title is very misleading. It has very little to do with librarians and the library but much more about a young girl wanting to be like her older brother.
Peewee has always wanted to be just like her older brother Jack. So much so that people sometimes mistake her as a boy. They run their own auto garage and are ready to become mechanics. Then the new librarian comes to town and their lives are forever changed.
Jul 23, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoy Richard Peck as an author. Like his other books, this tale is funny, sometimes touching, and set in the rural midwest of the past. Peck is a master storyteller. His prose is delightful and there are some good lessons under the humor. The story also includes a surprising twist or two. This was a great one to listen to. I wasn't perfectly pleased with the ending, but it was still good.
Mary Karlee
Dec 11, 2008 rated it really liked it
Before I say anything about the book, I would like to say the title is quite misleading. This is hardly a horror story, but rather, great fiction about small town life watching their world evolve from horse and buggy to the "hard road" and the automobile. I loved the writing style and found the main character easy to identify with. I also liked that this book featured an era that I hadn't known a lot about. Fun story. :)
Aug 09, 2012 rated it it was amazing
From the first line of this book you are automatically hooked. This book takes you back into the world of ninteen fourteen Indiana when automobiles and horses shared the roads and women were seeking suffrage. The main character, Pee-wee, is a fabulous storyteller. She brings her world to life and makes it seem like yesterday, not almost a century ago. A good book for anyone who wants a quick read.
Dec 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
loved it! Always wanted to be a librarian as a kid. This book showed that librarians can be all that and a bag of chips!! ha ha. Little girl is a strong female character I loved to learn about. Enjoyed the "library song" and just the way Peewee talked about everything. Glad she had a good role model of a librarian. Hope that I can do that for children. read for summer reading program 2 hrs
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Richard Peck was an American novelist known for his prolific contributions to modern young adult literature. He was awarded the Newbery Medal in 2001 for his novel A Year Down Yonder. For his cumulative contribution to young-adult literature, he received the Margaret A. Edwards Award from the American Library Association in 1990.

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“In her country drives she had killed more chickens than a hotel kitchen.

I had never been in a crowd this big. I felt like a grain of wheat in a box of rat droppings.

“To my thinking, a great librarian must have a clear head, a strong hand and, above all, a great heart. And when I look into the future, I am inclined to think that most of the men who will achieve this greatness will be women.”

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Pride strengthens a woman, but weakens a man.”
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