Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Rufus M. (The Moffats, #3)” as Want to Read:
Rufus M. (The Moffats, #3)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Rufus M.

(The Moffats #3)

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  1,513 ratings  ·  74 reviews
You've never met anyone quite like Rufus Moffat. He gets things done, but he gets them done his way.
When he wants to check out library books, Rufus teaches himself to write...even though he doesn't yet know how to read. When food is scarce, he plants some special "Rufus beans" that actually grow...despite his digging them up every day to check on them. And Rufus has frien
Paperback, 256 pages
Published April 1st 2001 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published 1943)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Rufus M., please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Rufus M.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.98  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,513 ratings  ·  74 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Mar 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I really loved reading about the antics and adventures of the youngest Moffat. The perspective of a child this age seemed right on target to me. A truly fun classic for young readers.
Grace Lin
Dec 30, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This book was another great classic which has held up well. Rufus is such a likeable character and the episodic adventures were extremely fun & charming!
One of my happiest academic moments was when I persuaded a professor of economics to let me write a paper in which I combined economic theory (of which I knew nothing), several old books by Horatio Alger that must have belonged to my great-grandfather, and the first chapter of Rufus M where he gets his library card (it is the best chapter of the book).
I really enjoyed reading this classic. It’s strange to categorize this book as such since it was first written in 1943. Rufus’ various escapades always managed to bring a smile to my face! I learned quite a bit about life during the early 1900s during WW1 as well. The way people bonded together and supported the troops overseas was truly heartening 💕.

I enjoyed this book in little bursts rather than trying to read it all in one sitting. Some books are meant to be savored and this is definitely o
Feb 20, 2012 rated it it was ok
Although in general I am a great fan of classic children's books, I found this one to be difficult to follow and impossible to engage a similarly aged child with. Too many years have passed and too much has changed for today's young child to enter into Rufus' world. And to our great good fortune, there are now so many excellent books for any age and taste, we have the luxury of moving on rather than focusing on past eras of children's literature. I would have loved to introduce my son to Rufus, ...more
Astrid Lim
Oct 09, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: children, newbery, rent
Cute little story of Rufus M, the clever/naughty little boy who lived with his family in Connecticut during the war time. The stories are simple yet engaging, a kind of story I would be happy to read to my boy =)
Feb 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
Dear sweet Rufus. He is a character. I love his determination (think library card adventures and practicing ventriloquism), his naïveté (think the invisible piano player), and his optimism. He has a series of gentle adventures and you can hardly help but love him.
3.5-4 stars. I liked this book, even loved several chapters, but it was just a little less good than The Moffats and The Middle Moffat. Rufus (M.) is the youngest Moffat, and is both clever and naughty which today would be a dangerous combination. But at the end of WWI when this book is set, that combo only put him in minor peril. Janey continues to be his best friend in spite of the difference in age and sex. The first vignette when he decides to get a library card, a later one when he knits a ...more
Oct 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book. All of the books in the Moffats series have been fantastic so far. I was laughing hysterically during the first chapter at Rufus' escapades and determination in trying to get a library card. Eleanor Estes did a great job of getting into the head of a six year-old and showing what things matter to him and explains how he acts in certain ways (which can be educational having a six year-old of my own). These novels also show how the war affected everyone of all ages and ...more
Sep 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: newberry, 2018
TITLE: Rufus M.
WHY I CHOSE THIS BOOK: It is a Newbery Honor book; and it fit my reading challenge criteria being connected to the book before it, Daddy-Long-Legs, being the same genre juvenile fiction.
REVIEW: I just love Rufus. He reminded me of Anne of Green Gables in that he gets in to mischief unwittingly, has a big heart, and is too bright and inquisitive for his own good. My favorite story was the one where he tries to get a library card. Having worked in many libraries, I could
Jan 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: to-buy, rereadables, 2019
I saw Little Sister had brought this home from the library, was like, "MY CHILDHOOD," and spent a happy afternoon rereading.

It's sweet, wholesome, and /funny/. Eleanor Estes is so good at writing children: their earnest approach to life, their strange convictions acquired who knows how and tenaciously adhered to, their enthusiasms, their disappointments. She gets siblings too--the people you keep secrets both from and with, and for whom you'd do most anything but be polite. She even
Steve Ward
Jan 05, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: newbery-award
I enjoyed this third book in the series a bit less than the first two but it was a good book. The author stayed with a similar theme of youthful innocence surrounding the four children of a family during WWI. Similar to the prior book she concentrated on one of the four kids as her main character rather than spreading the stories amongst all four. Rufus was just not as interesting to me as the other siblings. I'd recommend this book to any reader 8 and older.
May 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mg
I had read this one more recently so was less struck by it than the first 2. But I loved the part where Rufus thinks the player piano is an invisible person. And the part where he gives the washcloth he knitted to the soldier. And of course, the part where he gets his library card is priceless.
Johnny Bennett
Mar 23, 2017 rated it liked it
Rufus M continues the stories of the Moffats as they continue to grow and live through the war. There are some real cultural references that kids will need explained to them, and at this point probably some adults. While well written and involving real history, this is still a children's book and isn't so brilliant to thoroughly entice adults. The last chapter though, that last little vignette, carries a lot of power and symbol with it.
Katie Clark
Nov 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Not much happens in Eleanor Estes books, but I love them anyway.
Who doesn't love a kid who spends the whole day trying to write his name
on a library card so he can check out books? The Fatal Four baseball
team made me laugh out loud. What a sweet book.
May 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
More fun Moffat stories--where the ordinary curiosity and adventures of kids makes for great entertainment. Estes captures the wonder of childhood and the lessons kids learn without being preachy. My five year old enjoys these books.
Rebecca Raeske-Grinch
Sep 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This may have been our favorite of the Moffat books. So many funny stories, but so much to discuss within the chapters. The Moffats are definitely growing up in this one.
Jun 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-to-boys
Not as good as The Middle Moffat, but still lovable.
Ruqayya Siddiqui
May 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It was an amazing, funny, interesting book.
Christopher Raffa
Aug 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Read this with my 9 year old daughter. She loved it.
Mar 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
I liked the last chapter.
Michael Fitzgerald
Nice to spend more time with the family.
Barrette Plett
Mar 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
A really honest, funny book, along the lines of Ramona Quimby - the third-person narrator really captures the child's voice.
Jul 30, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: kids-books
Good read plus loved this illustrations.
David Goetz
Oct 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children, fiction
My 5-year-old gives it five stars--"I loved it." The last chapter, depicting a small domestic scene right at the close of WWII, was actually quite poignant.
Lynette Caulkins
Eleanor Estes certainly knows how to tell entertaining stories from children's viewpoints. This installation of the Moffats series well deserves its Newbery accolade. It's charming and perfect for reading a chapter aloud each night with a youngster, even though it was published in 1944. Cultural differences, such as a young child roving alone to his heart's content, and the absence of cell phones, do not take away from modern enjoyment of these classics.
Cynthia Egbert
Feb 28, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: prospector-loans
When this Moffat family book opened with this dear little lad going through hell and back to get a library card so that he could join his siblings on the step with a book, I just fell in love with him. He did things his way and Ms. Estes captured well the way a child's mind works. I love the Moffats and I am glad for a happy ending for this portion of their lives.
Jan 10, 2012 rated it liked it
I like Eleanor Estes, but this was not my favorite of hers. The vignettes of the youngest Moffat take place during the end of WWI. I admit it was interesting for me to read how people lived in those times, and in many ways how children of today, are much like children a hundred years ago. But I kept thinking that a modern kid would have a hard time with this book. There was no central plot. There was no compelling central character. The book was wholesome, almost to yawndom. The only way I could ...more
Sep 18, 2012 rated it liked it
What a cute little book! My boyfriend told me to read it since his mom read it to him as a child. He said that I might like it since I'm into the Little House on the Prairie series. I thought it was very lovely and I liked how Rufus is so determined to get things done like check out his own library book or give his knitted washcloth to a soldier. Some other parts were unbelievable like how he found fifty-five cents and managed to buy everything his family needed, all by himself. How old is this ...more
« previous 1 3 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Pecos Bill: The Greatest Cowboy of All Time
  • Belling the Tiger
  • Downright Dencey
  • The Windy Hill
  • Bright Island
  • Journey Outside
  • All Sail Set: A Romance of the Flying Cloud
  • The Winged Girl of Knossos
  • The Old Tobacco Shop: A True Account of What Befell a Little Boy in Search of Adventure
  • The Avion My Uncle Flew
  • The Golden Name Day (Golden Name Day #1)
  • The Blue Cat of Castle Town
  • Black Fox of Lorne
  • Frontier Living: An Illustrated Guide to Pioneer Life in America
  • Shadrach
  • The Horsecatcher
  • The Silver Pencil
  • All Alone
See similar books…
Eleanor Ruth Rosenfeld (Estes)was an American children's author. She was born in West Haven, Connecticut as Eleanor Ruth Rosenfield. Originally a librarian, Estes' writing career began following a case of tuberculosis. Bedridden while recovering, Estes began writing down some of her childhood memories, which would later turn into full-length children's books.

Estes's book Ginger Pye (19

Other books in the series

The Moffats (4 books)
  • The Moffats (The Moffats, #1)
  • The Middle Moffat (The Moffats, #2)
  • The Moffat Museum (The Moffats, #4)