I just finished reading Penrod to my kids. To say that we loved this book is an understatement, we LOVED this book!! It is so odd and so funny.
Penrod is written by Booth Tarkington, published in 1914. Penrod is an 11 year old boy, living in Indiana, who gets into a lot of trouble. It is seriously hilarious with some of his misfortunes.
My husband remembered this book when he was kid, so I tried to read it to our kids years ago, but I felt like I was reading a foreign language and decided not to read it. My husband kept telling me how much he loved this book, so I decided to try it again. I am so glad that I did!
My sister in law said they read it with a dictionary to look up some of the big words he used. Once you start reading it, it becomes easier and easier to get through. Here is an example of some of his writing: "Penrod sat morosely upon the back fence and gazed with envy at Duke, his wistful dog. A bitter soul dominated the various curved and angular surfaces known by a careless world as the face of Penrod Schofield."
Here are my disclaimers: Penrod writes a story, and in his story he uses curse words. Except he doesn't dare write them so he puts in a dash. Here is an example (he spells the words incorrectly while Penrod is writing), "Mr. Wilson stagerd back vile oaths soilin his lips for he was in pain Why you --- --- you sneered he I will get you yet --- --- you Harold Ramorez" I would say "bleep" when I read it to the kids, they thought it was very comical. Also, an African American family move in by them. Penrod really likes the kids and they are friends, but they use the "N" word a few times in the book. I simply skipped over that.
There are a few more books in the series, but I heard they weren't as good. I am still on the fence whether or not to read the other ones.