Skinner Homestead

Stephanie S. Tolan

The Great Skinner Homestead

Four Winds Press, 1987

What do you do when your thirty-five-foot motor home, Brunhilda, breaks down a million miles from civilization in the Adirondack mountains?  If you're Jenny Skinner's father, you decide that your family of four kids, two parents, and three pets will abandon their vacation plans and settle down right there to homestead for the rest of their lives.  And if you're Jenny Skinner, who's about to turn sixteen, you try to resign yourself to a life without cars, telephones, electricity, and boys.

At first things are just as dismal as Jenny had expected.  Brunhilda sits on land owned by vinegary Minnie Berry, who has agreed to let the Skinners stay for the summer in return for their help around her log cabin.  Help translates as weeding, picking, and snapping enough green beans to feed an army, then canning them over a wooden stove in a heat wave.  But life starts to look brighter when a gorgeous college boy decides Jenny's just the girl to share his rattlesnake research.  One look into Stan's blue eyes and Jenny nearly overcomes her loathing of snakes.

One catastrophe follows another in this fourth wildly funny book about the Skinners.  By the end of the summer, every member of the family has a new appreciation for the wilderness - and for the comforts of home.

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Last modified: March 05, 2007