Ribsy

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Ribsy
Ribsy cover.jpg
First edition
Author Beverly Cleary
Illustrator Louis Darling
Language English
Series none
Genre realistic fiction
Publisher William Morrow & Co.
Publication date
1964
Pages 128 pp
Preceded by Henry and the Clubhouse

Ribsy is the titular character and a children's book by Beverly Cleary. It is the sixth and final book in the Henry Huggins series. Henry plays a minor role in the story, however, as the narrative focuses primarily on his dog, Ribsy.

Sequence of events.

    In this book, the Huggins family has a new green station wagon. Ribsy is not allowed in the car because he will get it dirty. One morning the Huggins family wanted to go to the shopping center. Ribsy, denied a ride, chases it at up to 20 miles per hour, and is finally allowed in more than three blocks away from their house. At the shopping center, Ribsy is left in the station wagon. When a Pomeranian yaps at him he becomes infuriated and jumps out the window. It stats to rain and he wants to go back to the car, but he can’t find it. He is color blind so he just finds a tailgate window open and hops in, and goes to sleep. When he wakes up there is a family with four girls, Zibby, Louanne, Sally, and Lisa, one two month old boy, George, and their parents. They take Ribsy home and give him a lavender smelling bubble bath. Ribsy escapes when they try to dry him off in their car with the heater on. Wandering in search of Henry, Ribsy finds an old lady named Mrs. Frawley. At first she tells him to go away, but when he raises his paw to greet her, she invites him in. She cooks him four eggs, then he sleeps while she goes out to shop for him. She buys him a sweater and a red collar trimmed with rhinestones. She then invites five other ladies her age to her house to show off Ribsy. When the ladies are leaving he escapes. He follows three girls to a school where he sleeps in Mrs. Sonchek’s second grade classroom cloakroom and eats some of the food kids offer him in the cafeteria. He becomes their mascot until he chases Danny Yaxley’s grey squirrel. Ribsy hears screaming and the smells hot dogs coming from a stadium. He tries to get in but a gatekeeper tells him there are no dogs allowed. So Ribsy pretends to be asleep so the man won’t pay attention to him, then Ribsy sneaks past the man. Ribsy sees boys running with a football on a large field and wants to run with them, so he goes down to the field and makes the winning tackle for Zachary Taylor high school. He is caught by Joe Saylor who, pleased at the attention, gets people thinking it was his dog who won the game. Ribsy then decides to follow the boy. The story of the game gets the attention of the Huggins, who attempts to retrieve Ribsy; however he escapes after hearing Henry's voice on the phone and runs off in search of his beloved owner. Later, Ribsy finds Larry Biggerstaff who lives in an apartment building, and happens to have a tennis ball. Larry decides to get him some food, but panics when confronted by his building manager and hides him on a fire escape. There, fortunately, Ribsy is spotted by the Huggins as they drove through the neighborhood in search of him. Mr. Huggins manages to retrieve him from the fire escape with the help of some nearby workmen. Ribsy is finally happily reunited with his real owner Henry.Small text

Setting.

      The story took place in the city, where Henry and his family live. Some of the other places in the story are, Klickitat Street, Henry’s house, the shopping center parking lot, the Dingley car, the Dingley ranch house, a highway, Mrs. Frawley’s house, Mrs. Sonchek’s second grade classroom, Zachary Taylor High School stadium, Joe Saylor’s house, and Larry’s apartment building. It also took place in October present time.    
    

Characters.

    The main character is Henry Huggins’s dog Ribsy. Other characters are Henry, Henry’s mom and dad, The Dingley family which consists of Zibby, Louanne, Sally, Lisa, George, and their mom and dad, Mrs. Frawley, Mrs. Sonchek the second grade teacher, Mr.Woody the principal, Danny Yaxley a second grade student, the gatekeeper for the stadium, Joe Saylor who said Ribsy was his dog for the paper, and Larry Biggerstaff who put Ribsy on the fire escape so the building manager wouldn't find him.Small text

Plot.

    Ribsy wanted to go with the Huggins’s for a trip to the shopping center. When he is left in the car he gets mad at a Pomeranian, jumps out of the car, and gets lost.  Then the Dingley family, Mrs. Frawley, a second grade, Joe Saylor, and Larry Biggerstaff try to keep him as their own. Ribsy escapes from all of them because he knows he must find his real owner Henry. Finally when Larry puts him out on the fire escape the Huggins’s see him from their car. Mr. Huggins retrieves him and Ribsy is finally reunited with Henry.Small text

Authors purpose.

     The author’s purpose for writing this book was to entertain. Beverly Clearly wrote Ribsy to entertain the reader with a story about Henry’s lost dog. She wanted to tell about Ribsy’s adventures while trying to get back to Henry. She wanted us to be able to enjoy a story. Also if you look deeper the story says not to give up.Small text
    

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