From the Mixed up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg

This is a book that I remember seeing a lot when I was in Grade School at the LRC, but I don’t know why I never got around to reading it. Maybe it’s because of the long title, haha, or maybe it’s because the cover isn’t appealing to kids.

Most people have probably had dreams of running away (if they didn’t actually run away) as they were growing up. Haha, I remember I used to plan my escape when my siblings ganged up on me, or when I got scolded (except I couldn’t stand the thought of roaming around on the streets in rags, with matching gunky hair and kariton). I think this is why I liked this book so much, because it’s a story about two kids who run away and actually succeed at it.

The book has a Home Alone quality to it, except that they’re at a museum and there are no bad guys, but they do have a mystery to solve.

I loved that of all places that Claudia and Jamie could run away to, it was at the Metropolitan Museum of Art… Now if only we had a museum like that, maybe I’d have run away a long time ago. Haha, Jamie reminded me a lot like my brother, because he was the money shark and like Claudia, I used to be the brains that thought up ways of getting us into trouble when we were kids (uh, like the brilliant idea to polish the parquet with baby powder! boy, did we get punished for that!).

The characters are endearing, and I love that the book shows how smart kids can be, in a way adults would never expect.

There’s an old movie version (1973), with Ingrid Bergman as Mrs. Frankweiler, and a 1995 TV movie with Lauren Bacall as Mrs. Frankweiler. I wonder if I’ll ever get to watch those; I think the book makes for a really fun movie.

My copy: mass market paperback, wanting to be upgraded haha

My rating: 4/5 stars

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