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Phyllis Reynolds Naylor is the author of more than a hundred books, many of which take place in West Virginia. She lives in Bethesda, Maryland. From the Hardcover edition.
Gr 3-5-It's summer and while Wally Hatford would rather sit around and watch a spider weave its web, he agrees to help his brothers. If Jake and Josh can create a historical town newspaper, they will get credit for reading three books on their summer list. As a gesture of good will, since they are 99 percent certain that the Malloy sisters will be returning to Ohio in the fall, they ask the girls to join them. When Eddie declares herself editor-in-chief, the one-upmanship that's a trademark of this series starts. All of the kids have a job on the paper; Wally and Peter are in charge of distribution, Beth investigates a haunted house, the twins write historical sports stories, and Caroline interviews citizens about their ancestors. When Wally asks the owner of Oldakers' Bookstore if he can display copies of the Hatford Herald, he hears a strange noise coming from its basement. Mr. Oldaker promises him a scoop for the paper if he can keep the information a secret. When mistakes are printed in the paper, the girls learn a valuable lesson about fact-checking, and they also learn that the boys will strike if they don't have their own way. Although the characters are mostly one-dimensional, the story has its funny moments. Fans of the series will eat it up.-Tina Zubak, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, PA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.