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Harriet the Spy [Audiobook, Unabridged] [Audio Cassette]

Louise Fitzhugh , Anne Bobby
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 40.00
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Book Description

Feb. 1 2000
Read by Anne Bobby
6 hours, 56 mins.
4 cassettes

When Harriet Welsch grows up, she wants to be an author. So, she figures it's a good way to practice for her future vocation by writing down everything she sees on her spy route in a secret notebook. You can imagine her horror when the secret notebook is confiscated by her classmates and read aloud! Now Harriet's knee-deep in trouble as the tables are turned on her.

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Product Details

Product Description

From School Library Journal

Grade 3-5-Harriet is determined to become a famous author. In the meantime, she practices by following a regular spy route each day and writing down everything she sees in her secret notebook. Her life is turned upside down when her classmates find her notebook and read it aloud!. By Louise Fitzhugh.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Audio Cassette edition.


A New York Public Library's 100 Great Children's Books 100 Years selection

"This is the book that made me want to be a writer. [Harriet] was the first fictional female character I ever came across who privileged her own truth above the expectations put on her as a little girl."  —Anna Holmes for Bookish.com

“I don’t know of a better novel about the costs and rewards of being a truth teller, nor of any book that made more readers of my generation want to become fiction writers. I love the story of Harriet so much I feel as if I lived it.” —Jonathan Franzen, author of Freedom and The Corrections

"Harriet the Spy bursts with life."—School Library Journal

"The characterizations are marvelously shrewd."—The Bulletin

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Memories from childhood. March 15 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I read this book over and over again as a child, and now have revisited and still love it as an adult!!
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By BeatleBangs1964 TOP 500 REVIEWER
This wonderful book had a strong, female protagonist who was clearly intelligent and eloquent. Harriet eavesdrops, peers through windows and skylights and records her impressions in a notebook. She has regular "spying" stops in the Upper East Side Manhattan neighborhood where she lives. She knows quite a bit about the people in her neighborhood, thanks to her observant nature.
Harriet is a student at the prestigious Gregory School, where she has an assortment of friends -- scientific, aggressive Janie, meek, retiring Beth-Ellen and a fun loving boy called Sport.
When Harriet's notebook falls into the hands of her classmates, problems arise big time. Harriet has a baptism in fire trying to redeem herself in their eyes. Meanwhile, Harriet's nanny is leaving to get married, her formerly disinterested parents are pushing more into her life and lastly, Harriet herself is maturing.
I loved this book so much as a child and do today. This book even inspired me and countless others to keep a notebook. It was a book about the empowerment of a strong female character.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Almost there... Oct. 30 2000
I'm going against the grain by not saying I am completely thrilled by this book. I think the real problems lies in the fact that I read this book as an adult and not a child. Don't get me wrong... Harriet is a great young female character, especially considering the era she was first written in. She's unabashedly smart, clever, creative, independent, goal-oriented, and realistically complex. Her story is believable, and I am sure these are reasons why the book appeals to people. This book is also humorous and very well written.
I guess the only reason this book leaves a slightly bad taste, for me, is that it is lacking in compassion, in real heart. Harriet hurts people through her actions and really does not seem to learn a lesson in the long run. The dangerous lesson I feel I got from this novel isn't about how to treat people, but rather to tell people what they want to hear and to do what you will, just don't get caught.
This story really is worth reading, especially for girls, but I warn that maybe a little supervision is needed to add a little kindness to an otherwise worthy story.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars There's a girl who leads a life of danger March 21 2004
I have a theory about "Harriet the Spy". I suspect that no adult that read this book once (and only once) as a child remembers it correctly. For example, if you had asked me, prior to rereading it, what the plot of "Harriet the Spy" was, I could have summed it up like so: Harriet the Spy is about a girl who wants to be a spy. She spies on lots of different people and writes in a notebook, but one day all her friends read the notebook and none of them like her anymore. That is the plot of "Harriet the Spy". And I would be half right. Surprising to me, I found I was forgetting much much more.
In truth, "Harriet the Spy" is about class, loss, and being true to one's own self. Harriet M. Welch (the M. was her own invention) is the daughter of rather well-to-do socialites. Raised by her nurse Ole Golly until the ripe old age of eleven, Harriet must come to terms with Ole Golly's eventual abandonment. Ole Golly marries and leaves Harriet to her own devices just as the aforementioned tragedy involving her friends and the notebook occurs. The combination of the nurse's disappearance from Harriet's life (leaving behind such oh-so helpful pieces of advice as, "Don't cry", and the like) and the subsequent hatred directed at Harriet by her former friends makes Harriet into a veritable she-devil. A willful child from the start (punishments are few and far between in the Welch family) Harriet slowly spirals downward until a helpful note from Ole Golly gives her the advice she needs to carry on.
So many things about this book appeal to kids. The realistic nature of peer interactions is one. Harriet randomly despises various kids, even before her notebook is read. After making their lives terrible, she eventually has to experience what they themselves have had to deal with.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Fabulous Book June 8 2004
By A Customer
(...) I have read the whole book of Harriet the Spy and as long as long as I live, I will love this book. This is the best book I have ever read, because it has very vivid writing and you can almost hear Harriet thinking and see what Harriet is doing (what everybody is doing). Harriet learns two things: First, sometimes you need to lie to your friends in order to keep them your friends. Second, friends are very important. I could read this book a thousand times more and not get bored with it. I would recommend over 70 people reading this book a month.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Harriet the Spy sparkles May 1 2004
I first knew about Harriet the Spy in 5th grade when the movie came out. I was entranced, enthralled and totally taken with such a moving film (no wonder it's called "One of the best children's movies ever!"), and I bought the book later that week - along with Fitzhugh's sequel The Long Secret. I became a "child spy" like Harriet because I found her lifestyle amazing, and Louise Fitzhugh is an excellent writer. Harriet the Spy sparkles as one of literature's best children's novels!
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars The Little Spy
If you were to look at Harriet M. Welsh you would see a fairly ordinary girl, but she is not. She is a spy. Read more
Published on March 4 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars Greatest book of all !!
Harriet the Spy is an 11 year old girl who keeps painful but true notes in her notebook. Soon her notebook falls into the wrong hands and everyone in her class, even her two best... Read more
Published on March 4 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
This book reminds me of the days when I used to work for good old fidel, destabilizing governments, and being an all around bad guy. Read more
Published on Feb. 4 2004 by Che Guevara
5.0 out of 5 stars a definite best-seller
ok, i must say that this book is possibly the best book i've ever read. i have definitly recommended this story to essentially everyone i know, and most that have read it have told... Read more
Published on Dec 24 2003
3.0 out of 5 stars Quite good
This book is an excellent read for children, the story of Harriet is not one to be missed. She, as a determined spy set for a career in writing, finds herself going through her spy... Read more
Published on Dec 4 2003 by Nikki
1.0 out of 5 stars Serious worldview problems amidst good writing
I just finished listening to this book with our two sons age 8 and 9. The writing style was very descriptive and well developed (with the exception of the conclusion), however the... Read more
Published on Dec 2 2003
5.0 out of 5 stars a life-changing, must-read!
this book blew me away! i read it for the first time at 8 years old. i saw the movie. from then on, i kept a journal in a speckled, black and white composition book! Read more
Published on Aug. 1 2003 by "carly_star"
5.0 out of 5 stars First read it at 12, still love it at 42
Harriet the Spy is an old friend who I come back to even now, so many years later. Harriet helped shape my world. Read more
Published on June 19 2003 by Yasmine F. Galenorn
4.0 out of 5 stars The Sneaky Spy
It is about a girl who is a sneaky spy. She has a notebook that she loves. She has written some mean things about her best friends. Will she ever become friends with them again? Read more
Published on May 21 2003
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