“And now, Katy, it's your turn. Tell us what you're going to be when you grow up.”
“I’m not sure about what I’ll be,” replied Katy; “beautiful, of course, and good if I can. That’s what I’d like to be. But now I’ll tell you what I mean to do...’
Tomboyish Katy Carr is tall, gangling, and full of mischief. Constantly scheming and playing with her brothers and sisters, 12-year-old Katy dreams that one day she will be ‘beautiful and beloved, and amiable as an angel’. But goodness and obedience don’t come easily to Katy, who had promised to be a good stand-in mother to her younger siblings but finds it difficult to stick to her word. When her bedridden cousin Helen comes to stay, Katy becomes enchanted with her as the living embodiment of goodness and light. On the day Helen leaves, Katy devotes herself to be a shining example of Helen’s behaviour. But quickly the best of intentions go awry, and a day of mischief ends in an accident: a serious fall from a swing that seems to threaten Katy’s grand hopes for the future. But by focusing on the good humour and strength she witnessed in Helen, Katy eventually learns to overcome her difficulties in the ‘School of Pain’, and to practice strength, patience, and hope.
Originally published in 1872, and often paired with The Secret Garden and Pollyanna, What Katy Did is the classic American tale of childhood, love, hope, and ‘doing good’.
Katy Carr’s big dreams and desire for adventure are at odds with what is expected of her by her widowed father and the family’s caregiver, Aunt Izzie. As a twelve-year-old girl, she is expected to help in the household and to set an example for her brothers and sisters, something that the mischievous Katy finds nearly impossible to do.
But when her disobedience results in a terrible accident, Katy finds herself confined to her bed. Frustrated and at odds with her family, Katy must learn to make the best of things or risk driving her family away just when she needs them the most.
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Katy Carr intends to be beautiful and beloved and as sweet as an angel one day. For now, though, her hair is forever in a tangle, her dress is always torn and she doesn't care at all for being called 'good'. But then a terrible accident happens and Katy must find the courage to remember her daydreams and the delightful plans she once schemed; for when she is grown up she wants to do something grand . . .
A wonderful, family story, with an inspiring introduction from the hugely popular Cathy Cassidy.
***PLUS a behind-the-scenes journey, including an author profile, a guide to who's who, activities and more . . .***
Susan Coolidge (1835-1905) was born Sarah Chauncey Woolsey in Ohio, USA. She worked as a nurse during the American Civil War, after which she started to write. She is best known for her classic children's novel What Katy Did , which was modelled on her own family, and its four sequels: What Katy Did at School, What Katy Did Next, Clover and In the High Valley.
'The Puffin Classics series is a perfect marriage of the old and the new. Enjoy some of the best books from the past and find out why and how they inspired some of the best writers of the present' - Julia Eccleshare, Lovereading4kids
Katy Carr is the longest girl that was ever seen. She is all legs and elbows, and angles and joints. She tears her dress every day, hates sewing and doesn't care a button about being called 'good'. Her head is full of schemes and one day she plans to do something important. But a great deal is to happen to Katy before that time comes...
BACKSTORY: Learn some splendiferous vocabulary and find out which character you most resemble.
During a long period of recovery, Katy learns gentle lessons in behavior from her invalid cousin, Helen, who inspires Katy with her kindness, beauty, and generosity. Determined to become more like Helen, Katy endures physical and emotional pain while learning some difficult lessons in the school of life.
Fans of Little Women and Anne of Green Gables will enjoy reading this unforgettable tale of a spunky heroine who learns patience and responsibility as a teenager growing up in nineteenth-century America.
The immense popularity of What Katy Did upon its publication inspired several sequels, including What Katy Did at School and What Katy Did Next. The book has also been adapted into several TV movies, including one from 2009 starring Allison Pill and Michael Cera.
HarperPerennial Classics brings great works of literature to life in digital format, upholding the highest standards in ebook production and celebrating reading in all its forms. Look for more titles in the HarperPerennial Classics collection to build your digital library.
Likened to Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, What Katy Did Next is a timeless classic for both children and adults to enjoy.
The story of Katy Carr, the lanky, good-hearted tomboy who learns to be gentle and patient, is continued in this third instalment of Susan Coolidge’s popular Katy series. When Mrs Ashe, a widower, discovers that her visiting nephew has scarlet fever, she sends her only daughter Amy to stay with the Carr family. Amy finds a true friend in Katy Carr, and Mrs Ashe invites Katy to join them on a trip to Europe. After some initial reluctance, she agrees.
We follow Katy as she is reunited with her old friends from Hillsover, including the mischievous Rose Red Browne. Katy’s journey takes her to rainy England, where she finds out what constitutes a ‘fine day’ for the English and what a Dickens-commended muffin tastes like. The Carr family from her most popular Katy series was modelled on Coolidge’s own family, with the protagonist Katy modelled on Coolidge herself.