The Last Great Adventure of the PB&J Society ~ By: Janet Sumner Johnson

The Last Great Adventure of the PB&J Society 5 Stars

Some things are better together. Like peanut butter and jelly. Or Annie and Jason. So when her best friend’s house is threatened with foreclosure, Annie Jenkins is bursting with ideas to save Jason’s home. She could sell her appendix on eBay. (Why not?) Win the lottery. (It’s worth a shot!). Face the evil bankers herself. (She’s one tough cookie, after all.) Or hunt down an elusive (and questionably real) pirate treasure. Whatever the plan, it has to work, or this is undoubtedly THE LAST GREAT ADVENTURE OF THE PB&J SOCIETY.

How many ways can a 10 year old girl come up with to earn enough money to keep her best friend from moving? As it turns out, a lot. She could win the lottery, have a bake sale, or …. find pirate treasure? From plan A to plan E Annie never gives up on her goal. She is a determined, hopeful girl, who is sure to amuse and delight the reader, especially throughout the many messes she finds herself in.
One of my favorite parts was when she and Jason were sentenced to clean out the turkey pen. See, Jason’s father keeps a herd of turkeys in their backyard, and Annie is deathly afraid of these creatures. Jason, being the good friend that he is, locks them in their house before they begin to clean. But he missed one, and it landed on Annie’s shoulder, causing her to panic, which caused many more problems, eventually ending with the backyard being flooded, which is a problem much more serious than it would seem on the surface to be.
This book is quite a bit of fun in the beginning, and as it goes on it becomes less cheerful and more meaningful. As Annie continues to try to find a plan that will succeed in keeping Jason from moving, time keeps moving on and they are getting closer and closer to the day when his house would sell. She learns things along the way, things about people and their struggles, about not judging people before you truly know them, and she learns that sometimes you can’t fix your problem; sometimes you must make the best of a terrible situation.
And there are some serious situations that the characters went through. For example, Jason’s family has no money; the bank is about to take their home away and they’ve been living off a garden in their back yard and slaughtering their herd of turkeys for food.
In the beginning of the book Mrs. Schuster, the neighbor of the two children, is that one old lady who screams at children to get off of her lawn and takes away their toys if the things are in her yard or causing the children to make a mess. But then she invites Annie and Jason over to visit her, and even though Annie would probably rather clean the turkey pen than go for a visit, she is forced by her mother to accept the invitation. Mrs. Schuster then tells the two about the Pirate Captain, Black Marge, who is an ancestor of hers and who buried treasure somewhere nearby….
Mrs. Schuster is really a wonderful character, she is sweet and fun, wanting nothing more than to play games and battle off imaginary pirates with Annie and Jason. The addition of her character gave the book a lot of heart.
Mrs. Schuster is one who also went through a difficult situation. A before the story takes place, Mrs. Schuster had hired a private detective to find the daughter that she had been forced to put up for adoption, after the 17 year old Mrs. Schuster had to leave what was referred to as an abusive marriage. However, once her daughter is found, it is learned that the girl has no desire to have any contact with her mother. I mention this because it is the only thing that I could think of in the book that a parent may want to know about before giving this to their child to read.
I loved all the characters, and enjoyed their relationships with each other. I enjoyed seeing them work through the good and the bad of life. This really was a heartfelt story full of humor and situations that make you smile. I would definitely recommend this.

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