This is a book which many children will enjoy. A youngest brother, Little Klein, struggles to catch up with his three older brothers. There’s also a dog of character who adopts Little Klein, and a series of small town adventures, culminating in a whopping adventure that young readers will envy. The writing is tight and the word choices stimulating, and it reads as well aloud as silently.
As an adult reader I did find it a little “soggy with nostalgia” and, for all the excellent writing, rather twee in places. The harking back to the “good old days” and the myth of the perfect paradise of a 1940-50s small town America is laid on with a hand that’s just too heavy at times. And I found nothing “good old days” about young hoodlums shoplifting, joyriding and breaking into houses. Teenagers doing that were regarded as a darned nuisance then, just as they are now. However, for American readers, this seems to be part of the Mark Twain/Tom Sawyer myth/legend and therefore acceptable, in stories, as the roguish behaviour of boys.