This first book in the Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place series is a delightfully clever
comedy of manners that spoofs Victorian society and will likely remind readers of Lemony
Snicket’s Series of Unfortunate Events.
Penelope Lumley, recent graduate of the Swanburne Academy for Poor Bright Females, is
terribly excited to begin her new life as a governess. Having landed her first-ever job tending
the children of the rich and well-regarded Lord and Lady Ashton, she has dreams of teaching the
youngsters romantic languages, mathematics, and horsemanship, all with a firm but loving hand.
Penelope soon discovers that her new position will not be quite what she pictured, however.
Instead of conjugating verbs, she is saddled with the responsibility of caring for three children
who were quite literally raised by wolves.
Discovered in the forest by Lord Ashton, Alexander, Beowulf, and Cassiopeia Incorrigible are
completely drooly and unkempt wild things, and Penelope is tasked with civilizing them in
preparation for their formal presentation at the Ashton Christmas party. The three children turn
out to be very bright and eager pupils, working very diligently to learn English, recite poetry,
and rid themselves of their tendency to chase squirrels and howl. With the party approaching,
though, Penelope and the Incorrigibles find themselves in the midst of a mystery that they simply
must try to solve before they tumble into a dangerous situation.
Full of wit and plenty of tongue-and-cheek humor, this one is a winner for older readers, and the
younger set will enjoy listening along as well. 288 pages. Ages 9-13
Recommended by Molly Crumbley, Librarian Maryland