Henry Huggins by Beverly Cleary: Summary & Series

Instructor: Abby Federico

Abby has taught elementary special education and has her master's degree in this area.

This lesson will summarize one of Beverly Cleary's most popular books,''Henry Huggins.'' It will also discuss the other five books Cleary wrote about the main character, Henry, and his many adventures.

Henry Huggins

Have you ever felt like you were living a boring, ordinary life? Well, in the book Henry Huggins, the main character, Henry, feels the same way! That is, until he finds and rescues a stray dog. Then, his life takes an exciting turn for the better.

When Henry finds him, the dog is so skinny that his ribs are sticking out. That's why Henry decides to name the dog Ribsy. Henry and Ribsy become best friends, and go through many adventures in the book. Just a few of the adventures include, sneaking Ribsy onto a bus (where there are no dogs allowed!); attempting to get out of having to participate in a school play; and trying to save up money for a lost football. Henry has to overcome a problem when a boy comes to his neighborhood and says Ribsy is his dog! Henry and the boy decide to let Ribsy decide which boy is his real owner, and you will be glad to know that Ribsy chooses Henry!

Beverly Cleary, author of the Henry Huggins series
Beverly Cleary

There's More!

Luckily for us, Beverly Cleary decided to write more books about Henry Huggins, his friends, and his dog Ribsy. Henry Huggins was the first book in the series, and here are the rest of them (in order).

Henry and Beezus: This book is about more of Henry's adventures, and this time, his good friend Beezus Quimby helps him with a big problem. Henry has his eye on a new bike, but his family can't afford it. Henry needs to come up with the money himself and tries various things from trying to sell bubble gum he found on the street, to delivering papers. He runs into problems at every turn, until Beezus has a perfect idea to help him get the money for the new bike.

Henry and Ribsy: In the third Henry Huggins book, Ribsy is back to his mischievous ways. He is always getting into trouble, from chasing cats to eating ice cream cones that don't belong to him. When Henry wants to go with his dad on a fishing trip, his dad says he can go…but only if he can keep Ribsy out of trouble for two months!

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