Harriet the Spy, Week 4

Welcome to the final discussion of Harriet, the Spy

Did you enjoy the way the book ended? How did you feel about Harriet by the end of the book? I think Harriet is a very complicated character, and it is really hard to root for her sometimes! But, I'm glad she was able to have some redemption by the end of the book. If you want to read about the influence that Harriet has had on other writers, check out this article

At the beginning of this section, we find out that the plan Harriet's classmates had was to build a Spy Catcher's Clubhouse. Did you expect they would do something like that? Do you think they also planned to dump the ink on Harriet, or was that more a spur of the moment decision? I thought the ink was meaner than the clubhouse. The clubhouse was mean because it excluded Harriet, but the ink was so much more public and caused more damage. The Spy Catcher Club parade past Harriet was pretty cold--it's so crazy that kids can make up these cruel schemes. 

I understood why Harriet's parents took away her notebook, but I think having her notebook taken away just made everything worse. Don't you? At least the notebook gave her some sort of outlet or confidant. Were you surprised that Harriet started skipping school once her notebook was taken away? Do you blame her for skipping school? 

I thought it was a good idea for Harriet to go see a psychiatrist, but I don't think their session did much good. I think the letter from Ole Golly is what really turned Harriet around, don't you? What did you think of Ole Golly's advice that Harriet would have to apologize and lie to her friends? Do you think that was good advice? I don't think Harriet really apologized for what she wrote in her notebook. I know she published that piece in the paper where she basically retracted all of her previous statements, but it wasn't very specific or sincere. What did you think? Would you have accepted what she wrote as an apology? 

What did you think of her newspaper column? I really can't believe that the school actually printed it. The things that she talked about were not very nice! She was basically just using the paper like she used her notebook. Are you surprised that the school would allow her to print a gossip sheet as the school paper? I also don't think it was fair that she wrote about the people on her spy route. They didn't ask for their personal business to be spread across the neighborhood. And, they didn't even have any idea that their personal lives were being talked about. I thought that was really sad that she published those details about the people. What do you think about all of the people on her route? Would they be upset to know that a little girl was talking about them to her classmates? 

Were you surprised that Sport and Janie forgave Harriet in the end? I'm glad that they did, but I'm not sure what is really going to change in the future for all of them. I don't think Harriet really learned anything by the end of the book, so I'm guessing she will keep spying and keep making observations about those around her. Do you think she will continue to watch the same people? Do you think she will look to find more people to add to her route? 

What are your final thoughts about the book? Was it enjoyable to read? If you want to know what Harriet did next, make sure to read the next book in the series, The Long Secret. If you'd like to read or watch similar titles that are not part of the Harriet universe, check out this list I created. Make sure to let me know if you watch or read anything on the list!

Before you go, did you know there is a more recent screen adaptation of Harriet the Spy? There is a new animated adaptation on Apple TV+. Check out the trailer below to see if this adaptation looks faithful to the book. 

Thanks for following along this month! Make sure to leave a comment to let me know what you thought of the book. And, make sure to check back again next month as we read Without Remorse by Tom Clancy. I look forward to hearing from you in the comments!