Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh

Harriet the Spy - Louise Fitzhugh

I grew up watching the Harriet the Spy movie that was made by Nickelodeon and I loved that movie. I love all the morals and lessons it taught kids. I even loved how Harriet grew as a character. I especially loved how Harriet always loved to write. In fact, she inspired me to keep my own personal journal when I was six and I've been keeping one ever since. So, naturally, I've always wanted to read the source material and see how they compare. Because, usually, I tend to enjoy the book more than the movie. However, this is one of those rare cases where I enjoyed the movie way more than the book.


In fact, I hated the book! There's nothing about this book that I enjoyed. The writing is not for me at all. I felt it was very bland. Fitzhugh fell victim to telling the reader what was happening instead of showing. I was not taken in by the writing at all. The characters were horrendous because they could be. Harriet, throughout the entire book, is a rotten brat only because she could be. The amount of times she said she wishes for someone's death is astronomical! She was completely horrible to people, even to her best friends, because she wanted to be. No reasons were given for her horrible behavior. She just felt like being a jerk. And the story is no better. Where I felt in the movie gave Harriet a goal, and hardships where she learned her lesson and she was genuinely sorry for the things she did, the book contained none of that. She never once felt bad for what she did and she continued to be horrible to the very end.


This book really frustrated me because it went no where. There was no character development, no story that moved forward, nothing. I was bored and angry and disgusted whilst I read this. This is a book I can't recommend. It's not the kind of "story" I enjoy reading and if you're going to read this or if you know a child who is going to read this, make sure you take into consideration the nastiness that's within this book and it's made clear to whoever is reading this that this is no way to act in life. Kindness, generosity, and caring gets you a lot further in life than being mean-spirited because it's the "truth." ...I really didn't like this book.