Obsessive Nostalgia Disorder Monday: The Fudge Books

The Fudge books by the great Judy Blume.

I wanted to take a moment and express my appreciation for Peter Hatcher and his inimitable little brother, Farley Drexel, otherwise known as Fudge.  For Sheila Tubman and Jimmy Fargo and Tootsie Hatcher and Turtle the Dog.  For their creator, the fabulous Judy Blume.

My first grade teacher read Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing to our first/second grade combination class.  When I had the same teacher for second grade (non-combinaton), she read it again.  It was still funny.  Mr. Hatcher punishing Fudge for not eating by dumping his cereal on his head.  ("Eat it or wear!")  Fudge's birthday party and his poor, tired mom.  And of course, what happens to Peter's pet turtle, Dribble?

Did you read Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing?  Do you remember when Fudge tried to fly in Central Park?

I read Superfudge when I was in third grade.  It was even funnier to me.  I even loaned my copy to my first/second grade teacher!

Fudge in kindergarten!  The family spending a year in New Jersey!  Beverly the Giraffe-Neck Lady!  Rat Face!

And over summer vacation, I read the book devoted to Peter Hatcher's nemesis, Sheila Tubman.  Sheila on vacation, stuck with dogs and swimming lessons and slam books, her sister Libby cast as Captain Hook instead of Wendy.

There are Fudge books that were published long after I'd outgrown them.  I scored the slipcased hardcover in a bargain bin, so I now had Fudge-A-Mania.  We had to buy the fourth book, Double Fudge, separately.  My 1986 Dell-Yearling copy of Otherwise Known As Sheila the Great is from a used book store.  (Boxed sets containing all five books are now available!)

I read them all to Big Sis.  Twice.  My sense of humor has changed over the years, but it's amazing how funny these books remain to kids.  Judy Blume really knows how to capture childhood, and I admit, I felt a bit like a kid myself, rediscovering the books.  And we discovered the Fudge television series from the mid-1990s on Hulu. Eve Plumb from The Brady Bunch plays Mrs. Hatcher, and Florence Henderson pops up as the grandma.

Superfudge.  E.P. Dutton, 1980.
Fudge-A-Mania.  Dutton Children's Books, 1990.
Double Fudge.  Scholastic, 2002.


  1. Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing is on the kid's summer reading list! The Fudge serie is something new to me. It's great how Hulu has all those videos :D Oh children's literature and juvenile literature is fun to read at any age :)

    1. I loved these as a kid. It's fun watching my girls love them, too! :)

  2. OKEY DOKEY trying to 'simmer down now'.....oh how i loved these books. LOVED Fudge! Loved Sheila! I remember with perfect clarity, how throat and tummy constricted when I read about the turtle....I think I hated that little brother more than Peter did!

    Judy Blume, she's a special beast in literature. I can think of very very few who nailed childhood warts the way she did, back then.

    1. As a kid, it's very upsetting just how badly you feel for Peter after the turtle incident. The adults are only concerned about Fudge at that moment. You really feel for Peter! You're right, Judy Blume just nails those emotions.


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