Book Guide

Mary Emma & Company is a family affair: Mother, 13-year-old Ralph who is the man of the family, and his two brothers and two sisters. Forced by their father's death to leave the home ranch in Colorado, the penniless Moodys move across the continent to Massachusetts to begin a new life.

This the humorous, heartwarming account of their private war for independence, a war against poverty and sometimes against well-meaning relatives and friends who occasionally intrude on the family unity. It chronicles the daily defeats and victories in the long struggle to keep the family together in its own home.

Ralph, busy with school and his afternoon job at the grocery store, finds a house Mary Emma & Company can afford. Then comes the task of cleaning, painting, and repairing, and desperate midnight battles with the tired old furnace. Much help, and a little hindrance, from neighbors and kin add to the fun and suspense. Mary Emma builds a business for herself; Ralph finds a new source of income and backbreaking labor through a fire and a flood tide; and little by little, with everyone helping, the battle is won.

Mary Emma & Company is the true story of a family that stayed together and lived happily despite tremendous obstacles. Ralph Moody brings humor, pathos, and insight to this delightful account of his growing up. Those who have enjoyed Little Britches, The Home Ranch, Man of the Family, and The Fields of Home will welcome this new chapter in the lives of the people they have come to know and love.

From the dust jacket
Ralph Moody

Ralph Moody

1898 - 1982
American
Ralph Moody was born in 1898 in East Rochester, New Hampshire, and is descended from a family which settled in Massachusetts in 1633. A good deal of... See more
Tran Mawicke

Tran Mawicke

1911 - 1988
American
See more

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Mary Emma & Company Reprint

Mary Emma & Company
Reprinted in 2023 by Purple House Press
Available formats: Hardcover
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Reviews

Plumfield and Paideia

Little Britches #4: Mary Emma and Company
Reviewed by Sara Masarik
The Moody family strictly believes in hard work, integrity, and faithful adherence to Godís principles. The moral character of their family is awesome to behold, especially in true adversity. While Mary Emma struggles to find meaningful employment, the family is perplexed. They do not want to slip into dependence on generous family members. Instead, they struggle to find work and housing as quickly as possible. Everything in Massachusetts, however, is different from Colorado. And, in many ways, harder.

Read the full review on Plumfield and Paideia