Harris and Me

by Gary Paulsen

Paperback, 1995



Call number

PB Pau

Call number

PB Pau

Local notes

PB Pau




Yearling (1995), 160 pages


Sent to live with relatives on their farm because of his unhappy home life, an eleven-year-old city boy meets his distant cousin Harris and is given an introduction to a whole new world.


Original language


Original publication date


Physical description

160 p.; 5.14 inches

User reviews

LibraryThing member AlWe1021
This was a funny book! It was fun to see what trouble Harris could get into and what adventures they went on. I felt bad for the narrator when he had to leave.
LibraryThing member dlmann
An eleven year old boy of alcoholic parents is passed from relative to relative. One summer he stays with a distant uncle and his family on their farm. This is where he meets Harris and experiences a whole new way of life and new meaning to the word "family". This is also a place he does not want
Show More
to leave.

This is a good book for elementary students. It is an easy read and very enjoyable.
Show Less
LibraryThing member Whisper1
If you are looking for a heartwarming, poignant tale that will make you laugh and cry, then you might want to read this gem.

When studying the author's life, I came across a link that mentioned Paulsen wrote this as an autobiographical tale based on his real life experience of spending a summer on a
Show More
farm in Minnesota with distant relatives.

Both parents were alcoholics and often he was shuffled from one home to another. By the time he was 11 years of age, Paulsen was relocated several times.

Never feeling as though he belonged, the narrator of Harris and Me tells of a magical time one summer when he learned the joys and the hard work of country living.

His distant cousin Harris was more than adventurous, he was indeed a devil may care, seize the moment and grab the gusto kind of person.

This is a magical story of a transforming summer spent with a family that cared and shared.

Paulsen's description of some of the antics were laugh-out-loud funny.

Show Less
LibraryThing member dthensley98
very funny book! you will like this book if you kind of like adventure stories. this book is set back tn the 1900's. harris is a boy that lives on a farm and his cousin comes to live there for the summer. he is from the city, and doesn't know anything about living on a farm. one of my favorite
Show More
parts of this book is when the whole family goes to see a movie in town, and harris's cousin gets a girlfrind and she just so happens to live 3 miles away from him. so instead of walking, harris steales the gasoline engine off of the washing machine. harris took the microchip thingy out of it and it makes the engine run a lot faster and they rig a bike up and put him on it. good book!!!
Show Less
LibraryThing member amybrojo
This is the best book I have read in a while. It's a story for kids before kids needed vampires, zombies, and the end of the world as we know it. The narrator is spending a summer on a farm of a distant relative and we follow his adventures with Harris, a trouble making, dare-devil,
Show More
up-for-anything, swearing, breath of fresh air. You like every one of the characters. They are people you want to know with traits you want to have. The words "play" and "playing" were used so often in this book because that is what these boys do; and you'll want your boys to follow their lead and stop staring at a screen (but you'd never let them because every thing they do becomes a near death experience, and in our day and age we would never allow such freedom.) I laughed out loud at the situations Harris got this kid into. I cried when I was finished and could cry some more now just thinking about it. I loved this book. I recommend it to everyone and can't wait to read it with my seventh graders.
Show Less
LibraryThing member mj113469
An 11year old boy is moved around from family to family because his parents are alcoholics. He finally ends up with the Larson family in the rough country of America. With no TV or any modern type of entertainment Harris and his cousin set out to make their own fun. Such as riding pigs, building
Show More
their own motorcycle out of a washing machine motor and bicycle, and getting attacked by a rooster and cow.

This book is a great book. I enjoy reading books that pertain to living on a farm because I live on a farm. I have always wanted to go back in time and live life like they do. This book is well put together and it keeps you interested.

This book could be used in the classroom to teach children what was like before technology. This book could also be used to compare and contrast their life to Harris’ and his cousin’s life. I would take the children on a field trip to a farm so that the students could experience for themselves how a farm really worked.
Show Less
LibraryThing member stoog
Guys, keep doing whatever the heck you do. Run over Ernie.
LibraryThing member Eyre-32
I loved Harris. He reminds of some of my students who have huge imaginations and noses for trouble. I keep more than one copy on my classroom shelves because all the boys want to read it after I read them the part about the frog. Ew!
LibraryThing member meerka
If you love listening to Tales from Lake Wobegon, I'm positive you'll give this book five stars. Great for any age, probably a joy to read aloud as a family. If you've raised animals or lived on a farm you may enjoy it six stars or more! Interesting to note the level of technology held by this area
Show More
post-WWII. Comments from those people on farms in the late '40s '50s welcome for perspective.
Show Less
LibraryThing member bostonfan
Not at the top of my list but it was still a pretty funny book to read.
LibraryThing member mick123
A funny and good book. Lots of humor.
LibraryThing member crroys
Laugh out loud story of a boy sent to visit his cousins in Minnesota for a summer. Harris drags him into all types of trouble and when he finally has a chance to seek revenge, Harris faces a fearsome foe. You never quite know what is just around the corner with these two and Paulsen keeps you
Show More
laughing whether you are 7 or 70. A great read-aloud if you know your audience and you have previewed it first.
Show Less
LibraryThing member BrookeC4
a book that you never want to put down because it's always at a good part.
LibraryThing member izzy162
This book is freaking amazing.
LibraryThing member michaellancuba
fun very funny carzy farm life
LibraryThing member matthewbloome
This is quite possibly the finest piece of writing that Gary Paulsen ever did. I read this a number of years ago, but I've always been disappointed that I couldn't read it aloud to children thanks in large part to Harris being a troublesome young man with a decidedly foul mouth. I have never
Show More
laughed so hard at any other book in my life, the stories of Patrick McManus included. There are few books that manage to hold so honestly to the true nature of a mischievous boy, unacceptable bits and all, and there is no other book that holds a candle to this for comedic value. It isn't in the surprise of his actions, but in the fact that despite a reader being able to foresee the consequences of Harris's actions long before he does, the reader is always so entirely captured in the ride that Harris takes along the way and particularly his reactions after the fact. I found myself laughing at what I knew was coming long before it ever happened only to find myself laughing that much harder by the time it actually came to pass. I'd recommend this to any literate person who doesn't risk bodily injury from the laughter it will unavoidably induce.
Show Less
LibraryThing member Eyre32
I loved Harris. He reminds of some of my students who have huge imaginations and noses for trouble. I keep more than one copy on my classroom shelves because all the boys want to read it after I read them the part about the frog. Ew!
LibraryThing member fuzzi
A young boy of eleven spends the summer at the farm of a distant cousin, and finds himself repeatedly in trouble, at the instigation of nine year old Harris. Very funny, and an enjoyable read.
LibraryThing member villemezbrown
Banned Book Week! Time to read some banned books. First up is this curious little item from the mid-90s, challenged apparently for its language.

A nameless 11-year-old narrator is passed from relative to relative in the 1950s (Probably? Reference is made to a 1949 truck.) because his parents are a
Show More
pair of hopeless drunks. The latest stop is a farm in Minnesota (Probably? There is reference to someone going 150 miles west to North Dakota.) where we are introduced to Harris, the poster child for The Dangerous Book for Boys. The book flap references Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn, and like them, Harris is chock full of mischief, willfulness and life-threatening plans for play that would probably make helicopter parents faint at the mere thought of them. He drops racist references to Japanese people as casually as Huck used the N-word. Harris also uses the word "damn" liberally, which I guess some people find offensive? And there are references to nudie pics.

So, should it be banned? No. Might it be inappropriate for young readers? Um, yeah. If I were reading it to a child, I'd feel obliged to have a lot of side discussions to put a lot of things into context of the historical framework.

But, hey, I'm an adult, and I grew up on a farm that was testosterone heavy with two older brothers, a father and a live-in uncle and had my own share of stupidly dangerous episodes of play and work, as well as exposure to racism, profanity, and pornography, so it was pretty easy to relate.

The hijinks are amusing enough in their boys-will-be-boys way with plenty of groin-injuring slapstick. The ending, like the setting and protagonist's name, seems needlessly vague, but its acceptable enough in its what-do-you-think-happened-next way that depends entirely on if you are in a good or bad mood when you finish the book.
Show Less
LibraryThing member lcornet
Definitely for boys! Didn't exactly love the story but kept reading to find out how it ended.
LibraryThing member eduscapes
Set in rural Minnesota after WWII, the book focuses on a boy's experiences living with his cousins during summer vacation. Having spent summers on a farm in Iowa, it was fun to read all of their adventures. As usual, Paulson's writing is colorful and full of vivid images.
LibraryThing member DebbieMcCauley
An eleven year old boy is sent to stay on his aunt and uncles farm for a summer, escaping a troubled home life. Harris is his daredevil cousin who constantly leads him astray. Great for boys aged 10 plus, descriptive and well told.




(155 ratings; 4.1)
Page: 2.2571 seconds