While this is the second book in the Ramona Quimby series, it's only the first book that's from Ramona's point of view. And while Ramona has only aged one year (she's five years old in this one), it was published 13 years after Beezus and Ramona (1955 and 1968). Interestingly, that's not obvious at all in the content of the book! There's no blatant cultural shifts. I think that really speaks volumes for Beverly Cleary's writing talent!
I thought Ramona the Pest was actually a really sweet look at a young girl's perception of beginning kindergarten. Poor Ramona tries so hard to be good at kindergarten. She loves her teacher and enjoys (most of) her classmates... but things just keep going wrong! It can't be her fault, right? I think I might have been Ramona when I was five... lol Even though the protagonist is female, I think girls and boys who are starting kindergarten would enjoy this book as a readaloud!
As with the first book, there a few cultural differences in this book versus more contemporary reads. Ramona walks herself to school alone, and I think there's a mention that her dad smokes, and there's a big deal made about her teacher's stockings (would a modern kindergarten teacher wear stockings? Possibly not)... but it's not enough to detract any from the plot, and there's no language used that wouldn't be understandable by a modern five year old.
The same narrator narrates Ramona the Pest, and she continues to perform at or slightly above expectations. With YA books, the narrator often sounds young, like they're a teen or very young adult themselves. With Adult books, the narrator is, of course, an adult. It kind of throws me a little when I'm listening to Juvenile literature and the narrator is an older adult. But that's the way it always is. You'll see in my next review- I get more and more used to it!
*I checked out my copy of Ramona the Pest from my local library. (In fact, they had a "package" where I used only one download credit on Hoopla and got all of the Ramona books in one!)