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Characters / Ramona Quimby

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A list of characters in the Ramona Quimby universe.

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The Quimby Family

    Ramona Quimby 
The main character. Energetic and inquisitive, Ramona is sometimes a handful for her parents, sister and teachers. Despite this, she enjoys school (except spelling, since she finds it boring) and gets along with most of her class.
  • Babysitting Episode: In Ramona's World, she volunteers to take care of Daisy's cat for a week, and is tasked with looking after both him and her baby sister Roberta for a short while.
  • Berserk Button: Being treated as if she's amusing when she's trying to be serious sets her off.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: In the Henry Huggins books, she went through a "terrible twos" phase.
  • Butt-Monkey: Pretty accident prone; this is the girl who got the stomach flu and thought she was a nuisance due to a misunderstanding on the same day.
  • Character Development: Over the course of the series, Ramona grows from a Bratty Half-Pint into a more mature and rational person while still retaining her enthusiasm and zest for life.
  • Daddy's Girl: Is as creative as her father and loves spending time with him. The narrative even straight-out says she's "her father's girl".
  • Deuteragonist: In "Beezus and Ramona", she's the deuteragonist to Beezus's protagonist. This lasts for that book only.
  • Didn't Think This Through: Many of Ramona's problems result when she jumps into something without considering the consequences first, typical for children her age. For example, when she makes a crown out of plant burs and wears it on the way home from school, she soon finds out that she can't get it off because the hooks in the burs are stuck to her hair.
  • Does Not Like Spam: Hates oatmeal to the point that thinking about it while nauseous makes the nausea worse. She also doesn't like peas or tongue, although she enjoyed the latter until she found out what it was.
  • Genki Girl: She's described as someone who "likes to be excited" and "the cheerleader type" by Beezus.
  • Girliness Upgrade: In "Ramona the Pest", she trades the overalls she wore in the Henry Huggins books and "Beezus and Ramona" for dresses as she enters kindergarten. This makes sense for the time the first books were written: pants and overalls on girls were verboten in schools. In the later books, she goes back to wearing pants most of the time.
  • Improvised Clothes: In Ramona the Brave, when she loses one of her shoes to a dog, she staples some pieces of paper together to make a sandal.
  • Kindhearted Cat Lover: Is a good-hearted, well-meaning girl despite her faults, and she's very genial towards both Picky-Picky and Daisy's cat, Clawed.
  • Large Ham: She often goes all out whenever she's excited or in a bad mood.
  • Ms. Imagination: Likes to play pretend and a lot of her mishaps happen when her imagination runs away with her.
    Neighbors: Have you ever seen a child with such imagination?
  • One-Note Cook: She claims to only be able to make Jell-O and French toast when her parents challenge her and Beezus to make dinner for the night (in response to the girls refusing to eat tongue). Subverted, when she and Beezus are able to successfully prepare an edible dinner consisting of chicken, cornbread, rice, peas, and pears, even when missing a few ingredients and making a mess of the kitchen.
  • Plucky Girl: Fearless and feisty, Ramona never gives up when faced with a challenge.
  • The Scapegoat: Ramona hates staying at the Kemps' house, because she's always blamed by Mrs. Kemp when Willa Jean does something wrong, because she's older and "should have known better".
  • Sick Episode: Caught the stomach flu briefly in "Ramona Quimby, Age 8".
  • Slapstick Knows No Gender: Has gotten burs in her hair, egg in her hair, fallen off a bike...
  • Tantrum Throwing: In earlier books, daycare-, preschool- and kindergarten-age Ramona is predictably prone to doing this when something goes wrong, though she does it much less as she matures and grows older.
  • Tomboy: Enjoys some things stereotypically considered boyish, such as wearing pants and having her hair short.

    Beatrice "Beezus" Quimby 
Ramona's big sister, and the main character of "Beezus and Ramona". She fights with her sister often, but they still get along for the most part, especially as Ramona gets older and matures.
  • Adaptational Attractiveness: Somewhat. Although she's by no means ugly, she's described in the books as being a little bit gawky and having acne like an average teenager (something she's rather sensitive about). In the Ramona and Beezus film she's played by the lovely and completely clear-skinned Selena Gomez.
  • Bratty Teenage Daughter: She can be quite grumpy and opinionated at times, especially towards Ramona.
  • Cool Big Sis: Can be a role model for Ramona as well.
  • A Day in the Limelight: "Beezus and Ramona" is the only book written from Beezus' perspective, coming after the Henry Huggins books but before Ramona took over the rest of the series.
  • Easily Embarrassed Youngster: Always more easily-embarrassed than Ramona, especially as a teen.
  • Hypocritical Heartwarming: She can be quite mean to Ramona, but she will never let anyone else pick on her.
  • In-Series Nickname: Her real name is Beatrice, but Ramona started calling her Beezus when she was little and unable to pronounce her name correctly. It becomes a major issue in later books when she grows tired of the nickname.
  • Like Mother, Like Daughter: Personality-wise, she seems to take after her mother (sensible, matronly, and practical-minded), while Ramona is more like their father (creative and spontaneous). The neighbors say that Beezus is "her mother's girl".
  • Kindhearted Cat Lover: Treats Picky-picky with utmost love and respect. She becomes very protective of him when the family gets mad at his eating the jack-o-lantern in "Ramona and Her Father", even snapping at her father for driving Picky-picky to it with his cheap cat food diet.
  • Not So Above It All: Despite being more mature compared to Ramona, she has her moments of rebelliousness, especially in the later books as she becomes a teenager.
    • In "Ramona and Her Father" she has an argument with her father about his smoking habit, which startles Ramona very much.
    • In "Ramona and Her Mother", she refuses to let her mother cut her hair because she wants to get a fancy haircut at a salon like the other girls.
    • In "Ramona Quimby, Age 8", she has an argument with her mother over a sleepover that she wants to go to.
    • In "Ramona's World", she secretly gets her ears pierced and wears a scarf around her head to cover them at home, not wanting her parents to know. Thankfully, they don't make a big deal about it.
  • Rise of Zitboy: Being an appearance-conscious young lady, she worries about her pimples a lot and constantly scrubs her face to get rid of them.
  • Those Two Girls: With Mary Jane in "Henry Huggins".
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: In "Ramona and Her Mother", she saves enough money to get a fancy haircut at Robert's School of Hair Design, but she gets stuck with an inexperienced hair stylist who gives her a haircut that looks like a "cheap wig".

    Roberta Quimby 
Born at the end of "Ramona Forever" when Ramona was eight years old. She caused Ramona to develop slight Middle Child Syndrome, though Ramona does enjoy playing with her and tries to get her parents to let her babysit.
  • The Baby of the Bunch: Takes Ramona's place as youngest member of the Quimby family.
  • Baby See, Baby Do: When Ramona sticks her tongue out, so does Roberta.
  • Baby's First Words: Her first word was "Mo-mo", in an attempt to say Ramona's name.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: A little annoying, though it's not really her fault since she's only a baby.
  • Does Not Like Spam: She doesn't like strained peas and ends up making a mess when Ramona tries to feed them to her.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: She doesn't actually show up until the end of "Ramona Forever", but her impending birth is an important part of the plot beforehand.

    Dorothy Quimby (nee Day) 
Ramona's mother. Originally a stay-at-home mom, she started working part time in "Ramona the Brave" to help the family make money and then full time in "Ramona and her Father" after her husband lost his job.

  • Alliterative Name: Her maiden name is Dorothy Day.
  • Career Versus Family: Ramona doesn't take it too well that her Mother isn't staying at home like she used to, though that could be more due to the fact she's being babysat by Howie's and Willa Jean's grandmother.
  • Good Parents: Specifically Good Mother: Most of the time. Though she can be stern, she's usually pretty good with her daughters.
  • Morning Sickness: The first sign that she was pregnant with Roberta was throwing up.

    Robert Quimby 
Ramona's father and aspiring artist. He was laid off in "Ramona and Her Father" but got a job as a cashier at a supermarket. Frustrated with the stress of the job, he went back to college to get his teaching certificate; however, due to being unable to find work as a teacher, he returned to work at the supermarket as a manager.

  • Character Tics: Ramona knows her father is worried when he starts making jokes more often.
  • Compressed Vice: He starts smoking in "Ramona and Her Father" but quits before the end of the book. Since he's unemployed at the time, he likely takes up the habit due to stress, which explains why it's short-lived.
  • Good Parents: Specifically Good Father: In the same vein as his wife. He means well, even if he messes up sometimes.
  • Raised by Grandparents: He was raised by his grandmother and often quotes her sayings when he wants his daughters to behave.
  • Starving Artist: Though not exactly starving, he has difficulty finding work as an art teacher and has to work at a supermarket to make ends meet for his family.
  • Stepford Smiler: Not normally, but when he tells jokes, he's often actually worried.

    Aunt Beatrice 
Dorothy's younger sister and Beezus' favorite aunt. She's an important secondary character in "Beezus and Ramona" but doesn't show up again until "Ramona Forever".

  • Annoying Younger Sibling: Was annoying to Dorothy when they were children.
  • The Bus Came Back: After six books of absence, she returns to marry Hobart.
  • Cool Aunt: Her visits are highly anticipated by Beezus and Ramona.
  • Demoted to Extra: In the first book Aunt Beatrice is established as important part of the Quimby family and frequent visitor to the house but, aside from being referenced in "Ramona and Her Mother", she doesn't make an appearance until six books and four years (29 years in real world time) later in "Ramona Forever". The TV series and movie expand her role by incorporating her into plot lines from the other books, though.
  • In-Series Nickname: Gets called "Bea".
  • Official Couple: With Howie's uncle in "Ramona Forever"; they dated and got married.

The family cat, who is several years older than Ramona. He dies during "Ramona Forever".
  • Big Eater: Has eaten the tongue or fish the girls refused to eat, and a big chunk out of a pumpkin once. Justified in that he hates his cheap cat food and will do anything for something tastier.
  • Cats Are Mean: To Ramona anyway. Justified in that she was mean to him when she was very young (she used to use his fur to wipe paint off her hands, among other things), and he never got over it. He mellows out towards her a bit in "Age 8", though, at least enough to cuddle on the couch with her while she's sick.
  • Does Not Like Spam: He hates Puss-puddy, the cheap cat food the Quimbys have to buy for him when they can no longer afford the brand he used to eat.
  • Due to the Dead: When he dies in "Ramona Forever", Beezus and Ramona hold a small funeral and make a gravestone for him out of a wooden board.
  • Killed Off for Real: Dies of old age in "Ramona Forever".
  • Trademark Favorite Food: He loves melon rind.

    Mr. Quimby's grandmother 
Ramona's great-grandma.
  • Apron Matron: From what little we know of her, she was quite stern and straitlaced. One of her favorite sayings was "A smack at the table is worth a smack on the bottom."
  • Cool Old Lady: Still, she was a loving grandparent and raised her grandson the best she could. According to Mr. Quimby, even when money was tight during his childhood, she always managed to buy paper for him to draw on.
  • The Ghost: She never makes a physical appearance, although Mr. Quimby references her wisdom many times in the books.
  • Posthumous Character: She is implied to be deceased. Mr. Quimby always speaks of her in the past tense, and Ramona thinks about how she probably wouldn't have liked her father's grandmother after being annoyed by her sayings too many times.

Neighbors and Classmates

    Henry Huggins 
Beezus's friend, and star of his own series. He's an important character in "Beezus and Ramona", and makes a few appearances in later Ramona books.
  • Hero of Another Story: He's the main character of his own series Henry Huggins, which mostly takes place before the Ramona series.
  • Nice Guy: He's a very friendly boy and very seldomly acts mean.
  • Precocious Crush: When she was five, Ramona decided that she was going to marry him.

A boy in Ramona's class. In kindergarten, she thought he was cute and would chase him around trying to kiss him. He has trouble in school, and Ramona often tries to help him out.
  • Embarrassing Nickname: Hates being called "Davy-in-the-Gravy".
  • Put on a Bus: He's never seen again after "Ramona the Brave" since they end up in different classrooms.
  • To Be Lawful or Good: Ramona is often reprimanded for trying to help him out in class instead of doing her own work.

    Howie Kemp 

A boy from Ramona's neighborhood. One of her closest friends, though they start to drift apart as they get older.

  • Aloof Older Brother: He doesn't get along very well with his little sister Willa Jean and finds her annoying, though they do care about each other.
  • Characterization Marches On: In "Beezus and Ramona", Howie is considered the noisiest little boy on the block and is far more rambunctious than the overly serious boy he is in the later books. The simplest explanation for this is that he mellowed as he grew older.
  • Creative Sterility: His imagination isn't nearly as wild as Ramona's, which she notices.
  • Mellow Fellow: He's the calm, even-tempered type and rarely gets overly excited about anything.
  • Mr. Fixit: He has an interest in building and making things. When Ramona makes a valentine for him, she draws a hammer, a saw and some nails on it.
  • Platonic Life-Partners: He and Ramona remain good friends throughout the series.

    Willa Jean Kemp 

Howie's younger sister, who causes a lot of trouble for him and Ramona. In fact, she acts just like Ramona did when she was four.

  • Annoying Younger Sibling: She frequently annoys Ramona and Howie when they want to spend time together. To make things worse, Ramona is always blamed for whatever Willa Jean does by Mrs. Kemp.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: She's going through the grumpy toddler phase.
  • Elmuh Fudd Syndwome: Talks this way (pronouncing her "R"s as "W"s) in the earlier books, though she eventually outgrows it.
  • Girls Love Stuffed Animals: She owns a huge stuffed bear, named Woger after her neighborhood milkman Roger.
  • Poetic Justice: A mild case. Howie's sister, Willa Jean, annoys Ramona and Howie in the exact same manner that Ramona annoyed Henry and Beezus in the first book. Not that Ramona would ever admit that she acted that way.
  • You Remind Me of X: Many characters note that she behaves a lot like Ramona did when she was younger, being bratty and demanding. Ramona doesn't like this comparison.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: She is afraid of the furnace in her house's basement. Ramona and Howie often go down there so she can't bother them.

    Mrs. Kemp 

Howie's grandmother, who watches Ramona when she stays at the Kemps' house after school. She spoils Willa Jean, but doesn't like Ramona, making her watch Willa Jean and then blaming Ramona whenever she does anything wrong.

  • Hate Sink: She essentially functions as one. Although most adults in the series are shown to be flawed but well-meaning people in their own ways, Mrs. Kemp is the only adult to be unreasonably cruel towards Ramona, always blaming her for the bratty things Willa Jean does.
  • Karma Houdini: Despite treating Ramona like crap and using her as a free babysitter, Howie's grandmother ends up getting exactly what she wants (not having to watch Ramona anymore).
  • Kick the Dog: In "Ramona Forever", after Willa Jean destroys an accordion that was a gift from her Uncle Hobart, Mrs Kemp not only blames and punishes Ramona, but shames her about the incident in front of Uncle Hobart. This hurts Ramona so much that she later cries at dinner while recounting the incident to her family.
  • Misplaced Retribution: No matter what terrible thing Willa Jean does, Mrs. Kemp will always find a way to blame Ramona for it.
  • Needlework Is for Old People: She sews and is a grandmother.
  • Pet the Dog: After Ramona saves Bea and Hobart's wedding by finding the missing ring, Mrs. Kemp actually thanks Ramona, smiles at her, and tells her she looks pretty. After three books of treating her like crap, this was long overdue compensation.
  • Pushover Parents: She almost never bothers to discipline Willa Jean and always pawns the blame for her mishaps onto Ramona.
  • Textile Work Is Feminine: She has some skill at sewing, making fluffy sheep costumes for Howie and Willa Jean and later using basting stitches to attach rings to a pillow for her son Hobart's wedding.
  • Unnamed Parent: Or grandparent. Her first name is not revealed.

    Uncle Hobart 

Howie and Willa Jean's uncle, who eventually marries Ramona's aunt Beatrice.

  • In-Series Nickname: Mr. Quimby refers to him as "Old Moneybags", though not to his face.
  • Momma's Boy: He has a close relationship with his mother, Mrs. Kemp. When he was working in the oil fields in Saudi Arabia, he would dream about her apple pie.
  • Nice Guy: He's first introduced bringing gifts for his niece and nephew. Although Ramona doesn't like him at first, he turns out to be calm, patient, understanding and kind-hearted. No wonder Aunt Beatrice likes him.
  • Smoking Is Cool: He doesn't actually smoke, but when he was in high school, he would imitate famous tobacco-chewing baseball players by chewing licorice and spitting it on the grass.

    Susan Kushner 
A girl in Ramona's classes throughout the series, and one of the few that Ramona doesn't get along with. In kindergarten, Ramona was obsessed with tugging on Susan's curls and yelling "boing!", but their full-blown animosity didn't start until first grade when Susan copied Ramona's art project and Ramona retaliated by destroying Susan's work. Ramona makes peace with her at the very end of "Ramona's World" when she realizes that Susan is only the way she is because of her mother.

  • Always Someone Better: For Ramona. She's a Teacher's Pet who always behaves perfectly and does everything expected of her.
  • Berserk Button: According to Ramona, she gets really mad (and overreacts) when boys call her "Snoozin' Susan".
    Ramona: When boys call you a name, you're just supposed to get a little bit mad and not go telling the teacher.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Susan Kushner, who would become Ramona's rival throughout elementary school, first appears in "Beezus and Ramona" as one of a bunch of kids invited to Ramona's party.
  • Insufferable Genius: A pint-sized version, obviously, but Susan tends to get on her classmates' nerves (and especially Ramona's) because of how she prefers to flaunt her intelligence. In Ramona's World, she brings an apple to eat instead of cake at Ramona's birthday party, announcing that blowing out candles is unsanitary and that eating cake can give you cavities.
  • Put on a Bus: Doesn't appear in "Ramona Quimby, Age 8" or "Ramona Forever", because Ramona transfers to a different school. She comes Back for the Finale in "Ramona's World".
  • The Rival: She and Ramona have a rivalry up until "Ramon's World".
  • Stepford Smiler: Is a "Miss Perfect" type that behaves impeccably with adults, yet is being pushed by her mother to be perfect.

    Daisy Kidd 
Introduced in "Ramona's World", she quickly becomes Ramona's best friend. Her family mirrors Ramona's in many ways, and Ramona thinks that Daisy is absolutely perfect.

    Danny / "Yard Ape" 
A boy in Ramona's fourth grade class. Even though he starts out teasing her and stealing her eraser, they become friends and she quickly develops a crush on him.
  • The Ace: He's liked by all his classmates and his school papers always have "Good Work!" or "Excellent!" written at the top.
  • Insult Backfire: Ramona gives him the nickname "Yard Ape", which he enjoys. He tries calling her "Bigfoot", but she only responds with "that's Superfoot to you".
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: He's only referred to by his real name (Danny) in the series when addressed by adults. Even the narration calls him Yard Ape.
  • UST: Well, in the sense that 9-year olds can have romantic tension. Ramona and Yard Ape both clearly have crushes on each other, but they don't want to admit it to each other, and the series ends before they're old enough to start dating.

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