Book rating: 05 Hardback New York Review Children's Collection

By (author) J.P. Martin, Illustrated by Quentin Blake

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  • Publisher: NYRB Children's
  • Format: Hardback | 176 pages
  • Dimensions: 144mm x 216mm x 18mm | 320g
  • Publication date: 28 July 2007
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 1590172396
  • ISBN 13: 9781590172391
  • Sales rank: 85,150

Product description

Unimaginably rich, invariably swathed in a magnificent purple dressing-gown, Uncle oversees a vast ramshackle castle full of friendly kooks while struggling to fend off the sneak attacks of the incorrigible Badfort Crowd. Each Uncle story introduces a new character from Uncle's madcap world, but for every delightful friend of Uncle, there is a foe who is no less deliriously wicked. Luckily the misbegotten schemes of the Badfort Crowd are no match for Uncle's superior wits. Quentin Blake's quirky illustrations are the perfect complement to J.P. Martin's stories, each one of a perfect length for bedtime reading. Lovers of Roald Dahl and William Steig will rejoice in Uncle's wonderfully bizarre and happy world, where the good guys always come out on top, and once a year, everybody, good and bad, sits down together for an enormous Christmas feast.

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Author information

J. P. Martin (1880-1966) published his Uncle stories at the urging of his children, for whom he created. After the last war, he moved to the village of Timberscombe in Somerset, where he served in the small chapel. Six Uncle books were published in the series, the last in 1973, seven years after his death. QUENTIN BLAKE is one of the best-known illustrators of our time, and his books with a wide range of authors, including Joan Aiken, Russell Hoban, Michael Rosen and Roald Dahl, have been treasured by generations of children throughout the world. In 1999 he became the first Children's Laureate. In 2005 he was awarded a CBE, and in 2013 he was knighted for services to illustration. Quentin lives in London.

Customer reviews

By KBarber 14 Mar 2012 5

I loved this book as a child. It is an imaginative story enhanced by the illustrations of Q.Blake. I only wish the rest of the series was re-published, not just book 1 and 2.

By Anna-Louise Brown 06 Aug 2011 5

This is a book I read over and over again as a child and even as an adult.
It is so full of stimulus for the imagination and makes you want to design your dream city.

I cannot recommend it more highly.

Review quote

"A great comic masterpiece." -- Richard Ingrams Oldie Editor Oldie Reprint of the year. A kind of 'Gormanghast' for children of eight and up, this is a very funny book. Financial Times Like all great children's writing, people delight in finding multiple levels of meaning. Uncle's entertaining nonsense makes it perfect for children (and adults), while some readers claim it exposes society's hypocrisies and critiques capitalism. -- Julia Eccleshare 1001 Children's Books You Must Read Before You Grow Up This brilliant flight of nonsense for children of eight and older has long been hard to obtain; this is a fittingly classy reprint. Financial Times