The Wonderful O

The Wonderful O

Hardback New York Review Children's Collection

By (author) James Thurber, Illustrated by Marc Simont

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  • Publisher: NYRB Children's
  • Format: Hardback | 80 pages
  • Dimensions: 137mm x 201mm x 13mm | 658g
  • Publication date: 7 May 2009
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 1590173090
  • ISBN 13: 9781590173091
  • Illustrations note: COLOR ILLUSTRATIONS
  • Sales rank: 116,087

Product description

Littlejack has a map that indicates the existence of a treasure on a far island. Black has a ship to get there. So they team up and sail off on Black's vessel, the Aeiu-a name based on all the vowels except for O. O he hates since his mother got wedged in a porthole. Black and Littlejack arrive at the port of the island and demand the treasure. No one knows anything about it, so they have their henchmen ransack the place-to no avail. But Black has a better idea: he will take over the island and he will purge it of O. The vicissitudes visited on the islanders by Black and Littlejack, the harsh limits of a life sans O, and how finally with a little luck the islanders shake off their tyrannical interlopers and discover the true treasure for themselves all create a timelessly zany fairy tale about two louts who try to lock up the language-and lose.

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Author information

James Thurber (1894-1961) was one of the outstanding American humorists and cartoonists of the twentieth century. Thurber wrote nearly forty books, including collections of essays, short stories, fables, and children's stories. Marc Simont has illustrated nearly a hundred books. He won a Caldecott Honor in 1950 for illustrating Ruth Krauss's The Happy Day, and in 1957 he was awarded the Caldecott Medal for his pictures in A Tree Is Nice by Janice May Udry.

Review quote

The period coloured illustrations add to the charm to make a very inviting book. School Librarian Linguistic romp with an important lesson at its heart. London Review of Books A tale of loss, liberty and language laced with typical Thuberian wit. London Review of Books