The Wonderful O

Front Cover
Penguin, Jun 6, 2017 - Fiction - 96 pages
10 Reviews
Great American humorist James Thurber's beloved, madcap, and eerily timely fairy tale about an island society robbed of the wonders of the letter O--in a stunning Deluxe Edition featuring flaps, deckle-edged paper, and the original, full-color illustrations

Littlejack has a map that indicates the existence of a treasure on a far and lonely island, and Black has a ship to get there. So the two bad men team up and sail off on Black's vessel, the Aeiu. The name, Black explains, is all the vowels except for O--which he hates since his mother got wedged in a porthole: They couldn't pull her in, so they had to push her out. Black and Littlejack arrive at the port 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 purge it of O. ("I'll issue an edict!")

The harsh limits of a life sans O (where shoe is she and woe is we) and how finally with a little luck and lots of pluck the islanders shake off their overbearing interlopers and discover the true treasure for themselves (Oh yes--and get back their O's)--these are only some of the surprises that await readers of James Thurber's timelessly zany fairy tale about two louts who try to lock up the language--and lose. It is a tour de force of wordplay that will delight fans of Lewis Carroll, Dr. Seuss, Edward Lear, and Roald Dahl, and a timely reminder of how people can band together in the name of freedom to overthrow a tyrant.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Kristelh - LibraryThing

I enjoyed this childrens book. I like how James Thurber plays with words. I think other authors have borrowed from his technique. Reread it for #1001 summerroadtrip, a tour through Ohio. Reading it ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Dreesie - LibraryThing

An odd little story full of wordplay. What happens when the letter O is banned? Chas! Cnfusin! Much of the text has a singsong quality--but not all of it. A little uneven. I would actually love to see ... Read full review

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About the author (2017)

James Thurber (1894-1961) was one of the preeminent American humorists and cartoonists of the twentieth century. Most famous for his widely anthologized short story "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty," he was a contributor to The New Yorker for more than thirty years and wrote nearly forty books--collections of essays, short stories, fables, and children's stories, including The 13 Clocks and the Caldecott Medal winner Many Moons.

Marc Simont (illustrations; 1915-2013) illustrated nearly a hundred books, among them James Thurber's The 13 Clocks and a 1990 edition of Thurber's Many Moons. He worked with such authors as Marjorie Weinman Sharmat (on the Nate the Great series) and Margaret Wise Brown and won both a Caldecott Honor and a Caldecott Medal for his illustrations of children's books.

Ransom Riggs (introduction) is the author of the multimillion-copy #1 New York Times bestseller Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children--now a major motion picture by Tim Burton--as well as its bestselling sequels Hollow City and Library of Souls and the companion volume Tales of the Peculiar. He grew up in Florida and now lives in Los Angeles.

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