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The 13 Clocks [Hardcover]

By James Thurber, Marc Simont (Illustrator) & Neil Gaiman (Introduction by)
Our Price $ 12.71  
Retail Value $ 14.95  
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Item Number 426212  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   128
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 6.75" Height: 9"
Weight:   0.8 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Jul 29, 2008
Publisher   NYR Children's Collection
Age  7-10
ISBN  1590172752  
EAN  9781590172759  


Availability  0 units.


Item Description...
Overview
In a cold, gloomy castle where all the clocks have stopped, a wicked Duke amuses himself by finding new and fiendish ways of rejecting the suitors for his niece, the good and beautiful Princess Saralinda.

Publishers Description
"Once upon a time, in a gloomy castle on a lonely hill, where there were thirteen clocks that wouldn't go, there lived a cold, aggressive Duke, and his niece, the Princess Saralinda. She was warm in every wind and weather, but he was always cold. His hands were as cold as his smile, and almost as cold as his heart. He wore gloves when he was asleep, and he wore gloves when he was awake, which made it difficult for him to pick up pins or coins or the kernels of nuts, or to tear the wings from nightingales."
So begins James Thurber's sublimely revamped fairy tale, "The 13 Clocks," in which a wicked Duke who imagines he has killed time, and the Duke's beautiful niece, for whom time seems to have run out, both meet their match, courtesy of an enterprising and very handsome prince in disguise. Readers young and old will take pleasure in this tale of love forestalled but ultimately fulfilled, admiring its upstanding hero ("He yearned to find in a far land the princess of his dreams, singing as he went, and possibly slaying a dragon here and there") and unapologetic villain ("We all have flaws," the Duke said. "Mine is being wicked"), while wondering at the enigmatic Golux, the mysterious stranger whose unpredictable interventions speed the story to its necessarily happy end.

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More About James Thurber, Marc Simont & Neil Gaiman

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James Thurber (1894 1961), one of the outstanding American humorists and cartoonists of the twentieth century, was born in Columbus, Ohio, and launched his professional writing career as a reporter for the Columbus Dispatch in 1920. He began writing for The New Yorker in 1927 after his friend E. B. White got him a job at the magazine. Though hampered by failing eyesight, Thurber wrote nearly forty books, including collections of essays, short stories, fables, and children s stories. He won a Tony Award for his popular Broadway play, A Thurber Carnival.

Marc Simont (1915-2013) 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. He is the illustrator for The New York Review Children s Collection books The Backward Day and The Wonderful O.

Neil Gaiman is an award-winning author of novels, short stories, children's books, and graphic novels. Among his works are the children's books Coraline, The Wolves in the Walls, and The Day I Swapped My Dad for Two Goldfish; the Sandman graphic novels series; and the fantasy novels Stardust and Smoke and Mirrors. Originally from England, Gaiman now lives in the United States.

"

James Thurber was born in 1894 and died in 1961.

James Thurber has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Perennial Classics


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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > Children's Books > Ages 9-12 > General   [21670  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > Children's Books > Literature > Fairy Tales, Folk Tales & Myths > General   [1010  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > Children's Books > Literature > Fairy Tales, Folk Tales & Myths > Stories   [1142  similar products]
4Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Authors, A-Z > ( T ) > Thurber, James   [7  similar products]



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Reviews - What do our customers think?
One of my top 10 children's books  Nov 29, 2008
A wonderful book that is special for children and their parents - the perfect combination of silly and sweet. Thurber tells us in his preface that he had a great time writing the book and you can feel it. Read this book aloud to your kidlets so you don't miss out on the fun of his word choices.
 
Very amusing  Oct 17, 2008
The 13 Clocks is an amusing tale with lots of dry wit for grown-ups and charming pictures for kids. The story has a satisfying flow and conclusion where the bad guy pays and the good guy wins.
 
Wonderful, wordy, poetic -- begs to be read aloud!  Oct 5, 2008
"Once upon a time, in a gloomy castle on a lonely hill, where there were thirteen clocks that wouldn't go, there lived a cold, aggressive Duke, and his neice, the Princess Saralinda."

Well. that first line has just about everything you need to start off a fairy tale, doesn't it? And it only gets better from there.

The New York Review has just reissued Thurber's classic, paired with the illustrations by Marc Simont, with a new introduction by Neil Gaiman.
The 13 Clocks is as full of fairy tale as you can get, with a Princess, the evil Duke, and, of course, a Prince. But there's also a Golux, who seems wise, but who sometimes makes things up and is extremely forgetful, the 13 clocks, an old woman who cries jewels, and the Todal ("The Todal looks like a blop of glup. , , , It makes a sound like rabbits screaming, and smells of old, unopened rooms.")

The story, although it's exciting and scary and thrilling, isn't even the best part. No the best part, as far as I'm concerned is the words that make up the story itself and the poetical way Thurber weaves them together. It's not really poetry, yet, at the same time, it is. This story, like poems, uses those glittery, evocative, slippery wonderful words -- like "brambles and thorns and "bonged the gongs of a throng of frogs, all green and vivid on their lily pads." Words like "gleep" and "made of lip" and "impudence" and "savage clash of swords." -- that together imbue the tale with feeling and delight.
+

This is truly a wonderful story and one that simply begs to be read aloud.
 
Brilliant  Sep 28, 2008
Quirky, bizarre, creative, and thoroughly loveable. This is how I describe one of the strangest little fairy tales I've ever read. This is a story that is truly creative and original even as it borrows from classic fairy tale/horror themes.
 
A wonderful book by James Thurber in a beautiful new edition  Aug 31, 2008
I was astonished to receive the summer list from The New York Review Children Collection and to find this extraordinary book by James Thurber. It begins:

"Once upon a time, in a gloomy castle on a lonely hill, where there were thirteen clocks that wouldn't go, there lived a cold, aggressive Duke, and his niece, the Princess Saralinda. She was warm in every wind and weather, but he was always cold. His hands were as cold as his smile, and almost as cold as his heart. He wore gloves when he was asleep, and he wore gloves when he was awake, which made it difficult for him to pick up pins or coins or the kernels of nuts, or to tear the wings from nightingales."

Neil Gaiman's Introduction was so good and so loving I had to read more, and I found this entry from November 2001 on his blog:

"So I'm reading James Thurber's "The 13 Clocks" to my daughter right now.

"I mentioned the fun I was having reading the book to American friends, expecting a chorus of "yes, it was our favourite book as children" and got nothing but blank looks and people shifting uncomfortably in their chairs. [I would have shifted just as uncomfortably three weeks ago.] ...

"To my surprise, and to my dismay, I discovered that it's more or less out of print (there's a hardback that may be in print, but this site have it listed as unavailable and won't let you order it), and even the rare bookfinder services don't have any Ronald Searle illustrated copies. Which leaves me perfectly gobsmacked. I mean, it's one of the great kids' books of the last century. It may be the best thing Thurber ever wrote. It's certainly the most fun that anybody can have reading anything aloud (I'm doing the Duke as Peter Sellers doing Olivier doing Richard III, and the Golux as Marty Feldman). If I ever wrote something half as good I'd be over the moon. And it's out of print."

I suppose Gaiman's love letter must have led to this wonderful new edition and to his being chosen to write the Introduction. Whatever the facts, my deepest gratitude to NYRB and to Gaiman and to Marc Simont for the wonderful illustrations. This is a treasure for kids and for adults.

Robert C. Ross 2008

PS: M. Williams suggests in the Comments that The Thirteen Clocks on CD recited by Edward Woodward is superior to the versions recited by Lauren Bacall or Peter Ustinov. Thanks for the suggestion. B.
 

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