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The Odious Ogre by Norton Juster

The Odious Ogre (2010)

by Norton Juster

Other authors: Jules Feiffer (Illustrator)

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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
When I found out Norton Juster, author, and Jules Pfeiffer, illustrator, were back together again for a new children's book, I was thrilled. Their masterly collaboration, 1961's The Phantom Tollbooth, has stayed with me for years, and I recommend it to everyone I know who either knows the secret of looking at the world with magic, or needs to learn it.

49 years after The Phantom Tollbooth, Juster & Pfeiffer's The Odious Ogre brings Juster's mastery of descriptive English and Pfeiffer's lyrical, energized illustrations to a slightly younger crowd -- the book is recommended for ages 4 to 8 to Tollbooth's 9 to 12, but would be a fun read-aloud book for parents and younger, pre-school aged children. There are a lot of active, descriptive words that can be acted out. The short story focuses on an odious ogre terrifying the countryside and the nice forest maiden whom he meets one day. I feel personally that the story is too short and too simple, given that I know what Juster is capable of in his prose, but I must stay aware that this story is meant for very very young children, and in that light is fun and pitch-perfect. It is charmant, but it will always be an age-appropriate introduction to Tollbooth, which I still consider the best example of YA literature in the 20th century. ( )
  mrsmarch | Nov 28, 2018 |
An odious ogre, widely believed to be "extraordinarily large, exceedingly ugly, constantly hungry, and absolutely merciless," terrorizes the countryside and finds that his depredations are made all too easy by his terrible reputation, and the fear and apathy this inspires in the local population. Then the ogre comes upon a polite, kindhearted young girl who has never heard of him, and who treats him courteously. He can hardly process this state of affairs, becomes paranoid, convinced that there must be a hidden trap somewhere, and eventually dies from the shock of it all...

Author Norton Juster and illustrator Jules Feiffer, perhaps best known for their work on the classic children's novel, The Phantom Tollbooth (which is one of my own all-time favorite books!), join forces here again to create an amusing, thought-provoking original fairy-tale exploring such themes as fear, reputation, and the idea of a self-fulfilling prophecy. I enjoyed the story, found the writing itself accomplished and appealing (no surprises there), and thought the artwork was well-suited to the text. I also appreciated the idea, highlighted in the latter half of the story, that we often give our enemies more power than they really have, in our imaginations, and that we can sometimes defeat our troubles, by keeping a positive outlook. All in all, an entertaining tale, one I would recommend to children who enjoys stories of ogres and other monsters, especially ones with surprising and humorous endings. ( )
  AbigailAdams26 | Jan 16, 2018 |
i love norton juster. i love jules feiffer. i didn't love this collabo. it's okay, but doesn't really break any new ground. a little disappointing. ( )
  robynsc | Sep 2, 2013 |
Loved this! ( )
  jenstrongin | Mar 31, 2013 |
Hilarious. As expected. ( )
  beckydj | Mar 31, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
It’s been way too long since we’ve had a story from Juster and Feiffer, and “The Odious Ogre” deserves to become a family staple. Let’s hope that children and their parents don’t have to wait another 50 years for a sequel.

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Norton Justerprimary authorall editionscalculated
Feiffer, JulesIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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For Howard and Muriel - N.J.
For Ginny and Roger - J.F.
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There was once an Ogre who had a terrible reputation.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0545162025, Hardcover)

The author and the illustrator of THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH--together again!

This is the story of a really rotten Ogre who is extraordinarily large, exceedingly ugly, unusually angry, constantly hungry, and absolutely merciless. He terrorizes the entire countryside and all the surrounding towns, wreaking havoc, sowing confusion, and dining happily on the hapless citizens. Nothing can stop him. But then he takes a wrong turn and encounters a kind and friendly young lady who does her best to help him--with a surprising result.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:32 -0400)

An ogre terrorizes villages until he meets a friendly villager.

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