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The Man in the Ceiling by Jules Feiffer
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The Man in the Ceiling

by Jules Feiffer

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295957,117 (3.99)3
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Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
Kinda cute story about a 10 yo boy and the family that he doesn't quite fit into. Unfortunately most of the time the characters are losers, and I am just tired of reading about people who don't really try. Jimmy heroically tries to wake them up, but they're mostly self-absorbed and self-pitying. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
Z wasn't feeling it. At all.
  beckydj | Oct 11, 2015 |
The Man in the Ceiling is a nice book about a changing family after watching a relative's broadway show. All the meanwhile, Jimmy, the main character, makes lots of cartoons. ( )
  meadert | Oct 31, 2012 |
The Man in the Ceiling is a great book for children ages 12 and older. The boy in the story is trying to find his identity and he is looking for support from his parents. He has never really been good at sports and he does not have a lot in common with his dad, or anyone in his family, except for his uncle. He is simply trying to figure out what works best for him and how he wants to live his life while still craving support from his family. I feel like a lot of older children would be able to relate to this story because they are at that age when they are trying to "find" themselves and figure out what they want and what they do not want. However, i feel this book is more for young boys than it is for young girls simply because it is told throught the young boy's point-of-view.
  cwoodrow | Apr 11, 2012 |
Having enjoyed other Feiffer works such as Passionella, I was disappointed and depressed by this book. It was described by one blurb as "wickedly funny", usually a sure sign that I'll like a book -- but I found it unfunny, wickedly or otherwise.
My beefs with this book are three:

1. Writing classes teach that you should "show, rather than tell;" but Feiffer tells us about our protagonist, Jimmy -- and tells us, and tells us.

2. The plot struck me as discouraging, though it was intended to be inspiring.

3. Jimmy's family behave abominably to him (and on occasion, to each other), with no negative consequences to themselves. If this was based on Feiffer's own family, I can only feel very, very sorry for him. The parents do not "parent"; in fact, the mother seems irresponsible as a parent, the father nearly oblivious. Jimmy's older sister is a nightmare who wouldn't have known an ungrounded day if she'd grown up in the house of actual *adults*; Jimmy's parents let her get away with murder (figuratively). This is the kind of family where someone will scream or argue for an hour, trying to get someone else to do a 10-minute chore for them...instead of just doing their own task themselves.
The adults seem equally bad at handling problems: I mean, how hard is it to insist that an untrained dog be put on a leash in your house, instead of destroying it?

The takeaway message seems to be, in part, that nobody else in life is reliable, no one will really support you if you have talent, so you have to just put up with their abuse until you succeed on your own -- and even then, someone might take that success away from you.

Positives: Each character behaves in a consistent, if maddening, manner. I liked the idea of expressing yourself through cartoon concepts, and the book does a good job showing the creative process. ( )
  ecfidler | Sep 9, 2011 |
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0062059076, Paperback)

Ages 8 & up. The first children's book both written and illustrated by cartoonist Feiffer is a funny, poignant and profoundly insightful look at the inner life of an artist, who also happens to be a young boy. Jimmy Jibbett loves drawing cartoons and hopes to be great some day--but first he must cope with a lack of privacy, a father who wishes he liked sports instead of drawing, a popular older boy who pressures him to sell out and his own urge to give up when he's failing. Just when Jimmy's starting to think that he's "doomed to be as much a flop as a cartoonist as he was as a boy," he finds a way to look at failure in a new light. In a starred review, Booklist called it "wickedly funny... reminiscent of Roald Dahl's edgy lampoons." In another starred review, Publishers Weekly declared it "one of the best books of the year."

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:38 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Although not very good at sports or in his schoolwork, Jimmy can draw and dreams of being a great cartoonist; that dream seems within reach when star athlete Charley Beemer suggests they create comics together.

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