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Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters by Mark…
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Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters (original 2001; edition 2002)

by Mark Dunn

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,4481722,518 (3.88)366
Member:tiffin
Title:Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters
Authors:Mark Dunn
Info:Anchor (2002), Paperback, 224 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***1/2
Tags:Modern American Lit.

Work details

Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters by Mark Dunn (2001)

  1. 30
    Tepper Isn't Going Out: A Novel by Calvin Trillin (amysisson)
    amysisson: Both are deceptively simple stories that highlight absurdity in human behavior.
  2. 21
    Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan (Runa)
  3. 10
    The Wonderful O by James Thurber (SylviaC)
    SylviaC: Both stories use a light touch to look at language and censorship.
  4. 00
    The Beautiful Bureaucrat by Helen Phillips (4leschats)
    4leschats: Similar aspects of word play demonstrate how the abstract nature of language creates, alters, and describes our concrete experiences.
  5. 11
    The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde (bucketyell)
  6. 11
    Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie (bookwoman247)
    bookwoman247: Word play and language are an intregal part of both books. Ella Minnow Pea is a bit more sophisticated, but for adults or teens who enjoyed Haroun and the Sea of Stories, I think they will also find Ella Minnow Pea very enjoyable.
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» See also 366 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 172 (next | show all)
This was a clever little novel that is a long word play game. An island off the East coast of America has always revered language and especially its most honored member, a man named Nollop who created the sentence "the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog" which uses all the letters of the alphabet with minimal repetition. A statue to Nollop is in the center of the island and when letters begin falling off of the alphabet printed on the statue, the town council decides that it is a sign from Nollop that they need to challenge themselves linguistically to not speak or write any letter that falls from the statue. There are harsh penalties for anyone who slips up. Since the book is an epistolary novel, the author as well must not use the letters as they disappear.

The idea is clever and it was fun to think about this but definitely the idea was better than the actual book. The word play stays front and center and I never felt much character or plot development though there is an attempt at some. This was fun to read and I'd recommend it, but more as a novelty than anything else. ( )
2 vote japaul22 | Aug 4, 2015 |
Should be required reading for civics class and others interested in leadership. It's important to consider reason when instituting rules and regulations. A cautionary tale? ABSOLUTELY! ( )
  sraelling | Jul 29, 2015 |
A story in letters and missing letters on the island of Nollop off the coast of South Carolina where the town hero Nollop came up with the pangram "The Quick Brown Fox Jumps Over The Lazy Dog". As letters fall off one by one from Nollop's statue the townspeople are forced to write and speak without the missing letters by crazed government officials. More than it seems this clever story is a cautionary tale of what small changes can be taken by people in charge to begin to erode the freedoms of a citizenry. The repression begins in small stages and the people start to turn against their neighbors to report the infractions of the new rules. The punishments build to a scary finale. Read the story to find out how all is resolved. Amusing, clever and thoughtful. ( )
1 vote dallenbaugh | Jul 21, 2015 |
As letters drop out of the famous "Quick fox, lazy dog" typing sentence, a village is forced to do without those same letters in day to day life. Entertaining and thought provoking. Highly recommend this book. ( )
  ChristineEllei | Jul 14, 2015 |
Excellent!!! Set on the island of Nollop, off the coast of South Carolina -- a tiny island nation formed and honoring Mr. Nollop, the writer of the sentence: "The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog." As letters from this sentence begin to fall from the cenotaph honoring Mr. Nollop, the nation's high counsel declares these letters must be eradicated. ( )
  Phyllis.Mann | Jul 13, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 172 (next | show all)
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Epigraph
In the beginning was the Word.

- Gospel of John, Chapter 1, Verse 1
The wicked peon quivered,

then gazed balefully at the judges

who examined him.

- Anonymous Typesetter
Dedication
For Mary
First words
Nollopton. Sunday, July 23. Dear Cousin Tassie, Thank you for the lovely postcards.
Quotations
For the present, it is easier for us to turn away. Our repulsion, you see, will not spur us to revolt until this plague moves much closer to home.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
Haiku summary
Letters about a
Sign with letters that fall off.
Let her freedom ring.
(_debbie_)

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0385722435, Paperback)

Ella Minnow Pea is a girl living happily on the fictional island of Nollop off the coast of South Carolina. Nollop was named after Nevin Nollop, author of the immortal pangram,* “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.” Now Ella finds herself acting to save her friends, family, and fellow citizens from the encroaching totalitarianism of the island’s Council, which has banned the use of certain letters of the alphabet as they fall from a memorial statue of Nevin Nollop. As the letters progressively drop from the statue they also disappear from the novel. The result is both a hilarious and moving story of one girl’s fight for freedom of expression, as well as a linguistic tour de force sure to delight word lovers everywhere.

*pangram: a sentence or phrase that includes all the letters of the alphabet

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:33 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Ella Minnow Pea is a girl living happily on the fictional island of Nollop off the coast of South Carolina. Nollop was named after Nevin Nollop, author of the immortal pangram, "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog." Now Ella finds herself acting to save her friends, family, and fellow citizens from the encroaching totalitarianism of the island's Council, which has banned the use of certain letters of the alphabet as they fall from a memorial statue of Nevin Nollop. As the letters progressively drop from the statue they also disappear from the novel. The result is both a hilarious and moving story of one girl's fight for freedom of expression, as well as a linguistic tour de force sure to delight word lovers everywhere.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 4 descriptions

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