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The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
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The Phantom Tollbooth (original 1961; edition 2008)

by Norton Juster

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
10,442319274 (4.31)1 / 349
Member:goodwaterreader
Title:The Phantom Tollbooth
Authors:Norton Juster
Info:Harper Collins Children's Books (2008), Edition: New Ed, Paperback, 272 pages
Collections:Your library, English
Rating:****
Tags:None

Work details

The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster (Author) (1961)

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Showing 1-5 of 318 (next | show all)
This book was so witty! I loved all the play on words and the whole concept of the story! It's genius! ( )
  smilez4u1390 | Jun 30, 2016 |
This book is absolutely fantastic! I can't believe I missed it as a kid. My six-year-old declared it one of the best books he's ever read, tied with The Secret Garden. This book was so creative and imaginative, hilarious, and chock full of puns and word play. Running all through it was a delightful theme and message. A very satisfying tale. For the first time ever, my son wanted to immediately reread it. It is the kind of book that I'm sure subsequent reads will tease out even more things you didn't fully appreciate on the first go. I know this will be one we reread over and over in the coming years. ( )
  eslee | Jun 17, 2016 |
One of my absolute favorite fables as a child - loved the stimulating word- & logic- play. Re-read it last year and still loved it. My now 14 yo read it twice, and he's not nearly as avid a reader as I.

Re-read it yet again for a book discussion group. Caught yet another play on words. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
This is a classic story that allows the reader to follow a child from not appreciating what he has around him to realizing all that is available as long as he looks.
  gregresch | Jun 5, 2016 |
This is like Jasper Fforde for the younger crowd. If you've read Fforde, then you know what I'm talking about, quick references, double meanings, play on words, things like that. If you haven't then you'll just have to take my word for it. This was very sweet, very cute and very smart. I loved all the characters Milo meets on his journey, especially Tock, I giggled whenever his alarm went off. I think this would be a great one to read in classrooms, and am sad we never did when I was in school. Read it, you'll enjoy it! ( )
  Jen_Bartels | May 31, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 318 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Juster, NortonAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Feiffer, JulesIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Dietz, NormanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Grant, MelCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jones, Diana WynneIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pierce, David HydeNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sendak, MauriceIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
To Andy and Kenny,
who waited so patiently
First words
There was once a boy named Milo who didn't know what to do with himself—not just sometimes, but always.
Quotations
"You must never feel badly about making mistakes," explained Reason quietly," as long as you take the trouble to learn from them. For you often learn more by being wrong for the right reasons than you do by being right for the wrong reasons."
Well, since you got here by not thinking, it seems reasonable to expect that, in order to get out, you must start thinking.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Please distinguish between this LT Work, Norton Juster's original The Phantom Tollbooth (1961), and the edition annotated by Leonard Marcus (2011). Thank you.
Publisher's editors
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Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (3)

Book description
The Phantom Tollbooth tells the story of a bored young boy named Milo who unexpectedly receives a magic tollbooth one afternoon and, having nothing better to do, decides to drive through it in his toy car. The tollbooth transports him to a land called the Kingdom of Wisdom. There he acquires two faithful companions, has many adventures, and goes on a quest to rescue the princesses of the kingdom from the castle of air, Princess Rhyme and Princess Reason. The text is full of puns, and many events, such as Milo's jump to the Island of Conclusions, exemplify literal meanings of English language idioms.
Haiku summary
A quite boring boy,
goes on a great adventure,
and he is changed a lot.
(Firefox-Flame_dancer)

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0394820371, Paperback)

"It seems to me that almost everything is a waste of time," Milo laments. "[T]here's nothing for me to do, nowhere I'd care to go, and hardly anything worth seeing." This bored, bored young protagonist who can't see the point to anything is knocked out of his glum humdrum by the sudden and curious appearance of a tollbooth in his bedroom. Since Milo has absolutely nothing better to do, he dusts off his toy car, pays the toll, and drives through. What ensues is a journey of mythic proportions, during which Milo encounters countless odd characters who are anything but dull.

Norton Juster received (and continues to receive) enormous praise for this original, witty, and oftentimes hilarious novel, first published in 1961. In an introductory "Appreciation" written by Maurice Sendak for the 35th anniversary edition, he states, "The Phantom Tollbooth leaps, soars, and abounds in right notes all over the place, as any proper masterpiece must." Indeed.

As Milo heads toward Dictionopolis he meets with the Whether Man ("for after all it's more important to know whether there will be weather than what the weather will be"), passes through The Doldrums (populated by Lethargarians), and picks up a watchdog named Tock (who has a giant alarm clock for a body). The brilliant satire and double entendre intensifies in the Word Market, where after a brief scuffle with Officer Short Shrift, Milo and Tock set off toward the Mountains of Ignorance to rescue the twin Princesses, Rhyme and Reason. Anyone with an appreciation for language, irony, or Alice in Wonderland-style adventure will adore this book for years on end. (Ages 8 and up)

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:43 -0400)

(see all 9 descriptions)

A journey through a land where Milo learns the importance of words and numbers provides a cure for his boredom.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 9 descriptions

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