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The Phantom Tollbooth (1961)

by Norton Juster

Other authors: Jules Feiffer (Illustrator)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
17,550425290 (4.3)2 / 455
A journey through a land where Milo learns the importance of words and numbers provides a cure for his boredom.
  1. 111
    Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll (Death_By_Papercut)
    Death_By_Papercut: A child enters a strange new world.
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    The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente (aarti, calmclam)
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    Un Lun Dun by China Miéville (Phantasma, elbakerone, heidialice)
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    Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie (RRHowell, calmclam)
    RRHowell: Both are clever allegorical fantasies.
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    Momo by Michael Ende (souloftherose)
    souloftherose: Both are wonderful old-fashioned children's stories with a deeper message - as a result they both reward reading by adults too.
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    Abarat by Clive Barker (Death_By_Papercut)
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    The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There by Catherynne M. Valente (TomWaitsTables)
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    A Barrel of Laughs, A Vale of Tears by Jules Feiffer (suzanney)
  11. 20
    The Lost Track of Time by Paige Britt (JanesList)
    JanesList: If you liked the Phantom Tollbooth (which admittedly, I didn't like as much) you will probably also like this book. It has some of the same feel because it is also a journey to another (kindof random but with its own logic) world to learn things about yourself and your own world.… (more)
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    The Pirates' Mixed-up Voyage by Margaret Mahy (FFortuna)
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    Dear Dolphin by Herbert Kenny (bmlg)
    bmlg: a quest with clever wordplay and whimsical personified ideas
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    No Passengers Beyond This Point by Gennifer Choldenko (kaledrina)
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    The Bookstore Mouse by Peggy Christian (_Zoe_)
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1960s (49)
1970s (623)
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» See also 455 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 422 (next | show all)
This was my very favorite book when I was a kid and rereading it as an adult was just as magical. It makes you want to have so many adventures and learn everything there is to learn. I may have even gotten a bit misty eyed remembering how much this story had always meant to me. A must read for everyone everywhere. ( )
  rknickme | Mar 31, 2024 |
I read this book because I saw Dominic Noble do a "Lost in adaptation" episode comparing this book to the Chuck Jones cartoon and for some reason reacted to that with "Chuck Jones is one of my favourite animators, I Should read the book that inspired that cartoon of his that i have never seen or heard of until now"reaching

anyway, I found the book very clever and I appreciated the wordplay commitment ( )
  LadyLast | Mar 11, 2024 |
Life
  BooksInMirror | Feb 19, 2024 |
So sad I didn't read this in school though I'm sure the assignments would have taken the magic away. Rainn Wilson reading the audiobook was just perfect. ( )
  hellokirsti | Jan 3, 2024 |
For Milo, everything's a bore. When a tollbooth mysteriously appears in his room, he drives through only because he's got nothing better to do. But on the other side, things seem different. Milo visits the Island of Conclusions (you get there by jumping), learns about time from a ticking watchdog named Tock, and even embarks on a quest to rescue Rhyme and Reason. Somewhere along the way, Milo realizes something astonishing: Life is far from dull. In fact, it's exciting beyond his wildest dreams!
  PlumfieldCH | Dec 9, 2023 |
Showing 1-5 of 422 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (17 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Juster, Nortonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Feiffer, JulesIllustratorsecondary 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
Wilson, RainnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
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Important events
Related movies
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.
The only thing you can do easily is be wrong, and that's hardly worth the effort.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Please distinguish between this LT Work, which is Norton Juster's original The Phantom Tollbooth (1961), and the edition annotated by Leonard Marcus (2011). Thank you.
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS
Canonical LCC

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

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

No library descriptions found.

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)

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Average: (4.3)
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1 26
1.5 5
2 96
2.5 19
3 429
3.5 69
4 1031
4.5 149
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