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The Annotated Phantom Tollbooth Hardcover – October 25, 2011


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers (October 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 037585715X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375857157
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 1.1 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #51,976 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

NORTON JUSTER is an architect and the author of other highly acclaimed children's books, including The Dot and the Line, which was made into an Academy Award-winning film,  The Hello, Goodbye Window, illustrated by Chris Raschka, which received the Caldecott Medal, and The Odious Ogre, also illustrated by Jules Feiffer.  Mr. Juster lives with his wife in Western Massachusetts.

JULES FEIFFER is the author and illustrator of two novels for young readers, as well as several acclaimed picture books including Bark, George, and Meanwhile. . . . He has won numerous prizes for his cartoons, plays, and screenplays. Mr. Feiffer lives in New York City.

More About the Author

Norton Juster is an architect and planner, professor emeritus of design at Hampshire College, and the author of a number of highly acclaimed children's books, including The Dot and the Line, which was made into an Academy Award-winning animated film. He has collaborated with Sheldon Harnick on the libretto for an opera based on The Phantom Tollbooth. The musical adaptation, with a score by Arnold Black, premiered in 1995 and will soon be performed in schools and theaters nationwide. An amateur cook and professional eater, Mr. Juster lives with his wife in Amherst, Massachusetts.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Still FUN and clever.
Eclectic Reader
The annotated version added a whole other dimension to my enjoyment of it!
Kathryn Lusco
This is among the all-time best children's books!
A. Collinsworth

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

43 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Esther Hershenhorn on November 7, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I consider THE ANNOTATED PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH a five-star Twofer. There's Norton Juster's original and beloved text, of course, accompanied by Jules Feiffer's original illustrations, which causes the reader to smile, guffaw and laugh out loud, not to mention marvel at and laud the extraordinarily delicious language. But then bordering that text is Leonard Marcus' gracefully-written exposition, opening the door to the story's Back Story - its Who, What, When, Where, How and Why, as well as Juster's and Feiffer's Back Stories too. Readers will smile, guffaw and laugh out loud a second time and heap even more praise once they see the process - i.e. Juster's original word lists, character write-ups and early drafts as well as Jules Feiffer's original sketches and learn how these two friends brought Milo to the page at a singular time in our country's history. The writer in me, the reader in me, the teacher I am and my inner child enthusiastically HURRAH! and give Marcus a thumbs up for this insightful,informative and funny look at a true classic.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer Wrenn on December 8, 2011
Format: Hardcover
As both a longtime "Tollbooth" fan and admirer of historian Leonard Marcus's always thorough and insightful work, I have been eagerly awaiting the publication of the "Annotated" edition. I was thrilled to find it's just as terrific as anticipated. Filled with interesting notes, sketches, and personal photos from both Juster and Feiffer (as well as a fascinating Appendix section containing such rare gems as Juster's handwritten character and word lists and handwritten manuscript drafts), this delightful edition does just what an annotated version of a well-loved text should -- it successfully opens up our understanding of the original source material in a new way while simultaneously increasing our appreciation of it. With a keen eye and a light touch, Marcus illuminates this beloved work with just the right amount of detail, expertly addressing the clever idioms, puns, and other elements that make "Tollbooth" such a classic of children's literature. The beautiful, well-considered design and easy-to-read text ensure that this edition will please fans of the book in addition to those who have the luck of discovering it for the very first time. One of my favorite books of 2011 and a perfect addition to any children's book collection!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By B. McDonald on November 9, 2011
Format: Hardcover
The story of how architect Norman Juster, after being awarded a prestigious Ford Foundation grant to write a children's book on urban planning, came to write THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH could support a book in itself. Marcus delights the readers of THE ANNOTATED PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH by relating the history of the creation of THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH by Juster and its illustrator, Jules Feiffer, as well as countless other details sure to hold the attention of the reader. This book is a must-have for those who grew up reading the children's book masterpiece, and also for anyone who loves knowing the story behind the story, and all who appreciate word play and timeless humor. Marcus's insightful observations and research discoveries are printed in blue in the margins,making them easily differentiated from the original text of Juster's book.
Those who missed the fun of reading THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH as children can buy THE ANNOTATED PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH and double their pleasure. Read the book and learn why it is still in print after fifty years!
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful By John Baker on April 20, 2012
Format: Hardcover
It should be understood that my three-star rating refers to this annotated edition, and not to The Phantom Tollbooth, which deserves five stars forever. This is an attractive edition, and it includes an excellent introduction that provides fascinating background on the book. The annotations themselves, however, add little. Rather, one senses that the editor was desperately adding irrelevant tidbits in a futile attempt to disguise the fact that the book neither requires nor benefits from annotations.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Patrick Worrell on January 2, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I haven't gotten very far in the book yet but I've already greatly enjoyed the forward which had a history of the author and the illustrator. Even just a few pages in to the story itself, I'm finding the sidebar annotations to be interesting.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Simmel Haim on May 20, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I loved reading the book to my children many moons ago and found the annoted version a delight! A friend had given me the name of Norton Juster in the fifties and I purchased the book back then. My husband enjoyed reading the book a chapter at a time when the kids were young and they all could not wait for the next chapter. They would beg him to read just one more chapter each night.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Eclectic Reader on February 14, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Since the seventh grade. I LOVED it even when I was in college.

And now that I'm 62, I've rediscovered it. Still FUN and clever. And in this beautiful hardcover annotated edition even more interesting.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kathryn Lusco on July 13, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A wonderful book. Just discovered Phantom Tollbooth as an older adult who's also a word lover. Found it full of fun and wit. The annotated version added a whole other dimension to my enjoyment of it!
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