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Big Fat Little Lit (Picture Puffin Books) Paperback – September 7, 2006

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Art Spiegelman is a cartoonist who first came to attention in the early 1980s as editor of the magazine Raw. His books include the Pulitzer Prize-winning Holocaust story Maus, Maus II, and In the Shadow of No Towers. He lives in New York City with his wife and two children.


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 and up
  • Grade Level: Kindergarten and up
  • Series: Picture Puffin Books
  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin; First Edition edition (September 7, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0142407062
  • ISBN-13: 978-0142407066
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 0.6 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #143,753 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on December 15, 2006
Format: Paperback
Let's say that you've heard of the "Little Lit" books, edited by Art Spiegelman and his wife Francoise Mouly, but that you've never actually gone so far as to pick one up. Let us also say, while we are at it, that you are aware of the massive loads of talent that have gone into the series, but that this was still not quite enough to draw you in. Well, my lovelies, I have an answer for you. Like yourself, I somehow managed to catch a snatch of a comic strip here or a lovingly drawn panel there without actually sitting down and reading the "Little Lit" books cover to cover. Then, out of the bright blue sky, "Big Fat Little Lit" falls into my lap. So I read it through with not a little skepticism. Truth be told, I've always suspected that the books were written for adults rather than children. You can cast a book in a childish shell and claim your artists are working with the younger set in mind but will kids actually read what you create? Slowly I've come to the conclusion that yes, there is definitely an audience for this series that is under the age of 21. Still, if you're gonna hand them a "Little Lit" collection, better to go for the best. Give them a compendium of selected past works. Give them "Big Fat Little Lit", the best of the best, and save yourself some time.

Behold before you thirty-six comics created by thirty-three "of the world's most beloved authors and artists", or so says the backflap. Compiled from parts of the three "Little Lit" collections already in existence (with some extra goodies for spice) "Big Fat Little Lit" has it all. Ghouls and fools and fables both traditional and with a twist all working together to fill this 144 page beauty.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Anne B. Levy on December 20, 2006
Format: Paperback
This collection--culled from three previous Little Lit anthologies--is, of course, literary and brilliant and oh-so-eclectic, and if you know nothing about the genre, it's an easy intro. Fairy tales nestle comfortably next to horror stories and folklore, and my four-year-old easily adapted to the diverse narrative styles and voices: after all, he could SEE the differences.

Looking at the big picture, pardon the pun, I was struck by how many were told with forceful moral underpinnings. More than a few protagonists must face the gloomy consequences of their misdeeds and I didn't spot a single story where evil prevailed. Naughtiness, maybe, but not genuine eat-your-family badness.

That's not to say it's all goody-two-shoes fluff. Like the original Grimm's Fairy Tales, many of these tales venture into nightmare territory, where mothers-in-law try to devour grandchildren, stuffy noses explode with dopplegangers and cute kitties come from alternate worlds, and little that seems comfortable and safe turns out to be so.

I get the distinct impression these are stories written by actual parents who have braved the wild terrain of a child's imagination to chart both its twisted roads and startling flora.
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Format: Paperback
"Big Fat Little Lit" is a greatest hits collection. It's advertised as appropriate for ages nine to twelve, but you have to wonder about that. ("Our audience is all ages --- even though children's book publishing doesn't like that," says Mouly.) Some of it is just dandy for our six-year-old. Most of it will delight any media-savvy `tween. But its greatest appeal is surely to adults, who may buy it as an ultra-hip coffee table book, only to discover it is the Fountain of Youth.

In this world, attitude counts. Which isn't to say the morals of these little tales are negative in any way. They're just... twisted. Not surprising when the contributors include David Sedaris, Gahan Wilson, Maurice Sendak, Jules Feiffer and the cream of the alt-comix set.

For example: "The Hungry Horse" is the sad tale of a critter that will work so long as it isn't fed --- of course, after a decade, a farmer tosses the nag a crust of bread. There is a "Hasidic parable" and a story of a "fairy godfather". In a retelling of "The Princess and the Pea", after the prince rejects 1,628 princesses, someone comments, "Perhaps he can't make a commitment." A creepy face becomes frozen in the backwards world of "Pretty Ugly". A gingerbread man escapes every pursuer but a fox, who catches him by pretending to be deaf. When Jack's beanstalk grows, someone says, "There goes the view."

And there are bonus pages. A picture asks you to identify "22 odd things." Another challenges you to "Find the Twins". And there's a "Joke page", with a moral that our little one might have devised: "He who laughs last thinks the slowest."

Be swift.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Barb F. on March 23, 2010
Format: Paperback
I really loved this book. I found it in my favorite used books store. The book was in excellent shape--by the way. I was looking through the graphic novel shelf, and came upon this treasure. It says it is for children grades 3 and 4..but I think an adult would love it as much as I have. It will stay in my graphic novel collection. I will be looking for more Big Fat Little Lit books.

I hope you enjoy the book as much as I did/do.

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