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M.T. Anderson's Thrilling Tales - Whales On Stilts Hardcover – 2005

26 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 188 pages
  • Publisher: Harcourt, Inc. (2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0152053409
  • ISBN-13: 978-0152053406
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 5.4 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,253,092 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

M. T. Anderson is the author of The Game of Sunken Places, Burger Wuss, Thirsty, and Feed, which was a finalist for the National Book Award, a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Book and the winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Young Adult Fiction. He lives in Boston, Massachusetts.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

41 of 42 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on December 8, 2004
Format: Hardcover
A got an advanced reader's copy to review through a library program, and at first I was turned off by how "little-kidish" (short, small, and double spaced), but within moments, I couldn't put it down. You don't have to be a young kid to enjoy this - in fact, the older (and, I'm assuming, wiser) you are, the more allusions you're likely to catch.

With chapter titles like, "What You Can Learn From Larry's Teeth," and a quick, witty writing style, you can't help but laugh and read on. Although it is soon obvious how the ending will turn out, it doesn't seem to matter while you're reading it; the reason why Whales on Stilts! stands out from other books is not its complex plot, but its halirity.

Don't miss it... or the whales will crush your home and shoot lasers from their eyes at you.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Fluffy Sausage on May 24, 2005
Format: Hardcover
A got an advanced reader's copy to review through a library program, and at first I was turned off by how "little-kidish" (short, small, and double spaced), but within moments, I couldn't put it down. You don't have to be a young kid to enjoy this - in fact, the older (and, I'm assuming, wiser) you are, the more allusions you're likely to catch.

With chapter titles like, "What You Can Learn From Larry's Teeth," and a quick, witty writing style, you can't help but laugh and read on. Although it is soon obvious how the ending will turn out, it doesn't seem to matter while you're reading it; the reason why Whales on Stilts! stands out from other books is not its complex plot, but its halirity.

Don't miss it... or the whales will crush your home and shoot lasers from their eyes at you.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Elena on May 5, 2005
Format: Hardcover
"On Career Day Lily visited her dad's work with him and discovered he worked for a mad scientist who wanted to rule the earth through destruction and desolation." Lily Gefelty has always considered herself a little drab next to her friends Katie Mulligan and Jasper Dash, who each have their own adventure book series. But when Lily uncovers a plot to take over the world at her fathers workplace in the clearly labeled Abandoned Warehouse, it's her turn to step into the limelight and save the planet. Cleverly masked as "a midsize company devoted to expanding cetacean pedestrian opportunities," the goings on in the Abandoned Warehouse are not what they seem (er, actually...). Lily and her friends discover that Mr. Gefelty's boss, Larry, is really a whale-human hybrid intent on destroying the world using whales, stilts, lazers, and mind control. And it's up to Lily to stop him.

At first glance, you may think that "Whales on Stilts" is a silly, cheesy story geared towards ten-year-olds. You'd be right. However, "Whales on Stilts" goes so far beyond cheesy that it's positively hilarious for readers of any age, ten on up. If Douglas Adams had made a foray into juvenile fiction, this uproarious book may have been the result. Lily is so normal that she's the perfect main character to put into such a ridiculously overdone book. The other characters are uniquely strange in their own rights. The plot is straightforward and wouldn't be interesting at all in other circumstances, but the story is so stuffed with hilarity that the obvious and cliche plot is perfect. The best part of the book, in my opinion, actually occurs after the ending - an "educational" section written by one Ann Mowbray Dixon-Clarke, who seems to have a bit of trouble writing objectively ("1.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By ryansmom93 on July 21, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I had to read this book for myself after my eleven year old son was reading it and laughing through the entire thing. I found the book amusing and interesting. Perfect for my son and his age group. Parts in the story were educational. I enjoyed it and we are waiting for the next book to come out in August.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By LonestarReader on September 13, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I so admire a great opening:

"On Career Day Lily visited her dad's work with him and discovered he worked for a mad scientist who wanted to rule the earth through destruction and desolation. Up until then life hadn't been very interesting for Lily."

Lily Gefelty is the only one who seems to understand that her father's weird boss, Larry is planning to take over the world using whales on stilts with lasers in their eyes. She is helped by her friend Katie Mulligan, a Nancy Drew/Buffy type whose real life adventures are serialized in Horror Hollow Books (Goosebumps/Fear Street) and Jasper Dash, Boy Technonaut (Tom Swift à la Orphan Annie selling Ovaltine, only here it is Gargletine) who sports vintage clothing and turns of phrase from a bygone era.

In the great tradition of children's books, the parents are hilariously clueless. Her father does not think it odd that Larry, the boss, wears a sack over his features, has a flipper-like hand, dumps green brine over his head and openly admits his plan for world domination might interfere with the Gefelty family vacation plans.

The story is over-the-top fun, bizarre, strange yet traditional and conventional with behind the scenes publishing humor...
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jessica Lux on September 1, 2005
Format: Hardcover
This fantastic tale takes place in an alternate reality where corporate men don't question bosses who have flippers under their business suit and dump sea water over their head to get refreshed, where kids gather at a restaurant that floats in the area, where a photocopy machine powered by a mule doesn't raise eyebrows in the office. It's a wacky and fun ride, and the reader will find themselves sucked in by the "Monstrous Thrills! Gruesome Chills! Sidesplitting Laughs!"

The unconventional format of this short novel makes it a true winner. It is complete with black and white illustrations of the unbelievable characters and events. The narrator speaks directly to the reader in asides and laugh-out-loud stream-of-consciousness footnotes. Plus, when the story ends, the author throughfull provides an offbeat reader's guide and list of ridiculous essay questions, along with an author interview. Parents and children will enjoy reading this book together.
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