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The Gingerbread Man Hardcover – March 25, 2002

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

That baked-goods scamp stars in another retelling, and although his creators (the little old man and woman), his taunting refrain ("Run, run, as fast as you can,/ You can't catch me,/ I'm the gingerbread man") and his fate (being gobbled by a clever fox) remain the same, Jones (What's the Time, Mr. Wolf?) adds two nifty twists. One is narrative: the Gingerbread Man's pursuers are characters from Mother Goose, including Little Boy Blue, the Grand Old Duke of York and Little Miss Muffet. The other is novelty: a die-cut window on each spread gives a hint about who the next person on the cookie's trail will be (thus, on a spread where the Gingerbread Man teases Humpty-Dumpty, an opening on the opposite page reveals a tiny figure in a haystack who turns out to be Little Boy Blue). Jones's whisper-thin, meticulous ink detailings and soft, translucent colors bring to mind vintage tinted engravings, but some readers may be frustrated by the surplus of minutiae and the drawings' apparent lack of focus. Unfortunately, Jones never really captures the Gingerbread Man's brassy flatness or his effervescent insolence. For a more successful effort, see James Aylesworth and Barbara McClintock's 1998 version. Ages 4-8.

Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

reschool-Grade 2--A fairly straightforward retelling of the familiar tale with minutely detailed and intriguing illustrations. In Jones's version, the gingerbread man encounters various nursery-rhyme characters: Humpty Dumpty, Little Boy Blue, the Grand Old Duke of York, etc. As in several of the artist's earlier books, the format includes die-cut holes in every other page through which readers can spy the next character, and, with a turn of the page, the one being left behind. The folktale plays out against lovely soft watercolor and pen-and-ink depictions of an idyllic English countryside, with hundreds of amusing details to pore over, and a fox that appears ever closer in several pictures. The insouciant gingerbread man skips through the pages with glee, until he meets his expected demise at the end. Following the story is a recipe for making one's own gingerbread man along with the admonition to "eat him before he runs away!" There are several very good versions of this tale in existence, including the traditional classic by Paul Galdone (The Gingerbread Boy [Clarion, 1979]) and the Jim Aylesworth/Barbara McClintock collaboration (Scholastic, 1998). However, this one is unique because of its format and intricate illustrations as well as its twist. Although the book will not lend itself for use in large storytimes, it promises to be great fun for one-on-one reading.
Judith Constantinides, formerly at East Baton Rouge Parish Main Library, LA
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers (March 25, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0618188223
  • ISBN-13: 978-0618188222
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 10.3 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,743,473 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca In Red on July 15, 2011
Format: Hardcover
My kids love Mother Goose rhymes and were excited that their favorite characters showed up in this book. The illustrations are detailed and beautiful. We especially enjoyed the peek-through pages. The recipe for Gingerbread at the back of the book encouraged a great follow-up activity. My children loved eating their gingerbread men while we re-read the book.
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8 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Kindle Customer on February 8, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was very disappointed that I did not receive this book until January. I had ordered 5 or 6 versions of "The Gingerbread Man" in Dec. All the other books came in a timely manner. The book itself is made of the thinnest paper I've ever experienced. I teach kindergarten and this is one book that I will not be able to put on the bookshelf for the children to actually look at.
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