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The Hungriest Boy in the World Hardcover – March 14, 2001

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Namioka (The Laziest Boy in the World) pens another amusing original tale, this one set in Japan. Jiro's bad habit of putting everything in his mouth causes him to swallow the Hunger Monster. Suddenly the boy is ravenous, indiscriminately wolfing down everything from sushi to fishing nets ("They looked like noodles, delicious noodles, seasoned with soy sauce"), his quilt, a floor cushion--whatever comes within his reach. When a doctor is called, Jiro gobbles down all his medicines. When a medium is consulted, Jiro tries to eat her hair--though not before she fingers the Hunger Monster as the culprit. Finally, Jiro's brother suggests they call in a puppet master, who tricks the creature into leaving Jiro's stomach. Namioka's light, comic touch extends to her jaunty pacing, setting a tone that Sogabe (The Loyal Cat) extends with her stylish cut-paper, watercolor and airbrush illustrations. Set in an old-world Japan complete with kimonos and forest temples, and peopled with chunky, heavily outlined figures, her airy compositions underscore the folktale aura, while the impossibly fat-cheeked Jiro steals every scene. Ages 4-8.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

K-Gr 3-Jiro, a Japanese boy, has a bad habit. He puts everything in his mouth, be it seashells, seaweed, or sushi. When the child accidentally swallows the Hunger Monster, his troubles and readers' fun begin. Jiro's appetite runs rampant, and he consumes everything from fish guts and netting to his own bed quilt. His parents frantically seek assistance from the doctor, the village priest, and a medium, as Jiro snacks on the doctor's medicines, the priest's prayer beads, and the medium's hair. The situation eventually reaches a clever and happy solution. The story is told economically but with wit and humor. Sogabe's illustrations, created using cut paper over rice paper that has been colored by airbrush or watercolor, complement the text with their elegant simplicity. Pair this tale with Jim Aylesworth's The Full Belly Bowl (Atheneum, 1999) for a discussion of the hazards of excess, incorporate it into multicultural units, or enjoy it for sheer fun.-Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 and up
  • Grade Level: Preschool and up
  • Lexile Measure: 380L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Holiday House; 1st edition (March 14, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0823415422
  • ISBN-13: 978-0823415427
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 8.8 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,911,929 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By Damon Levy on January 27, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book for my 3-year old daughter. It's definitely a quirky story that does not follow traditional storytelling, but the illustrations are great and it has a happy ending.
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