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'Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving Hardcover – September 1, 1990


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Hardcover, September 1, 1990
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'Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving + Turkey Trouble + Run, Turkey, Run!
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 and up
  • Grade Level: Kindergarten and up
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic (September 1, 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0531059057
  • ISBN-13: 978-0531059050
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 10.3 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #783,284 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Patterned as a parody of the celebrated Clement Moore poem, this story of eight baby turkeys unfolds with joyous abandon and crackling vitality, as eight children embark on a Thanksgiving field trip that will change their lives forever. They are breathless as they catch sight of Farmer Mack Nuggett for the first time: "He was dressed all in denim, / From his head to his toe, / With a pinch of polyester / And a dash of Velcro." The exuberant turkeys--Ollie, Stanley, Larry, Moe, Wally, Beaver and Groucho--catch the children up in raucous barnyard antics until the merriment is quelled by the sight of the ax. Deeply touched by the turkeys' plight, the children--who have grown mysteriously fatter and have feathers sticking out from under their clothes--board the bus to go back to the city. The next night, family silhouettes can be seen--each with a grateful turkey guest--as "They feasted on veggies / With jelly and toast." This humorous, lighthearted story is adorned with bold, bright illustrations that convey a sense of wacky high-spiritedness sometimes lacking in traditional holiday fare. Ages 4-7.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Pilkey has adapted Clement Moore's classic poem for another holiday. The day before Thanksgiving finds eight boys and girls of various races taking a field trip to a turkey farm. Although Farmer Mack Nuggett seems kind at first, the children eventually discover his horrible plan to kill the turkeys for Thanksgiving dinners. Smuggling the turkeys home with them, the children save the birds, who join eight families for vegetarian dinners. The weakest part of this slapstick offering is the verse, in part because the story isn't at all parallel to Moore's and in part because of the stretches in rhyme to accommodate a pre-existing pattern. Some of the word play will escape children. Similarly, visual humor such as the placement of Farmer Nuggett and the teacher in an "American Gothic" pose will remain unappreciated by those too young for Grant Wood. The cartoon illustrations reinforce the story's general silliness but are unremarkable in themselves. Those seeking Thanksgiving humor will better served by Marc Brown's Arthur's Thanksgiving (Little, 1983), while those looking for a human-turkey relationship should dust off Lorna Balian's Sometimes It's Turkey, Sometimes It's Feathers (Abingdon, 1986). --Kathy Piehl, Mankato State University, MN
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

More About the Author

"Considered one of the most popular contemporary authors for readers in elementary school, (Dav Pilkey) is also regarded as a talented artist and inventive humorist as well as a subtle moralist. ...He underscores his works--even at their most outrageous--with a philosophy that emphasizes friendship, tolerance, and generosity and celebrates the triumph of the good-hearted."
-The Educational Book & Media Association

PRAISE FOR CAPTAIN UNDERPANTS:

2013 PARENTS' CHOICE AWARD WINNER -Parents' Choice Foundation

"Combines empowerment and empathy with age-appropriate humor and action" - BOOKLIST

"For every downtrodden fun-seeking kid who never wanted to read a book." - SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL

"(One of the) 5 Books That All Children Should Read" - HEALTHY FAMILY MATTERS

"Call Pilkey . . . the savior of the 'reluctant reader.' " --USA TODAY

Dav Pilkey is the Caldecott Honor Award-winning author and illustrator of more than 50 books for children. Check out his award-winning website at www.Pilkey.com

Customer Reviews

They laugh every time we read it!
Dawn O'toole
The illustrations are cute and the text is fun, funny and has a good rhyme scheme.
Merry Hatebear
I read this book each year to my preschool class and they have all enjoyed it.
W. Seifert

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Jo Blinkey on November 12, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I am not a vegatarian, yet I love this book. It by no means ruins the Thanksgiving tradition, it only gives a comical view as to how a turkey might feel about Thanksgiving. I teach kindergarten and my class wants me to read this story over and over!
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 18, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This is one of my favorite of all children's books. It's silly and touching, a difficult combination to achieve. The words and the pictures are perfect together. It gets people in touch with that childlike side that remembers what it's like when we first make that connection between food and a living creature.
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24 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Endfinity on November 13, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving follows the rhythm of Twas the Night Before Christmas, and this is definitely a book that should be read out loud. I'm sending this with my son to school so his teacher can read it to the class. I've told her about it, and she and the class are waiting for it! One of my favorite illustrations is where the children are hugging the happy little turkeys. (No, NOT a reality, but this is a CHILDREN'S book. We save a little reality for them later in Catcher In The Rye.) Also, I love the illustration of the children, suddenly turned all chubby, with turkey feathers sticking out from under their coats. Hmmm...

Maybe some of the naysayers of this book should stop and consider some old favorites. Snow White committed breaking and entering. Do they warn their children that they should not break into people's house and randomly clean, like Snow White? My goodness! We might have a nation of pint-sized bandits, compulsively cleaning stranger's houses...

And my eight year old son STILL does not like turkey at Thanksgiving, without reading Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving. He likes the mashed potatoes and stuffing, no matter how much I try to hide the turkey with the mashed potatoes...

Dav Pilkey is such a wonderful writer/illustrator of children's books. You should definitely check out his website, [...] Mr. Pilkey, by the way, was not vegetarian when he wrote this or trying to send any "hippie, liberal" message. He's just an adult-sized kid who writes an entertaining book.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Father on November 24, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As vegetarians of a 4 year old, we have been looking for books and videos/dvd's on thanksgiving that put' much less focus on eating turkey. We have tried to raise our child as a thoughtful vegetarian. Meaning, we realize we are still very much in the minority and most everyone he knows eats meat. I don't want to program him in such as way where he his openly criticizing people eating meat. This entertaining book also creates thoughtful discussion of why we choose not to eat meat but also realizing most others do. Parts of the book may be a bit inappropriate for younger children as there is a farmer wielding an ax. BUT overall it's a good book with great illustrations.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 17, 2003
Format: Hardcover
My kids and I love this book. Written in the style of 'Twas the Night before Christmas...a group of school children are taken on a field trip. "When what with their wondering eyes should they see, but a miniature farm and eight tiny turkey."
A very sweet, non-violent story!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 13, 1998
Format: Hardcover
This book is great for kids to see where exactly their turkey dinner comes from! A lot of us take for granted that our food is just there - not what has to be done to get it there and this is a delightful story for young and old alike. It is truely the essence of being thankful for animals.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Jan Pierce on November 17, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I love Dav Pilkey's 'Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving! I teach a Montessori public school class of first, second and third graders, and I also happen to be a vegan. I want my students to know the truth about where food comes from, and this book helps teach them that turkey dinners don't grow on trees! I love the illustrations, from the chubby teacher and her peace-sign earrings, to the Starry Night background (a good bridge for studying the work and life of Van Gogh!) It has become a Thanksgiving tradition for me.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Barbara Friel (barbtod@nni.com) on November 11, 1999
Format: Hardcover
While I was in college, I read this book to a kindergarten class. The students thought it was very funny! However, they were not the only ones who enjoyed this silly story. My professor, my fellow classmate (and me too) as well as the other teachers in the room were thoroughly enjoying the book as much as the children. I loved the book so much that I just ordered for myself. This is a story to share with your own children!
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