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Comment: Eligible for *FREE* Super Saver Shipping! Excellent customer service, qualifies for Amazon A to Z satisfaction. All pages and cover are intact (including the dust cover, if applicable). Spine may show signs of wear. Pages may include limited notes and highlighting. May include "From the library of" labels.
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What Do You Say, Dear? Paperback – September 25, 1986


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What Do You Say, Dear? + What Do You Do, Dear?
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Lexile Measure: 530L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 48 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Reprint edition (September 25, 1986)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0064431126
  • ISBN-13: 978-0064431125
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 8.2 x 0.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #44,366 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

"You have gone downtown to do some shopping. You are walking backwards, because sometimes you like to, and you bump into a crocodile. What do you say, dear?" This is just one of the delightful hypothetical situations introduced by award-winning author Sesyle Joslin in this "handbook of etiquette for young ladies and gentlemen to be used as a guide for everyday social behavior." Maurice Sendak's quirky, comical illustrations are perfect for this old-fashioned, whimsical guide to manners. First published in 1958, this Caldecott Honor Book and ALA Notable Children's Book is a time- tested, fun way to teach your children important lessons. By the way, "Excuse me" is the proper response to the crocodile above! (Ages 4 to 8)

From the Back Cover

Delightfully absurd situations and elegant and exceedingly funny illustrations. For this encyclopedia of manners, there is just one thing possible to say and that is, "Thank you, thank you very much."

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Customer Reviews

I read it over and over and laughed just as much each time.
Amazon Customer
This is an excellent book for teaching manners,using lots of unusual situations.
After His Heart
The illustrations by Maurice Sendak are great, and the story is very witty.
"formetoknow"

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on September 28, 2000
Format: School & Library Binding
I read this book in 1963 when I was 8 years old (for all you math wizards, yes, I'm 45) I was a voracious reader and this one book stands out above all the others as my most memorable read. I read it over and over and laughed just as much each time. I read it to anyone who would sit still for me and even now, when I hear some ask some insane question like "Would you like me to shoot you in the head?", I think back to my early training and say, "No thank you!" I credit this book for helping form my young personality and believe in all sincerity that I have the warped sense of humor that I do because of my exposure to this book. Get it, read it and then, if they are very polite, share it with your kids!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 4, 1998
Format: Library Binding
Years after reading this book from cover to cover, over and over again as a child, I still smile when I think of the appropriate response to Bad Bart's inquiry "Would you like me to blow a hole in your head?" (A polite smile, and a simple "no, thank you!" as you ride off into the sunset...) The author presents one scenario after another of children in adult "dress up" trying on the roles of appropriate adult interaction in a surreal world of bad guys, bears, and top-hatted talking alligators, made even more interesting by the eccentric behaviors of the "adults" (walking backwards downtown, landing airplanes in parlors, and so forth). Somehow, it all made hilarious, yet deep and satisfying sense to me when I was a little girl. Sendak's illustrations are half the fun!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By LonestarReader VINE VOICE on August 4, 2006
Format: Paperback
Without a doubt the most sublime of all manners books are the classic What Do You Say, Dear? and What Do you Do, Dear? by Sesyle Joslin with sly and witty illustrations by Maurice Sendak. No matter how improbable or bizarre the circumstances, good manners should always prevail. Kids today do not hear this book as often as they do franchise character manner books. This should be mandatory reading for all children. It is too much fun to miss.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Susan B. on November 30, 2001
Format: Paperback
I loved this book the moment I read it. Maurice Sendak's hilarious and wonderful illustrations are a perfect match with Joslin's words. Humor is a great way to help children remember lessons, and "What Do You Say, Dear" is filled with funny /memorable scenarios that you and your loved ones will never tire of reading over and over again.
(...)
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 22, 2000
Format: Paperback
My 6 yr. old son loves this book and thinks it is hilarious and so do I! He loves to guess the answer after each funny instance and then see if he guessed it right. He's old enough to know that these are not real situations (like dropping in on the dutchess from an airplane through her roof or cutting off a dragon's head!) We just think it's very funny and actually helps him remember what to say to be polite. I think some of the other reviewers should lighten up and not take this so seriously!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By "formetoknow" on July 15, 2003
Format: Library Binding
I am so glad to find this book on Amazon.com! I believe this book went out of print for a few years and was near impossible to find. This was my favorite children's book as a little girl. I used to make my older sister read it over and over again (Actually, I was the little sister, so I couldn't make her. She's just a good big sister.) The illustrations by Maurice Sendak are great, and the story is very witty. However, children will still get a health dose of good manners. I can't recommend this book enough!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 23, 2000
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A classic book of manners for children of all ages, using outlandish situations to make the point. You accidentally crash your plane into your friend the duchess's house. What do you say, dear? "Pardon me; I'm terribly sorry." And so on, hilariously. As some of the other posts note, our little hero is threatened at gunpoint by Black Bart, but since the hero also buys a baby elephant on a street corner and hobnobs with royalty, children are able to recognize this as fiction--they only take with them the laughter and good instruction in proper manners. Thank heavens this book is still in print! Your children will adore it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By prussianette on July 2, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book as well as The Blueberry Pie Elf were the two books I remember from my first grade experience. When my sister-in-law's baby shower came along with the request we bring a copy of our favorite childhood book, I bought this as The Blueberry Pie Elf is impossible to find. My sister-in-law was tickled pink as she, too, remembered this as a child. And, yes, those of you who cringe at anything approaching "violence" even in a comedic situation will not find this book acceptable, especially with the question about what to do if a cowboy asks you if you want to get shot in the head, but remember it was a different era when this was written. And since most of us do not have cowboys riding horses wildly down the street while swinging guns around, I think most children will take this in the light it was written. Besides, I didn't even remember this passage until I re-read the book. The one I remember most from my childhood is the one referring to somebody asking you over for a spaghetti dinner and what to say after every course has been spaghetti, and then they bring out spaghetti for dessert. (I'll leave out the answer, as I don't want to ruin the suspense for those who wish to read the book.)
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