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King Hugo's Huge Ego Hardcover – July 26, 2011

4.8 out of 5 stars 39 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Readers are treated to a terrific mélange of satire, slapstick, and caricature, all served up with expert comic timing. Van Dusen (The Circus Ship) may be puncturing the myth of infallible monarchy, but readers will have no trouble pledging obeisance to his comic majesty. -- Publishers Weekly (starred review)

About the Author

Chris Van Dusen is the author-illustrator of THE CIRCUS SHIP and the illustrator of the best-selling MERCY WATSON books by Kate DiCamillo. About KING HUGO'S HUGE EGO, he says, "Arrogance is a trait I’ve always deplored, and yet I have to admit that sometimes my own ego can become a bit inflated. Luckily I have a wonderful wife who acts as a Tessa to my occasional Hugo." Chris Van Dusen lives in Maine with his family.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 2
  • Lexile Measure: 920L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick (July 26, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780763650049
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763650049
  • ASIN: 0763650048
  • Product Dimensions: 10.1 x 0.4 x 11.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #216,993 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Hugo was a very short king with a big ego. He made his people listen to him talk about how wonderful he was for hours. He made his people bow to him each time he walked past. A peasant girl, Tess, was walking down the road with a heavy load. Hugo was behind her and his servants ordered her to move off the road. Tess told the king to go around her. This infuriated the king and the servants bumped Tess into the gutter.

Tess, it turns out, is a witch, She was so angry with the king that she put a spell on him, making his head grow every time he thought about how wonderful he was. His head grew and grew and grew, until he floated off the castle walls and fell into the mud. Who should come along but Tess?!

She tweaked his ears and out of his head came all the haughty things Hugo had thought about himself for so many years until his head returned to normal size and he felt embarrassed at himself and apologized. Tess and Hugo, of course, fell in love and married.

Fabulously expressive illustrations. Rhyming text. And absolutely, side-splittingly hilarious.

"King Hugo's head deflated
like a giant pink balloon,
and when he heard what he had said,
he felt like a buffoon.

Sheepishly he said to her,
`I do apologize.'
Then he looked at Texxa
with his big, sad puppy eyes."
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Format: Hardcover
Chris Van Dusen is our five-year-old son's favorite author. The new book had him in fits of laughter, and he particularly loved the animals looking on as the king blundered along. The illustrations are, just as in The Circus Ship, gorgeous and full of interesting detail. The rhyming verse is very catchy and my son has already memorized it to read along. We highly recommend all Van Dusen's books!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Explaining ego is a hard concept for kids who are very psychologically programmed to be self-centered, so the story has required some explaining. That's not against the story or the book at all, but ego isn't actually something physical a kid can touch (it has symptoms that are visible in behavior and things). However, VanDusen did a great job, and our 7 year old recently read The Emperor's New Clothes folk story at school and made the connection of egotistical/vain behavior.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love all of Chris Van Dusen's books, but this one might be my favorite. It has a great message that I've never seen addressed in a childrens book before. It's about a king who is completely full of himself and who treats others as if they're beneath him. When he ticks off the wrong chick (who's a sorceress) she puts a spell on him that makes his head inflate every time he says something conceded. In the end he finally sees the errors of his ways and becomes a humble and kind king. I think it's such an important lesson to teach our little ones.
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Format: Hardcover
The book's title is a good indicator of the fun your children will have reading this story by Chris van Dusen. His illustrations are bright and attractive alongside a clever rhyming text. Van Dusen explains ego and then uses King Hugo as an example. Our 5 year old took to the story right away, enjoying King Hugo's swelling head and his resulting downfall. The illustrations van Dusen uses to accompany the story almost tell the tale itself, making it a good book for young picture-only readers as well as those who are just beginning to read and build their vocabulary. Look for the strange gentleman in the 50's-ish pork pie hat in the crowd!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A funny book with nice rhymes and great illustration. My kid loves to hear this story at bedtime, again and again. And again. And again.... This makes it very easy to connect and explain ego, vanity and selfishness to kids.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Once again Chris Van Dusen has created a witty story with incredible illustrations. Fun to read as an adult, too. We met him at a book signing and he spent a ton of time with my kids (ages 4 and 7) talking about his work, asking my kids about their work (my 7 year old brought samples of his work to show Chris! and answering questions even though a few people were lined up. And he signed our whole collection. Great guy, seems to really know his audience. We now have all of his books and there isn't a bad one in the lot. Our fav is probably Learning to Ski with Mr McGee or Down to the Sea with Mr. Magee though its a tough call.
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Chris Van Dusen is by far the best childrens author of our time. His illustrations tell the stories and the stories make the adult and child want to read on to see what happens. I live in Maine and he has a way making the pine tree state look like a fantasy land. These books have opened my grandchildren minds. They like to take his stories and add their own ideas. I read a lot of books to my grandchildren and Chris's book are the ones I look forward to reading. My 1 1/2 year old little grand daughter loves Hugo, she calls him Ooogoo. Thank you Chris
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