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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all it's still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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The Man in the Ceiling (Michael Di Capua Books) Paperback – June 8, 1995

4.4 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Ages 8 & up. The first children's book both written and illustrated by cartoonist Feiffer is a funny, poignant and profoundly insightful look at the inner life of an artist, who also happens to be a young boy. Jimmy Jibbett loves drawing cartoons and hopes to be great some day--but first he must cope with a lack of privacy, a father who wishes he liked sports instead of drawing, a popular older boy who pressures him to sell out and his own urge to give up when he's failing. Just when Jimmy's starting to think that he's "doomed to be as much a flop as a cartoonist as he was as a boy," he finds a way to look at failure in a new light. In a starred review, Booklist called it "wickedly funny... reminiscent of Roald Dahl's edgy lampoons." In another starred review, Publishers Weekly declared it "one of the best books of the year."

From Publishers Weekly

Feiffer's debut as a children's book author concerns a boy who expresses himself by making comic books; in a starred review, PW said, "[This] witty story... combines a comfortably oldfangled tone with up-to-the-minute characterizations and a playful use of graphics." Ages 8-12.-- witty story... combines a comfortably oldfangled tone with up-to-the-minute characterizations and a playful use of graphics." Ages 8-12.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 820L (What's this?)
  • Series: Michael Di Capua Books
  • Paperback: 185 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; 1st Harper Trophy Ed edition (June 8, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062059076
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062059079
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #547,456 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I originally read "The Man in the Ceiling" in the fourth grade and I really didn't understand it, but then in the sixth grade I read it again, and now, as the title of the review mentions, it's my favorite book ever. I am now sixteen years old and I'm still reading it over and over again. The story deals with a young boy who struggles with inadequacy and failure. His main aspiration is to become a cartoonist, but he recieves little support from anyone. His father, a bitter overworked man, wishes Jimmy (the boy) would play sports rather than make comics, and because of this, finds it hard to express love toward his son. His sisters nag him and torment him daily and his mother has little to do with what goes with him. Jimmy's uncle, a failure himself, tells Jimmy to keep at it, and he'll eventually make it, but by the end of the story, the uncle himself is the one who is broken (the not the very end, but it's to good to give away.) Not so fast, this story isn't as depressing as I've made it out to be. It's actually very witty and funny and has a dark sense of humor. Comics Jimmy draws are included through out the story and it is interesting to see how Jimmy interprets events and his surroundings into his art. Very funny, but very sad, and with a wonderful ending. What every book should be, regardless of the reading level.
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Format: Hardcover
We are a group of students in Kansas City, Mo. that read books and discuss them over our lunch. Our grades are 4th -6th. We all had different opinions of the book. Most of us really enjoyed the comics, some of related to the fact that he could not draw hands. Many of us related to his family life. His father worked very hard and found it difficult to show emotion. One day the family went to a play produced by their artistic uncle. The father saw himself in the play as he acted towards his family. The character that he compared himself to was a robot with no emotion. After the play he tried to show more emotion to his family. The main character Jimmy is nothing like his father.For one,Jimmy likes to draw comics and is more of a artistic kind of kid unlike his father who likes baseball and his work.Then there is this boy at school (Charlie Beemer)who wants for Jimmy to draw his ideas in exchange for his friendship.Jimmy likes to draw his own ideas.In the end his father finds more time for his family. In all we all think that you will like the book THE MAN IN THE CELLING.
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A Kid's Review on March 24, 2006
Format: Paperback
The Man in the Ceiling, by Jules Feiffer

Review by Jack Humsey

This story is about a boy named Jimmy, who thinks he is a failure. Jimmy is eleven years old, and is very quiet and artistic. He mostly draws comics like the ones in comic books. He finds the true meaning of effort and confidence through his ambition to become a famous cartoonist. Jimmy's family is very odd in many ways. His dad is all about business and his mom, like Jimmy, is an artist. But they both don't understand why Jimmy's hobby and ambition is drawing cartoons. His biggest fans are his younger and older sisters. But his older sister pushes him around and is angry all the time.

I think the strengths of the book are the transitions. They are very dramatic. The characters go from loneliness to happiness. I think transitions are important in books because they help the reader get the feeling of the settings and people.

It was hard for me to choose something to criticize. But if I had to choose, I would change the father's personality. At the beginning of the book he wasn't interested in his son's work at all, but after the success of the weird uncle's play, the father realized that his son is very unique. That didn't entirely make sense to me.

This book would help some readers build their own confidence. It would be good for people who are artistic and imaginative, people who prefer to work alone. People who are lonely would relate to this book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
One to the best books I have ever read in this mysterious genre—not just for children, for whom much might go unnoticed. Not exactly for adults, who might see it as a children's book, and draw back from it. Perfect for anyone who has felt like a stranger in their own family and has had to work to find what he/she needed to go forward with passion and confidence, to follow their inclinations and develop their talents—even when these were quite unrecognized in their family of origin. A great character, a great story with a spectacular ending.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Off the back of finishing Roald Dahls books, my 8 year old daughter and I picked out The Man in the Ceiling, based on the good reviews it received. Unfortunately, we were disappointed with the book. Although well written, I wouldn’t call the story strong and my daughter wanted to quit reading before we reached the end (which is a first for her).
Obviously, each reader may see something different in the story, it just wasn’t for us.
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Format: Hardcover
My husband and I drove our son to college and on the 5-hour ride home, I read the entire book to my husband. We loved it! My younger son a cartoonist and I found so much truth in the book. I suspect, also, that this book is also somewhat autobiographical; it hits the mark so well. I recommend it to anyone.
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