The House Gobbaleen (Picture Puffins)

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9780140565041: The House Gobbaleen (Picture Puffins)

Poor luckless Tooley longs for some help from the Friendly Folk, so when an odd little man shows up, Tooley is delighted. But Hooks worsens Tooley's bad luck. It's up to Tooley's wise cat to get rid of Hooks— by summoning the dreaded House Gobbaleen! Diane Goode's warm paintings bring to life a story that is quintessential Lloyd Alexander. "A delightful treat from beginning to end." — School Library Journal, starred review

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From School Library Journal:

PreSchool-Grade 4?In this original fairy tale, Tooley is convinced that he suffers from bad luck?his roof leaks, his potatoes are too small, and his pig keeps breaking out of her sty. Nonsense, says his sensible cat Gladsake, but the man is determined to attract one of the Fair Folk and change his lot. When a round little figure named Hooks shows up at the door, Tooley is elated, until he finds himself spending his days serving and feeding him. Tooley catches on finally, but it is Gladsake who saves the day with a wily scheme worthy of Brer Rabbit. Alexander's rolling, lilting language is a joy to read aloud, and the seamlessly written story with its wry undertone will engage both young listeners and older readers. Tooley is a good-natured and appealing character, if a bit slow to grasp his situation, and Gladsake is not only clever and sensible, but also extraordinarily patient. Goode's bright, cheery paintings and distinctive style capture the spirit of the tale and carry it to its triumphant conclusion. She maintains a sense of motion with abrupt shifts in angle and perspective and through repeated images that move across one page to the next. The scenes are packed with detail: Tooley's cramped cottage, chock-full of chipped crockery, conveys an air of shabby gentility. Hooks is a marvel of cherubic malevolence, while Tooley's gangly arms and legs and long face with its endearing, if goofy, expression illustrates his eagerness to please. A delightful treat from beginning to end.?Donna L. Scanlon, Lancaster County Library, PA
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist:

Ages 5^-8. Tooley is always grumbling about his bad luck. His wise cat, Gladsake, tries to set him straight ("Which would you rather have? A roof with a leak or a leak without a roof?" ), but Tooley won't listen. He invites a fat, little monster man into the house, sure that he will bring good luck, but eventually the cat has to trick the monster out of the house and prove to Tooley that he can make his own luck. It all goes on too long: too many scenes of the monster bawling and grabbing and demanding food and service, too many tricks to get rid of him. But the storytelling is droll; the fool, the monster, and the trickster are gloriously exaggerated characters, whose roles are sometimes reversed. Goode's bright, slapstick pictures, full of curls and points and dislocation, are as good natured and silly as the story. The monster has drumstick arms, a lumpy nose, and what the cat calls "a lopsided, squinny-eyed look" : he's like everything else in this story, somewhere between clown and gargoyle. Hazel Rochman

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