The 13 Clocks
Once upon a time, in a gloomy castle on a lonely hill, where there were thirteen clocks that wouldn’t go, there lived a cold, aggressive Duke, and his niece, the Princess Saralinda. She was warm in every wind and weather, but he was always cold. His hands were as cold as his smile, and almost as cold as his heart. He wore gloves when he was asleep, and he wore gloves when...more
The story is about an evil Duke who has been c...more
This was a fast and fun romp. One part wicked to two parts whimsy, it's a book to delight all ages. Children will love the story, and adults will enjoy the more sophisticated humor and word play. If you know anything about James Thurber, (or maybe even if you don't), you'll appreciate how much fun he had writing t...more
I enjoyed the pictures and set it a...more
"...They came and tried and failed and disappeared and never came again. And some, as I have said, were slain, for using names that start with X, or dropping spoons, or wearing rings, or speaking disrespectfully o...more
Summary (SPL): With the help of his magical protector, the Golux, Prince Zorn performs impossible tasks to win the hand of Princess Saralinda.
Library Journal: "[In] James Thurber's grown-up fairy tale... the cold Duke of Coffin Castle, who was 'even colder than he thought he was,' holds his 'niece' captive and refuses to give her hand in m...more
"It's one of the great kids' books of the last century. It may be the best thing Thurber ever wrote. It's certainly the most fun that anybody can have reading anything aloud." -Neil Gaiman
“Courtship Like Clockwork?’
I was introduced to this marvelous fantasy in junior high school; despite the passing of decades and having read hundreds of Young Adult books and a hundred Children’s and Adult classics, I still recall this little book with real fondness. Recognized for his droll and irreverent Midwestern sense of humor (“The Secret Life of Walter Mitty”) Thurber is generally known for his outrageous delicition of family and married life. The Ohio j...more
Consider that the quest is to find 1,000 jewels in nine and ninety hours on a rocky island which has already been combed...more
Rather, I bring up the oddities of his character because it explains so perfectly the fascination he had with an author by the name of James Thurber, his idol and model. We spent may class pe...more
Look, this was released by Dell Yearling, so theoretically it is a children's novel. Children do not know who James Thurber is, do not usually care about whether or not a story is philosophical or Thurberian, and while they do enjoy wordplay and fun, aren't placing as high a value on it as the sheer delight a story involves. Seeing this on the back cover was my first warning, and the book confirms my right to be.
The writing is like a sword that is so encrusted with brilliant...more
Every great fairy-tale needs a vi...more
This book tells the somewhat classic tale of a princess locked up by her evil father. Any price who comes to woo the princess is given an impossible task to perform, in order to win her hand in marriage. That is until a minstrel comes along and with the help of an elven/dwarfish prankster, tricks the old king in his own game.
"The castle clocks were murdered," said the Duke. "I killed time here myself one snowy morning. You still can see the old brown stains, where seconds bled to death, here on m
Something very much like nothing anyone had ever seen before came trotting down the stairs and crossed the room.
"What is that?" the Duke asked, palely.
"I don't kno...more
It's like this combination of Dr. Seuss and Scary Stories to Read in the Dark and a fairy tale, and I loved it for all those things - the made up words and the woman who cried jewels (but never cried), and the agent of the devil that moved like monkeys and sounded like rabbits screaming, and punished evildoers who had not done enough evil.
Normally when st...more
The Thirteen Clocks is a fairy tale, for both young and old. I t is especially nice to read out loud. The book is full of wordplay, and creatures like the Todal: "An agent of the devil, sent to punish evil-doers for having done less evil than they should."
Read it! Now!
Some favorite dialogue from the book:
"We all have flaws,"...more
The Thirteen Clocks is a fairy tale, with all the hallmarks of a classic and enduring story, but with a generous dose of amusing surrealism and fancy wordplay thrown in. It is subtly beautiful and gratifyingly weird.
This is a children's book, of course, but I honestly don't know if children will be able to appreciate it as much as adult...more
It may be standing in my way that I'm not a Thurber fan. I just didn't think "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty" was funny any of the eight times it was assigned reading in high school and college, and I saw no reason to seek out anyt...more
|Probably the book which developed my love of reading!||1||17||Jul 12, 2011 04:20am|