Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Many Moons” as Want to Read:
Many Moons
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Many Moons

4.10  ·  Rating Details  ·  4,147 Ratings  ·  285 Reviews
A wise tale of a little princess who wanted the moon and got it. “Grown-ups themselves will find the book hilariously funny. . . . The lovely, squiggly illustrations in color are exactly right.”--The New Yorker
Paperback, 48 pages
Published April 18th 1973 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published 1943)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Many Moons, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Many Moons

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Aug 07, 2013 Karen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The first time I encountered Many Moons by James Thurber, it was read to me. I was in third grade. If the illustrations were shown, I didn't see them. And they weren't necessary for me to enjoy the book -- I could picture it perfectly in my head. The story stayed with me for many years. If I ever knew, I soon forgot the name of the author. I've since forgotten the name of my third-grade teacher. But I've never forgotten how much I loved this book.

Years later, in my early twenties, I began readin
Aug 13, 2014 Miriam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture
Ivory, apes, and peacocks, rubies, opals, and emeralds, black orchids, pink elephants, and blue poodles, gold bugs, scarabs, and flies in amber, hummingbirds' tongues, angels' feathers, and unicorns' horns, giants, midgets, and mermaids, frankincense, ambergris, and myrrh, troubadours, minstrels, and dancing women.
Many Moons by James Thurber, illustrated by Louis Slobodkin is a fairy tale about Princess Lenore, who asks for the moon when she is sick. The King summons all his wise men but none of them know how to get the moon. The Court Jester turns out to be the one to solve the problem.

This charming, whimsical story has plenty of sly humor and a few challenging words (surfeit, physician etc.). Thurber writes about wisdom and the differing perceptions of children and adults. The concept of things being "i
Lauren Bennett
May 21, 2016 Lauren Bennett rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The story Many Moons, by James Thurber, is an adorable story of a sick, little princess who wants the moon to help her feel better and all the trouble her father the king goes through to get her the moon. This story was awarded the Caldecott award in 1944. The illustrations in this story are beautifully done and I would recommend this book especially to kids who love pictures and drawing.
I really enjoyed the illustrations in this story. With such a cute story, you definitely need some cute ill
Jackie "the Librarian"
Sep 26, 2007 Jackie "the Librarian" rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: princesses
I love this story about a princess with a tummyache, who asks for the moon, and the jester who figures out how the king can get it for her. Way too wordy for a library storytime, this is a great lap book for parents to share with their own princesses. I prefer the illustrations by Marc Simont, even though the they aren't the ones that won the Caldecott.
This book won the 1944 Caldecott, but this must've been another year where there wasn't much competition. I liked the book, though the story drones on for a bit. The book tells the story of a princess who falls ill and wants the moon, but all of her father's advisors say that the moon is impossible to get, until he asks the Court Jester, who takes a more logical-to-a-child approach to the situation. She gets her moon and gets well again. The next night, when the moon reappears, the king is frant ...more
Angie Schaefer Ellefson
A little princess falls ill, and the only way she will get better is if she gets the moon. The king consults his wise men- the Lord High Chamberlain, the Royal Wizard, and the Royal Mathematician. In the end, it is the Court Jester who discovers the solution by consulting the princess. This story reminds all readers that answers are sometimes found in what seem the least likely places; and the wisdom of children should never be discounted.
Nevada Libert
Mar 24, 2014 Nevada Libert rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
this was a good story of a little princces wanted the moon and got it, this book allso has lots of wisdom in it.
Aug 08, 2013 Allison rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: caldecott
My mother must have read this to me so many times as a child-- I didn't think I recognized it from the title or cover, but as soon as I opened the book and saw the delicate, softly colored sketches, I couldn't help but breathe a nostalgic sigh. The illustrations in this book are a pure delight. I love the way the artist has the images winding around the text on some pages, unfurling from the scroll depicted on the opposite page. I love the expressive faces and body language of the characters, an ...more
Ryan Emily
Mar 29, 2016 Ryan Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
i. Many Moons, by James Thurber is the story of Princess Lenore. During the day, she ate too many raspberry tarts and her stomach was hurting. She told her father, the King, that the only thing that would make her feel better was if she could have the moon. He promises her the moon before thinking through the commitment and is conflicted about what to do from there. People throughout the kingdom are summoned by the King, but none of them can figure out how to get the moon for the Princess. The c ...more
Elle Harris
May 01, 2015 Elle Harris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tl-307, picture, fiction
This is a story about a princess who is sick and claims that all she wants is the moon. Her father, the king, becomes frustrated when nobody is able to get the moon for his sick daughter. After a series of events, every person in the castle denies the King's request to get the moon for his sick daughter. In the end, the jester realizes that the princess thinks the moon is as big as her fingernail and made of gold. The jester thought it was silly that nobody took time to simply ask the princess w ...more
Camila Padilla
Many Moons by James Thurber

“Once upon a time, in a kingdom by the sea” Princess Lenore had fallen ill with a tummy ache from eating a mouthful of raspberry pies, and thinks that only the moon itself can cure her illness. The king worried for there was no one in the palace who could figure out a way to get his beloved daughter what she wanted. But perhaps the little princess was not asking for as much as everyone thought. While every one had an idea of what getting the moon consisted in that made
Ashlyn Phillips
I enjoyed this book for 2 reasons. The first being that a child held all answers. I know that in life life I do remember being a little kid and feeling like my opinion didn't matter because "i was a child i didn't know anything". I realize that we have all probably felt this way at times. What I liked was that the King sent out for the wisest men in all the land to get the moon for his daughter. And not only did the "lowly" court jester (supposedly a lesser on the education and knowledge scale) ...more
Cari Williams
Feb 05, 2014 Cari Williams rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-s-books
Many Moons is a story of a king and his daughter whom he loves so much that he is willing to get her anything she desires, even the moon. I really enjoyed reading this book because I liked how the author used humor with all of his characters. In the story, the one who you would least expect to solve the kings problem comes up with a very clever way to get the princess what she wants and make the king happy all at the same time. The character that was my favorite was the princess because as her f ...more
Berkley Morris
May 24, 2016 Berkley Morris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Many Moons" is a sweet and endearing story. In this story, Princess Lenore's father, the King, stops at nothing to get his daughter what she wants(the moon) to make her feel better. He exhausts every possibility until his daughter is content and feels better. Like the King, most fathers will move heaven and earth to make sure their little girl(s) are happy. If there was a father/daughter genre( I am not sure if this is a thing.), "Many Moons" would be the perfect book.
Just from looking at the
A king who just wants to make his sick daughter better does everything in his power to get her the moon. The only thing that she says will make her better. The king grows angry and upset when people arent able to get his sick daughter the moon, the one thing that will make her feel better. Finally, the king’s jester asks the princess what she means by the moon, to her the moon is the size of her fingernail and is made of pure gold. The jester found it so silly that the king assumed that his daug ...more
Connor Flatley
Oct 22, 2014 Connor Flatley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Many Moon is the story of a sick princess, Lenore, and her wishing the moon would heal her. The king tells the Lord High Chamberlain to get the moon for his daughter and he then tells the Royal Wizard, and so on. The Royal Goldsmith creates a small round golden moon and places it on a string for the princess. The main concern is that the Princess will realize that it is not the real moon once she sees the moon shining in the night sky. The story is the journey of the father trying to fulfill and
David Korsak
This book is about a princess who has a severe illness and she wants her father who is the king to bring her the moon so she can get better. The king’s subjects reply that they can’t deliver the moon because it’s impossible, but the Court Jester steps in and says he can deliver the moon. The Court Jester then creates what the princess thinks is the moon and delivers it to her chambers. The princess feels better instantly and the king is satisfied. The king soon realizes the moon is still in the ...more
Tim Root
Feb 01, 2016 Tim Root rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book started out as a young princess named Lenore being ill in her bedroom. Each time she becomes sick the King requests his servants to retrieve anything she asks for. This time she wanted the moon in order to become well again. This was too tall of a task for the Kings servants, until the Jester came to the rescue. In reality Lenore had a very simple view of the world that was much different than the servants. She told the Jester how the moon was so small it was the size of her thumbnail. ...more
Apr 29, 2015 Aidan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tch_lrn-307
The illustrations in “Many Moons” are done in watercolor and pen, which creates a fine line and really makes the illustrations more detailed. There is not much on the pages and the drawings are very simple. “Many Moons” is about a King that always provides for his daughter. His daughter, Princess Lenore, is sick and wants the moon. The people who work for the King in the palace have done many outrageous things for him and the Princess but the moon is just something that cannot be obtained. The K ...more
Abigail Elyse
The story of Many Moons by James Thurber begins with a princess named Lenore who becomes very sick, and the only cure is for her to have the moon. The King then asks several different people in the kingdom to get the moon for his daughter. All of the people the King asks for help give him a list of things that they have done for him, but assure him that they cannot get the moon for him. In addition to this each person they ask has a different idea of what the moon is made of, and how far it is a ...more
Many Moons is about a girl named Princess Lenore who gets sick and the King says he will get her anything she wants to make her feel better, and she asks for the moon. The King asks the Lord High Chamberlain, the Royal Wizard, and the Royal Mathematician to get him the moon and they all say that they cannot. Then he talks to the Court Jester about it, who then goes and talks to Lenore about it. He asks her what she thinks the moon looks like, and she says it is gold, not too far away, and smalle ...more
Savannah Spaulding
This book is about a princess who gets ill and she tells her father to get well again she just has to have the moon. The King then goes and asks different people how he is going to get the moon. The only one who can come up with the correct answer is the Jester. As more problems arise for the princess she ends up being the only one who can solve her own problems. It was an interesting take on children being able to do things on their own and would be good for young readers learning to be indepen ...more
Marissa Lubinski
Mar 26, 2015 Marissa Lubinski rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-selection
I thought this book was very well written. In this story princess Lenore got sick because she ate too many raspberry tarts. Her dad, the king did not how to heal her, he so he asked his staff. He asked Lord High Chamberlain, he asked the royal wizard, and the royal mathematician. They all have done great favors to the king before such as bringing him blue poodles and discovering the length of the sea serpent but none of them had any ideas how to get the moon. Then the court jester thought of ask ...more
Emily Johnson
Apr 21, 2015 Emily Johnson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When Princess Lenore becomes ill due to a raspberry tart she is stuck sick in bed. Her father, the king, tells her that will get her whatever she wants so that she will become better. Princess Lenore knows exactly what she wants, she wants her father to get her the moon! She believes that if she gets the moon then she will be healthy again. The king asks favors from almost everyone he knows trying to get the moon for Lenore. When he finally gets her the moon (or what he tells her is the moon), h ...more
In James Thurber's "Many Moons," a princess becomes ill and her father, the king, would do anything to make it better. As per the princess’s request, he orders every wise man he knows to bring him the moon. The princess said if she had the moon, she would be better. However, no one that the King calls upon thinks it is possible to acquire the moon and the king becomes distressed. But there is one person the king didn’t think to ask, that knows how to bring the moon to the princess.
The major them
Jamie Singer
This book's illustrations are not as good as I expected but the story line itself I loved. This is about a princess who has a deathly illness and she wants her father who is the king to bring her to the moon so she can get better. The king’s subjects reply that they can’t deliver the moon because it’s impossible, but the Court Jester steps in and says he can deliver the moon. The Court Jester then creates what the princess thinks is the moon and delivers it to her chambers. The princess feels be ...more
Mekenna Price
Personally, I was surprised by this book. It is an older one, which lead me to believe that it would not be as good as books that were made more recently. However, Many Moons by James Thurber proved me wrong. I can honestly say that it is now on my list of top children's stories. For me, it had the whole package: it had the intriguing artwork by Louis Slobodkin, that made it soft but intense at the same time. An example of that was when there were different sizes of the moon, described by the ki ...more
Cate Mueller
Many Moons by James Thurber and illustrated by Louise Slobodokin tells a story of a fathers love her his Princess daughter who has fallen ill. Her father, the king, asks the Princess if there was anything her heart desires, and the Princess decides she wants the moon. This story is filled with dialogue and different characters that all have a common goal of giving “the moon” to the Princess. Although there is far more text compared to other children’s books, the illustrations flow with the text ...more
Matthew West
Dec 07, 2014 Matthew West rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: t-l-307
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Frog Went a-Courtin'
  • The Fool of the World and the Flying Ship
  • Prayer for a Child
  • The Rooster Crows: A Book of American Rhymes and Jingles
  • Sam, Bangs & Moonshine
  • May I Bring a Friend?
  • The Biggest Bear
  • The Little Island
  • Always Room for One More
  • A Story, a Story
  • Chanticleer and the Fox
  • Time of Wonder
  • Duffy and the Devil
  • Cinderella, or the Little Glass Slipper
  • Abraham Lincoln
  • A Tree Is Nice
  • Noah's Ark
  • Baboushka and the Three Kings
Thurber was born in Columbus, Ohio to Charles L. Thurber and Mary Agnes (Mame) Fisher Thurber. Both of his parents greatly influenced his work. His father, a sporadically employed clerk and minor politician who dreamed of being a lawyer or an actor, is said to have been the inspiration for the small, timid protagonist typical of many of his stories. Thurber described his mother as a "born comedien ...more
More about James Thurber...

Share This Book

“If love is the answer, could you rephrase the question?” 64 likes
“Have you brought the moon to me?" she asked. "Not yet," said the Court Jester, "but I will get it for you right away. How big do you think it is?" "It is just a little smaller than my thumbnail," she said, "for when I hold my thumbnail up at the moon, it just covers it." "And how far away is it? asked the Court Jester. "It is not as high as the big tree outside my window," said the Princess, "for sometimes it gets caught in the top branches." It will be very easy to get the moon for you," said the Court Jester. "I will climb the tree tonight when it gets caught in the top branches and bring it to you." The he thought of something else. "What is the moon make of, Princess?" he asked. "Oh," she said, "it's made of gold, of course, silly.” 8 likes
More quotes…