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Goody Hall

3.56  ·  Rating Details ·  241 Ratings  ·  44 Reviews
An out-of-work actor, Hercules Feltwright, stumbles into a job tutoring Willet Goody, the only child of a widow living in a large, lonely house. Willet quickly involves his tutor in the search to discover the truth about his father. The mystery unfolds with the discovery of hidden treasure, a gypsy séance, and the frightening exploration of the tomb of Midas Goody.
Paperback, 192 pages
Published August 21st 2007 by Square Fish (first published 1971)
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(showing 1-30)
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Emily
I found this book to be tremendously clever when I read it as a child. I particularly liked the parallels between the life-stories of itinerant hat-maker/actor/tutor Hercules Feltwright, and his mythological namesake. For this reason, I chose to read it aloud to my son immediately after finishing D'Aulaires' Book of Greek Myths, to prove to him that knowing mythology would enrich his life by opening his eyes to allusions, just like I said it would, darn it. Unfortunately Goody Hall just wasn't a ...more
Judy
This has to be set in a rural area somewhere in England, although a place is never specified. Introduces kids to the mythological Hercules, which is the tutor's name.
Books Kids Like
Oct 10, 2013 Books Kids Like rated it really liked it
Shelves: babbitt-natalie
When Hercules Feltwright comes to Goody Hall to tutor Willet Goody, he learns of some mysterious events that happened five years before. Mott Snave stole jewels and a Cerberus statue from the church bishop, and John Constant, a local farmer, rode off to catch him. Neither man was ever seen again. During this time, Willet's father, Midas Goody, died when he fell from his horse. Willet tells Hercules that he doesn't believe that his father is dead, because he heard something clank inside the coffi ...more
Eden
Dec 25, 2011 Eden rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-i-own, reviewed
Hercules Feltwright was an actor, but decided to leave his acting troupe in exchange for the career of a tutor. And a tutor is needed at Goody Hall, where he is headed.

There he begins to tutor Willet Goody, who is the only child of the widow Mrs. Goody.

Willet's father is supposed to be dead, but he doesn't believe that is so. Soon he involves Hercules and together they search for the truth about Willet's father.

This book was a little slow to start, but it turns out to be quite good. There is a
...more
Ann
Dec 01, 2012 Ann rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another gem from Natalie Babbitt. This one is about an actor-turned-teacher (he liked playing the role!) named Hercules Feltwright who lands his first job tutoring Willet Goody in his impressive but lonely family home. Hercules misquotations of Shakespeare and herculean (pun intended) feats are most enjoyable, and Willet's longing for the father he doesn't believe is dead is most touching. This is literal cloak and dagger stuff. Adult readers will see what's coming up next, but it's a good read ...more
Lauren
Jun 12, 2011 Lauren rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
A quick, easy read and a cute story. The plot was interesting and I didn't want to put the book down, but it wasn't too deep or philosophical like Tuck Everlasting. Check it out.
Ashly Lynn
Feb 20, 2016 Ashly Lynn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Mystery readers. Those who like children's fiction.
Recommended to Ashly by: Found at Library. Liked Babbitt's Tuck Everlasting.
4/5 Stars

Hercules Feltright is a tutor that has recently come to Goody Hall to tutor the woman of the house’s child, Willet Goody. Willet is a very curious child, but the thing he is most curious about is the disappearance of his father. Hercules, with a few allusions made in the text to Greek Mythology, is not a very good tutor. He used to be an actor until he decided he was going to be a tutor. Hercules also notices there is something strange going on. Will the two be able to solve the disappe
...more
Jess
Feb 15, 2017 Jess rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

I decided to read this because A) I found it on sale and B) I loved Babbitt's Tuck Everlasting. While not on the same level, this is still a fun and easy read.

Hercules Feltwright is an actor-turned-teacher (or tutor) who lands a job mentoring and tutoring Willet Goody. Willet lives in an impressive sized home without a father so his energy has previously been channeled into crazy actions - actions that are soon tamed by Hercules. Willet doesn't believe his father is dead (or buried "down below"
...more
Lillian
Apr 03, 2016 Lillian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2016, 4-star

I love Natalie Babbitt, which is why I only gave this book 4 stars. That doesn't make much sense at first probably, but here's the thing: I have very high expectations for any book by Babbitt, so if this were by another author it would get five stars but it just isn't as good as Babbitt's other books. Goody Hall was a mystery about a boy and his new tutor trying to figure out what was so odd about the story of Midas Goody's, the boy's father, death. Young Willet Goody and his tutor, Hercules Fel

...more
Emily
Apr 07, 2012 Emily rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked this up because I am a big fan of one of the author's other works, Tuck Everlasting. I was mildly disappointed that this didn't rise to the same caliber, but it was still an entertaining tale. Goody Hall is a "long ago tale" involving the residents of a mansion and the inhabitants of a nearby village. Young Willet Goody is convinced his father did not die five years ago as he has been told and enlists the help of his new tutor, Hercules Feltwright, to investigate the matter.
Each charac
...more
Chris Popp
Aug 12, 2012 Chris Popp rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. It's the third Natalie Babbitt I've read, after Tuck Everlasting and The Search for Delicious. Her writing is extraordinary. It elevates relatively simple stories into polished gemstones of magical prose. The characters here are quite good too. Witness Hercules Feltwright, who misquotes Shakespeare with impunity and is a young-but-wise tutor. Witness the Goody family, who are not so happy in their beautiful house. Witness Alfreida and Alfresco Rom, and Dora Tidings an ...more
Jim Sibigtroth
Jan 27, 2013 Jim Sibigtroth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great mystery story with a great message about what is really important. Fun and interesting with many surprising twists and surprises. I recommend it highly for any reader from third grade through adult. So far all of Natalie Babbitt's books I have read have been good, but a few like this one are much better than just good.
There is a light sense of humor running through the story that is a refreshing change from mysteries where the author seems to be working too hard to create a dark sinister
...more
Kelly
Sep 14, 2007 Kelly rated it really liked it
Shelves: juvenile
It's a gothic tale of mysterious Goody Hall. Journeyman (Actor/dancer/model -- okay, just actor) Hercules arrives in town and takes on a position tutoring the young and wealthy Willet Goody. Hercules, reluctantly and unfortunately (according to him) destined (according to his mother) to live the heroic life of his mythological namesake, discovers the secrets of the Goody family's success. Overall, the book is funny and suspenseful.
LuAnn
Jul 23, 2014 LuAnn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A charming story by the author of Tuck Everlasting. The central character, Hercules Feltwright, whose life loosely mirrors the feats of his Greek namesake, is sympathetic and amusing. An interesting plot with a twist you may see coming but is fun, nonetheless, with a good lesson for one character about what really matters.
Cathy
Dec 27, 2010 Cathy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 5-stars
Pulled this off the library shelf for my son to give him an alternative to Harry Potter (It's nothing like Harry Potter, I was just looking for other things he might like). I thought I'd just read one page and then set it down and ended up reading the whole book in two hours. It's wonderfully written, great characters, intriguing mystery and a happy ending. Read this one.
Natalie
Jan 13, 2014 Natalie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Interesting group of characters and the mystery to the end of Midas Hall keeps the young reader wanting to know about his demise. Young Willet Goody does not believe that his father past away and convices his former actor - turned tutor to help him investigate about his father and find out if he is still alive.
Joyce
Jun 05, 2009 Joyce rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the first book by Natalie Babbitt that I have read. I enjoyed this mystery so much that I must look up some more of her books to read.

It seems this tale is meant for tweens and teens, but I enjoyed it immensely.
Charlie Moses
Dec 01, 2016 Charlie Moses rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Children's fiction. Natalie Babbitt doesn't fail to produce an interesting and enjoyable book. Also, to make the reader think about serious topics, like the value of work, and the relative value of wealth. All told in an interest-holding and amusing fashion.
Judy Templeton-sims
This is a childrens story, about a boy who was told his father passed away. I thought the story may have been interesting in the late 18 hundreds. I can't see any children in this time era enjoying it.
Jared Bird
While not terribly boring, the book is also mostly forgettable- it's simple plot and characters don't evolve much during the course of the book and the mystery to be solved is only mildly compelling. A quick read, mostly oriented towards younger readers.
Zina
Apr 19, 2008 Zina rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed reading Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt, so when I saw this book, I picked it up. It was a fun short read. A young person would need to be old enough to put the pieces together to figure out the mystery.
Janelle
Oct 29, 2013 Janelle rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I kept waiting for a spark that would prove this was written by the author of Tuck Everlasting. It never showed. It literally took me months to make myself finish.
Grace
Fantastic read for the summer list!
Cher Bibler
I abandoned this half way through. Don't know why.
Karijean31
Dec 31, 2011 Karijean31 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
nice easy short story
Richie
Jun 29, 2016 Richie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very cute adventure story starring an out of work actor. Read this after re-reading Tuck Everlasting and found this story far superior. Mysterious but light.
Caseyazalea
Jan 04, 2014 Caseyazalea rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Just reread this one today after finding a copy at the library book sale. I still love Hercules Feltwright and the gentle humor in this charming little mystery.
Tara
Feb 10, 2013 Tara rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Disappointing. Weird. Not worth it.
Lauren
Mar 05, 2010 Lauren rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a great mystery I think Natalie Babbitt is a great writer. She's writen a few fantasy, a mystery, and a folktale. So far that I have read.
Vanessa
Mar 24, 2015 Vanessa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the characters in the book. It was a great light read, a fun diversion.
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1954
Natalie Babbitt was an American writer and illustrator of children's books. She attended Laurel School for Girls, and then Smith College. She had 3 children and was married to Samuel Fisher Babbitt. She was the grandmother of 3 and lived in Rhode Island.

She was a board member of the National Children's Book and Literacy Alliance a national not-for-profit that actively advocates for literacy, liter
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