The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip
Move over, Bill Bennettthe inimitable short story master George Saunders (Pastoralia) and acclaimed illustrator Lane Smith (The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales) have created an astonishing new book of virtues for the child in all of us. Alternately haunting and hilarious, The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip rea
Poor goats! If they can’t sleep from the shrieking, then they can’t make milk!
A girl named Capable and her father have been trying to survive since Capable’s mother died earlier this year. Dad really would like things to stay exactly as they were that day, including the sun staying up and all his meals made of white food. Poor Capable has her hands full carrying the gappers back to the sea and preparing a chalk mixture ...more
Gappers are bright orange baseball-sized critters who look something like a cross between a blowfish and a many-eyed Pac-Man. They exist seemingly only to perch on goats and shriek, causing said goats to stop giving milk and collapse from nervous exhaustion.
You can probably see that this could be a problem for the good citizens of Frip.
And thereby hangs a tale with all the makings of a classic. T ...more
Looks like he's excited, too!
It's a cute and entertaining story with many valuable lessons. For example
1) A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds--or, in non-Emersonian terms, Learn to think outside the box:
2) Overcome life's hurdles
3) Be friendly to everyone
4) Care for animals
5) With help from others, the sky is the limit
6) Prance around with no pants
Well, maybe those weren't all the primary messages, but hey, I'm on an insert pi ...more
I had the pleasure of getting to talk with legendary author George Saunders for CCLaP's podcast last week, a rare treat given how in demand he is on this latest tour even among the major media; but that meant I had to do some serious cramming in the few weeks leading up to our talk, in that (I guiltily con ...more
I bought a copy that very same day.
This is my go-to "I need some giggles" book.
I love the mortified goats.
I love the horrid neighbors.
I love the persistent gappers.
Pretty much, I love this book. I would marry it if I were not already married.
Has anyone out there every actually read this to or with an actual child? What was the child's reaction?
Saunders is sort of literary flavor-of-the-month now. I see serious people with goatees and/or tattoos reading his latest, Tenth of December , in coffee houses. It's encouraging in thes ...more
If you're not in my neighborhood, I urge you to go find a copy.
In a way, this reminded me of a more grown up version of The Sneetches. Wouldn't the world would be a much better place if both of these books were ingrained in our psych ...more
In Frip, people act with blissful ignorance, accepting the world as it is as though they understand it, but they don't. Their ignorance leads to catastrophe for a few of them, and the thoughtful determination of one character leads her to success, all through trial and error.
In today's modern world, science tries to answe ...more
Gappers are little spiky orange creatures that crawl out of the sea and attach themselves to goats. They love goats very much and scream in ecstasy when they are attached to one. Neither the goats nor their o ...more
Gappers, goats, angry operatic singers, self-centered neighbors, and one Father stuck in the past are a stark contrast to the determination and creativity of one small girl named Capable. There are a multitude of rich learning opportunities, each a blend of some part extreme hilarity and another deep profundity.
The Gappers are critters that LOVE goats, love them to the point of overwhelming them to death. Because of this the children of Frip must b ...more
Children will find the text delightfully weird and will enjoy the beautifully colored and textured illustrations. So will adults, for that matter. In fact, adults may be sur ...more
I'd have loved reading this when I was young. It's a nice story with great visuals, and offers the type of moral lessons that only fine literature can provide.
The protagonist, Capable, lives up to her name. It's about mistakes and recovery and greediness and tribalism and realization and class warfare and goats.
If you need a primer on Actions & Consequences Based on Assumptions w/r/t The Lot Fallen Upon Folks, then ...more
I love how the book doesn't turn away from the uglier aspects of life and is able to maintain some form of realist optimism. A tricky part of growing up is learning how to not hide behind illusions of how the world ought to be, or false expectations for ...more