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Seven Spiders Spinning (The Hamlet Chronicles #1)
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Seven Spiders Spinning (The Hamlet Chronicles #1)

3.61 of 5 stars 3.61  ·  rating details  ·  238 ratings  ·  26 reviews
Seven prehistoric spiders that have been trapped in ice for thousands of years bring excitement to rural Vermont and briefly unite the rival boys' and girls' clubs at a local elementary school. "A fast, delightfully entertaining romp." -- Kirkus Reviews
Paperback, 134 pages
Published August 4th 1995 by HarperCollins Publishers (first published 1994)
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2011 Read Alouds
21st out of 23 books — 4 voters
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Great Bedtime Read-Alouds
18th out of 38 books — 14 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 834)
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Seven Spiders Spinning is an entertaining, original and funny story, that will appeal to 3rd and 4th graders. However it has some major issues. Even though it is not meant to be a deep book, the characters were very shallow and stereotyped. A sweet naive young teacher, a boys and a girls clique, a bullying head of the girls clique, etc. Please! That wasn't necessary to tell the story! The cruel ways in which most of the spiders died were equally unnecessary and not a very good example for childr ...more
D.M. Dutcher
I've never read Maguire's other books, but this is horrible. The premise is odd in itself. 7 baby Siberian snow spiders are thawed from their block of ice by accident, and fall in love with seven little girls. One by one, they try to meet them to meet a bad fate. Meanwhile the 7 girls are in rivalry with 7 boys.

There's a lot to dislike about this book. The first thing you notice is the children. I'll just quote:

Thekla recounted the history of the Copycats and the Tattletales. How the rival clubs
I really didn't enjoy this book. It was recommended on a website as humorous, and I didn't find it very funny at all. It was more in the realm of wild and desperate to me. I didn't even think kids would appreciate the author's attempt at being "funny." The story centers on a upper elementary or maybe lower junior high class where the girls have formed a club and boys have formed a rival club. The girls occasionally do "mean girl" things to each other like taking the opportunity to announce hatin ...more
Too short.
Would be a fun read aloud! My 9 and 12 year olds liked it. Fun story. Kept moving. I found myself thinking about spiders a little more than I would like :)
My daughter and I read this book for our book club and I have to say that I was very disappointed in the quality of the writing. This is Gregory Maguire - I expected better. The storyline was weak, the characters were barly fleshed out and the writing was terrible. Children's literature does not need to be "dumbed down". These kids are worthy of quality writing and should be given the opportunity to experience fabulous literature.
I picked this book up at a resale shop because I recognized Greg Maguire's name and thought it might be suitable for my six year old grandaughter -- she'll enjoy reading it herself by the time she's eight, I think. The story is funny for me because I'm the only one in the family who isn't afraid of spiders!
Just what you would expect form Gregory Maguire, in children's book form. I especially likes the opening verse:

"Spider, spider, in the night,
Dangling by the bathroom light,
Why do you have to bother me
Just when I want some privacy?"
There's nothing really wrong with this kids' book, but there's nothing really great about it either. It may be a fun read for a grade schooler, but it was just so-so for me. I probably won't read any more of the books in the series.
These class students find a mysterios spider that nobody knows about. But they found that spider was a lab experiment. But there seven other spiders in the forest. And these spiders wasn't just any spiders there was rare.
Someone should write something about these books, maybe an essay about the occurrence of certain numbers. In this case, SEVEN! I felt bad for the spiders, though. How did they suddenly become the enemies? Goodness.
Very fun, very cute, and very clever, though, to be fair, I don't know that I would enjoy it so much now if I hadn't loved it so dearly as a kiddo. But I did love it dearly as a kid-aroni, so there ya go!
I SO wish I had a class of students to read this. I was laughing the entire time I read it! And I noticed my son even turned down the volume on his DS, even though he said he wasn't listening.
have just begun

finished today - cute story, definitely for a younger reader but since i had it in my possession and i like many of maguire's books i thought i'd give this one the time.

Read for our Kids Summer Book Discussion group. I didn't know that Gregory Maguire started out in children's books. An excellent story, I'd read the rest of the series.
Jun 05, 2012 Marge added it
Shelves: jfiction
Seven Siberian Snow Spiders are found frozen - as they are being transported for analysis the truck crashes - the spiders thaw and the story begins.
I think young children (3-5 graders in particular) will like this. A bit quirky and odd. Not deep or meaningful.
A wonderful book for all ages, especially if you like funny stories about spiders and kids.
Very funny book - very clever. Light, entertaining, just enough craziness to keep a kid happy.
I love this series. It's aimed at 3rd graders. It's goofy and fun, funny and sweet.
Old Children's Book. Liked it as a kid, but haven't read it in years.
A great Halloween story. Appropriate for fourth grade and up.
Quent Pembrey
CUTE little Siberian Snow Spiders. Bad bite.
Cute little Halloween story.
Assigned: 2011 Aug, EL410
Aug 18, 2010 Kim added it
Shelves: fiction, ar, grade-level-5
2 copies
Azure Shumway
Azure Shumway marked it as to-read
Oct 07, 2015
Jodell Stetson
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Oct 07, 2015
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Oct 04, 2015
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Oct 04, 2015
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Gregory Maguire is an American author, whose novels are revisionist retellings of children's stories (such as L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz into Wicked). He received his Ph.D. in English and American Literature from Tufts University, and his B.A. from the State University of New York at Albany. He was a professor and co-director at the Simmons College Center for the Study of Children' ...more
More about Gregory Maguire...

Other Books in the Series

The Hamlet Chronicles (7 books)
  • Six Haunted Hairdos (The Hamlet Chronicles #2)
  • Five Alien Elves (The Hamlet Chronicles #3)
  • Four Stupid Cupids (The Hamlet Chronicles #4)
  • Three Rotten Eggs (The Hamlet Chronicles #5)
  • A Couple of April Fools (The Hamlet Chronicles #6)
  • One Final Firecracker (The Hamlet Chronicles #7)
Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (The Wicked Years, #1) Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister Son of a Witch (The Wicked Years #2) Mirror Mirror A Lion Among Men (The Wicked Years, #3)

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