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Kneeknock Rise

3.55 of 5 stars 3.55  ·  rating details  ·  1,023 ratings  ·  126 reviews
From the moment young Egan arrives in Instep, he senses the spell cast over the villagers by the Megrimum--the mysterious something that lurks on the mist-wreathed peak of Kneeknock Rise. Everyone shudders in horror--delicious horror--whenever the Megrimum's unearthly wail floats down to the village. Before long, Egan is climbing the Rise to find a practical explanation fo
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Paperback, 118 pages
Published August 1st 1984 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) (first published January 1st 1970)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,636)
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K.
Another on the possible read-aloud list that probably won't make the cut for various reasons.

1) I LOVE the name of the mountain, which is the name of the book, it is pretty creative. Local people are frightened of it, so they call it "Knee-knock Rise." The small town at the base is called, also creatively, Instep.

2)I'm just not sure what Babbitt was getting at here. As much as I really don't like to put words into someone else's mouth, I feel there could be several interpretations, which I wil
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Annette
Apr 21, 2008 Annette rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who likes Tuck Everlasting
Shelves: juvenile-fiction
Like Tuck Everlasting, this is a thought provoking book. I didn't like it as much as Tuck, but I did enjoy it. I think the whole message of the book can be found in the poem written by Uncle Ott:

I visited a certain king
Who had a certain fool.
The king was gray with wisdom got
From forty years of schol.
The fool was pink with nonsense
And could barely write his name
But he knew a lot of little songs
And sang them just the same.
The fool was gay. The king was not.
Now tell me if you can:
Which was perhaps
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Ann
Rereading Tuck Everlasting made me want to read all of Natalie Babbitt's books for young readers. The Megrimum is a bellowing creature that lives on top of the rise. No one knows what it is, but they all live in its shadow. When Egan arrives to stay with his mother's family in the village of Instep, he gets caught up in the legend and decides to climb the rise and become a hero--with surprising results. The book is a parable. It asks the question: who is the wise man and who is the fool? Parents ...more
Jamie
Very fast read, obviously, because it's a 120 page childrens book. I needed a break from the heavy-handed sci-fi that I was reading. I picked this up because I loved "Tuck Everlasting" and this was by the same author.

I don't know about anyone else, but this book felt like a God allegory. A small village has a local legend of a mythical beast that lives at the top of a cliff on their mountain, which howls loudly during heavy rain/lighting storms. Everyone is scared of it (but also kind of fond o
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Barbara
I thought I was going to love this book. Halfway through, I was sure I was going to love it. It ended up leaving me with a lot of thoughts, but mixed feelings. The fact that this brief children's book left me thinking quite deeply is a sign of how good the book was, but still. I think I wanted something different out of it in the end.

One of the blurbs on the back of the book describes it as a "new folktale," and that's probably an apt description. The story tells the tale of a boy named Egan as
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Hannahd713
I LOVED THIS BOOK. i loved uncle Ott's poems. I think unce Ott was my favorite character because he very wise. He was just so simple. I didn't understand at first, I ended up reading the book twice before really understand the message in this book (there are a few) but the one that really stuck with me is that simple can be rather good. Sometimes things don't have to be exaggerated to make it sound good. Simplicity is a really natural, good thing.
Tim Vandenberg
This brief, yet profound, tale for grades 3-7 teaches the power of stubborn belief, and people's unwillingness to change their long-held worldviews, no matter the facts to the contrary. People naturally tend to be highly skilled at explaining away any ideas contrary to their own deeply-held beliefs, and this book teaches this truth quite well.

Consider Babbitt's words on p. 111: "...[I]t doesn't really matter. The only thing that matters is whether you want to believe...or not...And if your mind
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Jessica
The Megrimum lives atop the Kneeknock Rise, howling on stormy days and nights. In the small town of Instep stationed near the foot of the "mountain", no one has seen him but all are weary, taking precocious measures. For thousands of years, and for a thousand more he will continue to live atop Kneeknock Rise and the villagers will continue to live in fear.

I did not want to incorporate any of the characters in my review. The plot of the story does not so much as surround the protagonist, as it d
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Natalie Gerlach
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Steph Su
While I fell for this book almost from the get-go--there is something about its haunting narration that befits the fable-esque tale it's telling and evokes fireplace storytelling nights--I was worried that my EL410 kids would have trouble getting into the book. The vocabulary is more difficult, the prose is old-fashioned, and this book came on the heels of Doctor Proctor's Fart Powder, which is silly and straightforward and easy.

I needn't have worried. My kids blew me away with how much they cou
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Kelsey
In this Newbery Honor Book, young Egan visits his mother's family in a nearby town. The town has always been afraid of a creature called a Megrimum that lives on a nearby mountain. In fact, the town even has an annual fair that draws visitors from all around to hear the Megrimum's roars during the storms. When Egan discovers the truth about the Megrimum, he must wrestle with the importance of belief to the community.

This book would be appropriate for independent readers between nine and twelve
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Joan
This is a quick read "fable-like" book. Interesting theme,
my favorite quote,
"Is it better to be wise if it makes you solemn and practical, or is it better to be foolish so you can go on enjoying tourself?"
Something to think about.
Julia
I usually don't like books that have "lessons" in them, but I thought this book did a good job with the idea it was trying to convey, which was something along the lines of that sometimes it's better to just let the people believe in something because it makes them happy (which is weird to think about, considering the people of Instep lived in fear of being killed by the Megrimum), even if you know it's not true. I thought it was interesting how the point they made at the end connected back to t ...more
Laura
From the author of Tuck Everlasting… which I haven’t read, but I’m assuming some of you have. ;)

The Story.

Egan is excited to be visiting his cousins in Instep village for their annual Fair. After all, exciting things never happen in his own city! But what promises to be even more exciting than the fair is the Megrimmum.

Looking down on Instep is a mountain called Kneeknock Rise. This is where the Megrimmum lives. No one has ever seen the Megrimmum, but they’ve heard its howls and screams during t
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Ann Carpenter
This was a perfect little fable-like tale. The language was wonderful: "It moaned like a lonely demon, like a mad despairing animal, like a huge and anguished something chained forever in its own great tragic disappointments." Wow.

The story itself is quite thought-provoking. I thought it was spot on in its depiction of people who sorta-kinda know deep down that there isn't really a monster, but want to believe there is because it makes life more interesting. I know a lot of people don't like th
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Chloe
Yaya: I remember when Ethan climbed up Kneeknock rise and he find a laughing man called Uncle Ott. On the bottom of Kneeknock Rise there was a cave with a spring. There was a Megrimum on Kneeknock rise and it was a hole in the ground. Uncle Ott said it's possible if the people want to believe in the Megrimum because they didn't want to believe in Ethan. A rock from the mountain came and they said that's the Megrimum. I remember when Annabelle was under the bed and the aunt said, "come out there, ...more
Michelle Isenhoff
In a land of flat plains there sits a ridge of hill, and on the very top one, the one always embraced by a cloak of mist, there dwells a beast. The people of Instep, the town closest to Kneeknock Rise, hold a fair each autumn, when the weather turns surly and the Megrimum atop the hill begins to moan. It is to this fair that Egan is bound. Here he learns the nature of the beast, and the best ways to ward it off – candles, onions, wishbones, poppies and bells. Especially bells. Bright-eyed people ...more
Jenny
This book was great. My 8-year-old enjoyed it as well. I thought she'd be too spooked by the lurking presence up on the rise, but she wasn't. She even thought it was funny that it turned out to be not what everyone expected. I liked the writing. There are some especially beautiful passages of prose and that is why I gave it 5 stars, even though I thought a few of the characters weren't my favorites (the cousin was obnoxious!). This paragraph-especially the end- in particular made me pine for boo ...more
Kasey H
May 03, 2013 Kasey H is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
April 29, 2013

I've read several books since the last Good Reads. I enjoyed "Tuck Everlasting" so much, that I've tried to get, and read more books by Natalie Babbitt. I don't enjoy fiction books as much as realistic fiction books, but Natalie Babbitt can make the fiction books great! So now I need to tell you the book I'm reading! Knee Knock Rise, obviously by Natalie Babbitt! So I should probably follow the directions about what our Good Reads this week is supposed to be about.
Egan is the m
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Gale
DELICIOUS FANTASY OF GROUP TERROR

Young Egan is traveling by chandler's cart to the distant village of Instep, to enjoy their annual fair, where he will
stay with relatives. (The setting is deliberately vague as to country and date.) But the guests and tourists expect much more than a delightful day in the country with special foods, games and craft booths. They want mist, rain and a big storm as a lugubrious prelude to the audible terror who dwells at the top of a mound called Kneeknock Rise. (W
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Books Kids Like
Instep is built at the foot of Knee-knock Rise, a rugged cliff whose peak is shrouded in mist. When it rains, dreadful moans and groans come from the peak. The people believe that the noises are made by the Megrimum, a dreadful beast that eats dogs and people. Each year, many people come to Instep for the fair and for a chance to hear the Megrimum. When Egan comes to visit his Uncle Anson and Aunt Gertrude, it rains on the first evening of the fair, and the Megrimum is heard. Ada, Egan's cousin, ...more
Rowan
In the small village of Instep, everyone fears the Megrimum, a monster that lives on Kneeknock Rise, the peak of the tallest of the Mammoth Mountains. Nobody knows what this monster looks like or why it lives there, but it is believed that the storms anger him, and the cats of the village who chose to climb the mountain have seen him.
Nobody dares to climb the mountain, but when a boy named Egan visits the town, he decides to do so once and for all. What is the truth to Kneeknock Rise?

Althoug
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Janeen-san
This is a brilliant little book, by Natalie Babbitt, author of Tuck Everlasting, another great book.
I finished this book, only 118 pages, in one day! It was very well written. Kneeknock Rise tells the story of a young boy called Egan as he takes a dare from his rude cousin and climbs the dangerous Knee-knock Rise to slay the deadly Megrimum, a monster who has been harming the villagers.
What he discovers there will change everything and everyone--and he will see how strong the power of believin
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Jill
A very enjoyable, thought-provoking read.

loved this description:
"A mumble of thunder complained from far away and then the clouds parted and the moon rode free. Instantly the mist was luminous, and Egan, with a gasp, felt as if he had suddenly been tucked inside a bubble. Looking up, he saw the moon as a shapeless radiance, like a candle seen through steamy glass. Each drop of moisture in the mist had become a tiny prism, filtering and fanning the dim light into a million pale rainbows of softe
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Aleisha
This little ditty is BARELY squeaking out three stars from me. Well, shoot...I just couldn't love it. I just couldn't get excited about it. It had it's moments of subtle profundity and beauty, and a few of the characters were interesting. This just wasn't what I was expecting from the creator of the extraordinary, "Tuck Everlasting." I was set to give the book two stars until I read a review on the back of the book: "a wonderfully fluent fable about man's need to have something to believe in...s ...more
Daniel Perales
Jan 25, 2011 Daniel Perales rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: any one
Recommended to Daniel by: no one
So far the book is about Egan who visit's his uncle and aunt gertrude but what he doesn't know is that his uncle Ott climbed kneeknock rise and hasn't returned. But as he continue's his life with his uncle anson and aunt gertrude.when the fair is in town he buy's a beatiful necklace for his mom and his cousin anna tease's him and dare him to climb "The Rise" and he does. annabelle a dog of Ott follows Egan all the way to the top of "The Rise" and find out that annabelle is with his uncle who is ...more
Pat Jorgenson Waterchilde
Very entertaining. I read it for a elementary school book club and enjoyed it. Delightful reading with a wise ending. Sometimes it is great to read children's book. the world does look different as we vision the world through a child's eyes.
Mike
A cute story that I am sure I would have loved as a child. This would also be a good read aloud for young children who haven't learned the skill of prolonged listening over the course of weeks.

Good safe story for young ears.
Janis
Everyone in the village of Instep is afraid of the Megrimum, a monster they believe leaves at the top of the low hill Kneeknock Rise. Though none have seen the beast, they can hear scary sounds when it rains--at it rains frequently.

Young Egan visits relatives living at the base of the Rise, just in time for the annual fair. The story of the Megrimum intrigues him, as does the sudden disappearance of Uncle Ott, who is feared a victim of the monster.

Upon a dare from his young spoiled cousin, Egan
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Elizabeth Wallace
Feb 05, 2008 Elizabeth Wallace rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Most people, but not the ones who can't stand a little boring-ness
This book is very good, but very simple (typical Natalie Babbit). It's about a boy who goes to visit his aunt and uncle and cousin near Kneeknock Rise (sound familiar?), a cliff famous for the sound of the monster in the mountains who the townsfolk can hear when it rains. Egan, the boy becomes curious. Will he really climb to the top? If he did, what will he find when he gets there? The monster? The remains of his uncle? Or his uncle alive and well? And last, and most likely, nothing?

Very well
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What's The Name o...: YA Book Set in a Mountain Village - Mysterious? [s] 13 62 Jun 29, 2014 09:09PM  
What's The Name o...: SOLVED. townspeople/villagers at base of mountain fear "monster" (noises coming from mountain) [s] 6 53 Mar 19, 2013 08:01PM  
MCC Children's Li...: Week Novel 1 2 Feb 13, 2012 12:31PM  
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1954
Natalie Babbitt was born Natalie Zane Moore on July 28, 1932, in Dayton, Ohio. She attended Laurel School for Girls, and then Smith College. She has 3 children and is married to Samuel Fisher Babbitt. She is a grandmother of 3 and lives in Rhode Island.

She is also a board member of the National Children's Book and Literacy Alliance a national not-for-profit that actively advocates for literacy, li
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More about Natalie Babbitt...
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“But it's enough, just having this day. It's the knowing there's something different, something special up there waiting. It's the knowing you could choose to change your days--climb up there and throw yourself right down the throat of the only and last and greatest terrible secret in the world. Except you don't climb up.” 16 likes
“Facts are the barren branches on which we hang the dear, obscuring foliage of our dreams.” 5 likes
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