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The Dwindling Party

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4.65  ·  Rating Details  ·  210 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Pop-up illustrations and verses divulge how, one by one, six members of the MacFizzet family monstrously disappear during a visit to Hickyacket Hall, leaving behind only young Neville, who expects "it was all for the best."
Hardcover, Random House Books for Young Readers, 12 pages
Published September 12th 1982 by Random House
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 385)
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Jane
Feb 22, 2013 Jane rated it it was amazing
My father bought this pop-up book at the Smithsonian in the early 1980's for my young daughter. I was told to keep it and only let her read it when she was sitting with me. So the pop-ups still work! A great tale, a little dark but then again my child was a lover of things that were a little dark or odd.

We have toured his home in Sandwich, MA several times - I recommend a visit if you are ever on Cape Cod.
Lysmerry
Oct 27, 2011 Lysmerry rated it it was amazing
I've had this book since early childhood.
I still dream about it, and it's instilled in me a lifelong love of secret gardens, urns, and topiary.
As a small child I didn't realize that this this book was morbid or macabre. I simply I played with it and helped the monster hands swoop the family members to oblivion, toying with but never realizing the repercussions of senseless loss.
I've gone through several phases, but always been attracted to gothic elements and even written my own comics- perhap
...more
Magda
Feb 10, 2009 Magda rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens, own, horror, poetry
I know I had written a review ...

This childhood favorite of mine was Teddy's first pop-up book. He had been crying, but stopped as I kept reading, opening his eyes for the turning of the page, and was all agog at the pop-up pages.

I enjoyed rereading the rhymes, of course, and wish I had more information on the family.
Erinn
Jun 15, 2008 Erinn rated it it was amazing
Shelves: humor
I first saw this book as a little girl while in the library. I remember eagerly turning the pages, and being a little confused that someone would make a children's book so morbid.

Now that I have my own copy, I still eagerly turn the pages. But I'm not as confused any more.
Andrew Schwartz
Jul 06, 2009 Andrew Schwartz rated it it was amazing
One of my favorite books when I was a child, both for the whimsical drawings and matter-of-fact tone which contrasted so nicely with the macabre subject matter. I used to read it whenever I visited my grandmother in Sarasota. She left me her copy when she passed on.
Mathew
There once was a family whose name was MacFizzet
(Two parents, five children) who only last fall
Put on their best clothes and then set out to visit
The varied distractions of Hickyacket Hall.

This is the first Gorey that I have encountered apart from seeing what @tygertale has on his blog. Wonderfully dark and macabre, I would love to share this with children and see what they make of watching each of young Neville's family being devoured as you turn the pages. The interactive nature of the book me
...more
Lenore Appelhans
Daniel found this in a used bookstore in excellent condition. Only Neville escapes the horrors of this gothic estate, but as we know from The Gashlycrumb Tinies, he later dies of ennui.
Pam
Aug 25, 2014 Pam rated it it was amazing
The party dwindles one by one in this awesomely weird pop up book.
Christy Head
Jan 12, 2012 Christy Head rated it it was ok
Gothic, and unrepentantly, almost matter-of-factly morose and true to Gorey's signature style. This pop-up book has lovely illustrations and the pop-up element seems to detract from rather than add-to the book though it may give the story more appeal to younger children. This is not an especially clever book but still a decent read
Jraven
Dec 15, 2009 Jraven rated it it was amazing
A wonderfully macabre childrens book. The pop-ups and illustrations are very detailed and is a book where you will discover something new almost every time you read the story. One of my favorites as a child. Unfortunately out of print. Published by Random House.
Nancy
Jan 11, 2013 Nancy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
I don't know who gave me this book, but I am thankful that they did. I've had this book forever and I *love* it. It's a bit macabre, but that's part of what makes it so fun. Sadly, it's out of print. Luckily for me, I have my own copy. :)
Kim
Jan 05, 2011 Kim rated it it was amazing
We had this book as a child before I ever realized how darkly funny it is- I only wish we had kept better care of it and still had the original version.
Autumn
Dec 11, 2008 Autumn rated it it was amazing
Beautiful Pop-up book. So fun and quirky. Clever and amusing. Wonderful illustrations, of course. Easily one of my favorite Edward Gorey books.
Aja
Apr 10, 2008 Aja rated it it was amazing
one of the few books that he did in color, rhymes, and it's a POP-UP!
(everyone dies except the little boy)
Lisbeth Solberg
Fascinatingly creepy. Willy-Wonkian mishaps but without the underlying justice.
Michael Larson
Nov 24, 2012 Michael Larson rated it it was amazing
It's an Edward Gorey pop-up book! What more could you ask for in life??
Michael
Aug 30, 2010 Michael rated it it was amazing
An awesome gift from an awesome friend. Gorey was such a genius.
Kara
Feb 21, 2010 Kara rated it did not like it
Shelves: mystery

This book scared the &%$@#@* out of me as a child.

Elizabeth
The dwindling party by Edward Gorey (1982)
Valerie
Jul 15, 2008 Valerie rated it it was amazing
This is my favorite pop-up book.
Brian
Nov 17, 2011 Brian rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-comic
Signed first edition
Charliqingfen X
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Yann Tanguay rated it it was amazing
Feb 06, 2016
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Born in Chicago, Gorey came from a colorful family; his parents, Helen Dunham Garvey and Edward Lee Gorey, divorced in 1936 when he was 11, then remarried in 1952 when he was 27. One of his step-mothers was Corinna Mura, a cabaret singer who had a brief role in the classic film Casablanca. His father was briefly a journalist. Gorey's maternal great-grandmother, Helen St. John Garvey, was a popular ...more
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