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The Duchess of Whimsy

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating Details  ·  548 Ratings  ·  128 Reviews
The great New Yorker artist Peter de Seve teams up with the author of bestselling Toy Boat in a slightly outrageous fairy tale. The Duchess of Whimsy is fancy and fussy—and definitely not ordinary—surrounding herself with wild friends, fabulous foods, and fancy dress. The Earl of Norm (ho hum) is completely ordinary, but he adores the Duchess. She ignores him, until the ch ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published October 29th 2009 by Philomel Books
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Aug 09, 2011 Miriam rated it liked it
Recommended to Miriam by: Abigail A.
Shelves: picture
The de Sèves use a princess (although they are referred to as Duke and Duchess, their fathers are kings, so they are really a prince and princess) to sugarcoat a fairly standard, if worthwhile, message for children: get to know people before you judge them.

The vibrant Duchess has a court of quirky characters who party non-stop. Nothing is too wild, crazy, or original for them, they can never have too much fun and excitement. Poor Norm has a mad pash for the Duchess, but she thinks he's a bore a
Lisa Vegan
Feb 20, 2010 Lisa Vegan rated it really liked it
Recommended to Lisa by: Chandra
Well, through the first half of this I was laughing so much I wondered how I could ever read it aloud to children.

This is actually one of the best love stories I’ve ever read. It’s about how two very different people (the “whimsical” and the “normal”) find common ground, and also find that they’re not as different from each other as they’d thought. It’s an entertaining story and it’s not overly message heavy It’s funny and sweet, but not overly sweet. Also, aside from the obvious message, one co
Feb 25, 2010 Kathryn rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Kathryn by: Chandra
4.5 STARS. I've waited eagerly for our library to acquire a copy of this, having been won over by the lovely cover art and cute title. I must say, it was worth the wait!!! It's a wonderful and deeply honest take on the typical castle-based love story. The Earl of Norm is constantly invited to the Duchess of Whimsy's parties because, as her father says, their kingdoms "must get along." But she finds the Earl so very BORING! Meanwhile, he finds her dazzlingly fascinating and exciting and completel ...more
Sep 07, 2009 Betsy rated it it was amazing
I don’t think that every single picture book out there needs to have a moral, but it’s not a terrible idea if they happen to contain stories that instruct just a tad on the side. Children's stories offer every possible morality tale you can imagine too. Don’t steal. Be polite to your baby sister. Don’t eat food you find on the street (unless, apparently, it has fallen from the sky). The thing about The Duchess of Whimsy is that for all its overwhelming beauty and fun, its moral is based in pract ...more
Mar 15, 2010 Ann rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Ann by: Chandra and Kathryn
I loved, loved, LOVED this book!

First of all, let me say that the illustrations are *perfect* and I wanted to peruse each page slowly and intently to catch every little detail!

As for the story - what a gem!! The Duchess of Whimsy is just what her name suggests. She abhors anything normal... so, of course, the Earl of Norm is, unfortunately, just too boring. He, however, is madly in love with the Duchess.

What I loved about this book was that it really was such a wonderful example of how people ar
Apr 20, 2010 Judith rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books, own
If your child liked Fancy Nancy or Eloise then they will love The Duchess of Whimsy by Randall de Séve. This delight fairytale is a love story, but there is a sweet moral behind it. The Duchess of Whimsy is known throughout the land as the greatest hostess there ever was! Her extravagant soirées are equally matched by the outlandish and stunning costumes that the Duchess of Whimsy adorns. The Duchess of Whimsy is loved by all, especially the Earl of Norm, who is hopelessly in love with her. He p ...more
Mar 16, 2010 Rachel rated it liked it
I think this would be fun to read aloud as a one-one with a child. The illustrations are rich and beautiful, but I don't know how well they would show up from the distance, for a read-aloud to a group of children. I was surprised by the "grown-up" vocabulary used in this book ... words like: soirees, joie de vivre, brocaded, flamboyant, truffle canapes, watercress, quail, glistening, delectable, sumptuous .... the writing has a wonderful candence, and it's wonderful for kids to be exposed to sop ...more
Feb 18, 2010 Esmoi rated it it was amazing
Every time I flip through this book, I can't help but to think of Myers-Briggs personality types. As I see it, this book is about an ISTJ (the Earl of Norm) who falls in love with an ENFP (the Duchess of Whimsy). Hilarity ensues but ultimately the duo come to realize they have a few things in common and, more importantly, they appreciate and value each other's differences. I think the story is awesome and the illustrations are gorgeous and fitting. My four year old didn't quite "get it" but I th ...more
Oh, I like this. I like the lavishly insouciant colored pencil and watercolor illustrations. I like the fun, fancy Duchess, with her penchant for "elaborate attire" and "uncommon conversation." I like the Earl of Norm, who, although he is an intrinsically rather quiet guy, really enjoys the Duchess's spirit, and tries to spice himself up with fancy clothes and a giraffe. And I like that, in the end, he wins her over with a grilled cheese sandwich, and they find that they have more in common than ...more
Josselin D
Oct 05, 2011 Josselin D rated it it was amazing
I love this traditonal literatul book. This book is about a man that created a sandwich with yellow melted cheese and a lady wanted to take a bite so the man offered her to take a bite... (she fell in love with the sandwich thats how she fell in love with the man.) The book was written from a point of view of a man named, "The Earl Of Norm" My schema with this book is that I've tasted a sandwich with yellow melted cheese in the middle. I want to remember that Soirees means a party. I recomend th ...more
Jose B
Oct 20, 2011 Jose B rated it it was amazing
Ami me encanto este libro literatura tradicional.Por que la Duchess de Whimsy no era lo que paresia y el Earl de Norm tambien no era lo que paresia este librotrata de un hombre que quiere la atencion de Duchess de Whimsy y la agaro la atencion de ella porhaser un sanwich de queso muy rico.Mi esquema es que la Duchess de Whimsy le encantan los animales como yo.Mi pregunta es por que mintio el Earl de Norm y la Duchess de Whimsy.Yo le recomiendo este libro a las ninas de mi clase por que le gustan ...more
Jun 10, 2014 Amanda rated it liked it
The Duchess of Whimsy likes very fancy things, including fancy parties ("extravagant soirees") and "peculiar pets" like an octopus and baby elephant with wings. She is incredibly difficult to please and contrasts sharply with the Earl of Norm, who seems rather "ordinary" next to her. What complicates matters is that the Earl of Norm is in love with the Duchess of Whimsy, but finds it impossible to catch her attention. She prances around with toes painted every different color and ignores his ela ...more
Yesli S
Oct 23, 2011 Yesli S rated it it was amazing
A mi me gusta este libro.Este estrata de whimsy que se anamoro duchess porque podia aser los saguches bin rico .yo me recuerdo cuando yo cuando mi mama y papa se conocieron .YO tego una prenguta sobre el libro porque whimsty se quiere anamorase con duchess. yo quiero recordarme la parte cuando duchess se anamoro co whimsy.yo quiero recomendar este libro a MS. Yegge porque a eya le guta mucho leer lo libro.
Oct 21, 2011 Daissy rated it it was amazing
Este libro me encanta porque me recuerda de mama y mi papa conociando.Este libro es Literatura Tradicional.Este libro se trata de una mujer y un senor y el senor le quiere a la mujer pero la mujer no la mujer se ama al el senor porque el le cocino un sandwich de queso.Yoquiero a recomedar este libro a Aimee porque ella es una buen nina y yo quiero que le gusta este libro.Porque la mujer se vestio chistoso.
Gabrielle Blockton
Date: October 7th, 2014

Author: Randall de Seve and Peter de Seve

Title: The Duchess of Whimsy: An Absolutely Delicious Fairy Tale

Plot: The Duchess of Whimsy is an extravagant and over-the-top royal who is adored by many, including the Earl of Norm, a normal and ordinary guy who has always been fond of her and has tried to get her attention and approval.

Setting: Kingdom (Duchesses and Earls)

Characters: Duchess of Whimsy, Earl of Norm

Point-of-View: Third-Person

Theme: Opposites do attract.

Litzy P
Oct 17, 2011 Litzy P rated it liked it
My opinion of the book is i like the .This book is Traditional Literature.This book is about A dutchess and an earl who wernt in love but when the earl was eating hes sandwich the dutchess loved the sandwuch and they fell in love .My eschema of the book is i always want to be a princes.My question is why does the king have a long roble.I recommend this book to my frends.
Bianca A
Oct 28, 2011 Bianca A rated it it was amazing
My opinion of this book is that it was amazing.Its genre is traditinal litature.A quick retelling is that the dad was the king and she wanted to merry the eral by eating one chesse sandwich.My schema of this book is that my aunt merry cause her husband now wanted to merry.My question why did Whymsy merry?I will recomend this book to my friend Ana.
Oct 14, 2011 Carolinaa rated it really liked it
I love this book of ficcion and fairytale because its funny. This book is a baute Whimsy and Earl. Earl is a sorvent and Whimsy is a kuein.My eshema is that my cousen loves to be a kuein and her brother is her sorvent. Wy do they love ichoder. I recomend this book to my cousen because she think that she is the kuein.
Jacqueline G
Oct 17, 2011 Jacqueline G rated it really liked it
I like the book of duchess of whimsy.This book is traditional literature.Is about two people who found in love couse earl tail joke and duchess love his joke.My scema is that i want to be like the authour couse he did the book prity.Why does the king has a long roob.I recommend the book to stephani becauseit is about faritails.
Oct 28, 2011 Eduardo.v rated it it was amazing
I reali like this book because I thot that it was cool and funny.Itsabaut a woman falling in love with a man by eating one sandwich thatthe man cooked.I have a schema for this book.It reminds me of the time when my 3rd grade teacher read a book of chrismas.I recomend this bookto my freand,Jose becouse he likes books.
Nov 02, 2012 Amy rated it really liked it
Great story of how opposites attract. Fun story and beautiful pictures made my niece like this book, and I did too. Nice story to give to a married couple, especially if one spouse is more whimsical than the other. This one made me think of my husband and me.
Colby Sharp
Oct 31, 2011 Colby Sharp rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-book, fantasy
I would have to say that I am a lot more Earl of Norm than Duchess of Whimsy. Cool book.
Jun 06, 2011 Shazzer rated it it was amazing
As posted on Outside of a Dog:

The Duchess of Whimsy lives up to her name. She throws "extravagant soirées", she wears "elaborate attire", holds an "uncommon conversation" and has the "most peculiar pets and acquaintances". She is the hostess with the mostest. The Earl of Norm, on the other hand "is as normal as they come". His clothes, his dog, his conversation, everything was normal, except his love for the Duchess of Whimsy. The Duchess of Whimsy by Randall de Sève, with illustrations by Peter
Apr 16, 2012 Rachel rated it it was amazing
Shelves: text-set
The Duchess of Whimsy is about the ordinary character "the Earl of Norm" who loves the extraordinary character "the Duchess of Whimsy". The two meet and various inter-kingdom gatherings, and the Earl of Norm tries impress the Duchess in ways that do not suit his ordinariness, and the Duchess has no interest in him. One day, when the cook at the castle gets sick, everyone in the castle panics because they do not know how to make the extravagant food they are used to. However, the Earl of Norm rem ...more
Amy Forrester
Nov 02, 2012 Amy Forrester rated it it was amazing
The Duchess of Whimsy was a most unusual woman. She was known throughout the land for her extravagant soirees and fabulous style. The Earl of Norm, on the other hand, was as normal as they come. He dressed in ordinary clothes and discussed sensible topics. The Duchess could see no use for the Earl, but the Earl loved the Duchess’s joie de vivre. The Earl tried to get her attention by borrowing clothes and bringing exotic pets, but his plans always go awry. Until the night that the cook took ill ...more
Homewood Public Library
Jan 11, 2012 Homewood Public Library rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
if your child liked Fancy Nancy or Eloise then they will love The Duchess of Whimsy by Randall de Séve. This delight fairytale is a love story, but there is a sweet moral behind it. The Duchess of Whimsy is known throughout the land as the greatest hostess there ever was! Her extravagant soirées are equally matched by the outlandish and stunning costumes that the Duchess of Whimsy adorns. The Duchess of Whimsy is loved by all, especially the Earl of Norm, who is hopelessly in love with her. He p ...more
Nov 23, 2011 Larissa rated it it was amazing
The Duchess of Whimsy has always been whimsical in her love of all things, well, whimsical. She surrounds herself with strange pets and intriguing people, she wears the most extravagant of dresses and talks of all things peculiar. But the one thing she can not stand is boring normal. Or so everyone thought...

The Earl of Norm has always been quite sensible in his liking of everything normal. He has the most ordinary of pets and dresses in typical clothing. He talks only to the most level-headed o
The Duchess of Whimsy lives up to her name in many respects. She throws wild parties, has crazy friends, and is surrounded by exotic pets. The Earl of Norm also fits his name since he dresses in ordinary clothes and a typical pet, a dog. Despite the fact that they often move in the same circles, the Duchess sees little worth noting in the Earl of Norm until they bond over a grilled cheese sandwich and realize that they have more in common than they might have thought, and that first impressions ...more
Jul 12, 2010 Elfdart rated it really liked it
this is a cute story about the duchess of whimsy and the earl of norm. as the name indicates, the duchess of whimsy is.. whimsical. she loves having fun, bright colours and is the life of the party. and the earl of norm is ‘normal’ aka quiet/ introverted. the earl admires the duchess because of her spirit and tries to get her to notice him, but she thinks he’s normal and doesn’t like him. one day the duchess’s chef gets a cold on the day she’s having one of her parties and so all of the guests b ...more
Aug 02, 2010 Marisa rated it really liked it
This enchanting little love story about a whimsical duchess and her perfectly ordinary admirer is one of my new favorite picture books.

The first time I read it, I thought it was cute but unexceptional. But that night while putting Harper to bed I wanted a new story to tell her, having told the Gunniwolf about five nights in a row. I remembered enough of this one that I decided to give it a go. Harper seemed to really enjoy it, so I decided to check the book back out again. I've since read the b
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