Linda Lipko's Reviews > The Whipping Boy

The Whipping Boy by Sid Fleischman
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's review
Feb 26, 2012

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bookshelves: newbery-winner, newbery-award-author, young-adult
Read in March, 2009

In this 1987 Newberry Medal award-winning book, living a charmed life in the castle, Prince Brat does not have to behave -- he has Jeremy, his lower class whipping boy to take the punishment for his rude, insolent, nasty behavior.

Jeremy dreams of escaping back to his previous life as a rat catcher in the sewer, living in the dark tunnels away from the sharp whip cracks that sting and cut. He suddenly gets the opportunity to flee, only Prince Horace is the one instigating the escape.

In a Prince in the Pauper fashion, Prince Horace is now stripped of his loftiness and Jeremy is assumed to be the prince as together they are captured by "Hold-Your-Noise Billy" and "Cutwater." These two ogre like characters stalk Prince Brat and Jeremy throughout the countryside where they meet Betsy and Petunia the dancing bear.

In fairy tale fashion, there is a happy ending and the Price becomes humbled and a better person.

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