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David and the Phoenix

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  640 ratings  ·  112 reviews
With a tremendous surge of its wings, the Phoenix managed to seize a branch. David's legs slipped from the bird's back, and he dangled over the abyss.
Thus ends the near-disaster of their first flight together. But don't underestimate the Phoenix! Failure only makes David's new-found friend determinded to get into shape so that David's education for Life can proceed.
Hardcover, 173 pages
Published July 15th 2001 by Purple House Press (first published 1957)
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4.22  · 
Rating details
 ·  640 ratings  ·  112 reviews

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Sep 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A dear friend sent me a 1957 hardback edition of this lovely little book. Savoring it over the week.

Finished last night. Could not put it down, can't believe that I missed this one when I was young. Hoping for grandchildren eventually so that I can read it to them.
Erik Graff
Mar 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: kids in need
Recommended to Erik by: it was on the library cart in elementary school
Shelves: literature
Other than Dr. Seuss' Cat in the Hat, this may have been the first book I ever read on my own. It left an indelible impression and would occasionally mentioned in conversations about reading and childhood over the years. Unlike the Seuss, it was what kids nowadays call "a chapter book"--no pictures except at the head of chapters.

The plot, as I've recalled it over the years, is basically about a lonely little boy who moves to the country, and, having no alternatives and having natural curiosity,
Margo Berendsen
This is one of my childhood favorites and now I'm reading it to my kids. My copy is seriously old - I think 1960's - and I was THRILLED to discover that it's not only on Goodreads, but there is a sort of small cult following for it!

Do you know the difference between a gryffin, gryffon and a gryffen? Where sea monsters like to sleep? How a banshee can be quite helpful for repelling Scientists? How to out-race a witch on a new broomstick?

This book is a treasure trove of little adventures, but the
Dec 31, 2012 rated it really liked it
You know, I think I've read this book before . . . a long, long time ago (though in the local galaxy).

Even as a child's read-aloud book, it wouldn't be so highly rated today, but for a young reader struggling with sounding out the words the style and repetition is a great learning tool. The pomposity of the Phoenix was just enough for someone eight or so years old to get the joke and feel inside.

This Gutenberg edition includes Joan Rayso's enjoyable pen-and-ink illustrations.

A very good read for
Jul 14, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children
I am so glad that "David and the Phoenix" has been republished because my family has fought over our tattered, yellow copy for years. It is a FANTASTIC book. Well-written fantasy. Wonderful imagery. Highly recommended.
Michael Fitzgerald
Dec 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
A nice fantasy book of the kind that don't seem to be written anymore. Some have made comparisons with Harry Potter, but I don't see that (apart from there being a phoenix). It does have some similarities to The Enormous Egg (with establishment types being the enemy) and even The Phantom Tollbooth with its clever approach to language.
Apr 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
Truly delightful and inspired fantasy adventure. I think that if I'd read this when I was nine or ten years old that it would have been my favorite book. There's a bit of the Peabody and Sherman relationship between David and the Phoenix (and I couldn't tell you which came first). The adventures are inspired. My favorite was the encounter with the faun - perhaps it's because I'm a great fan of Mr. Tumnus - who knows. The book was well written, good natured and entertaining throughout.
This is a fun story, but I would warn parents that there are some questionable parts that may nor be appropriate for younger children.

For example, the word 'stupid' is used several times, as is the reference to someone slitting another's throat. Also, funeral pyres are discussed, as well as electrocution. I would caution parents to be mindful of their child's maturity level before reading this book together.

Still, our oldest daughter and I enjoyed the production, chuckling often at the silly p
This story is AMAZINGGGG!!!! What a hidden gem! How is this book not more well known? It's the best thing that I've read in a long while. To think that it's geared towards children... I say that this book is for the whole family to enjoy. It's loaded with adventure, humor, suspense, MYTHICAL CREATURES, and good fun.

My favorite moment has to be when the town thought a burglar was going about every window...

I had hoped for a more satisfying close to the story as it ended in a bad place, but this b
Aug 10, 2017 rated it liked it
A very enjoyable story, although the ending felt too abrupt for my tastes.
Tirzah Eleora
Aug 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars. A quirky and endearing tale of a small boy who meets a Phoenix on the mountain behind his new house, and the adventures they have together. It lacks depth and detail that would make it more memorable, and the end is somewhat unsatisfactory, but it was a very enjoyable read.
Feb 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: gutenberg
adorable. i see i neednt worry about what to give the children in my family for their birthdays this year.
Jul 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
Five stars because this book was my youthful introduction (via a young peoples book club) to the world of reading outside my parents urging and the classroom and it instilled an admiration for a good story that's told well. Because of David and the Phoenix I read widely diverse books and laid a foundation for getting in trouble in school for reading far beyond my grade level.
"Vivo, vives, vive..."
Friend of Pixie (F.O.P.)
Reviews said that before there was Harry Potter, there was David and The Phoenix. Written in 1958, it looked charming. I found an audio production done by a full cast, with the author as the narrator and Logan loved it! He listened to it several times on a long overseas trip. I heard bits and pieces and thought it seemed well-paced for him and not too scary.
Aug 13, 2011 rated it it was ok
It was ok. Cute, not much to it.
Nov 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I have memories of DAVID AND THE PHOENIX by Edward Ormondroyd from 1958 when it was a Weekly Reader Book Club edition. After I recently learned that the author had written more books, I decided I needed to re-read the book as it has stayed with me for so many years. I found that it has an almost cult following.
Again, it did not disappoint. David, a young boy, has just moved to a new house where there is a mountain in the back yard. Eager to explore, he climbs the mountain and meets a majestic, m
Russell Atkinson
Jan 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
As with other reviewers, this charming story is a childhood favorite of mine. David is a boy of ten or so who has just moved into a new house at the foot of a mountain. He explores the mountain and discovers The Phoenix, a huge talking bird who is vain, pretentious, and adventure-loving. He and David become fast friends. Since it's summer vacation David spends every day climbing the mountain and going on adventures with the Phoenix. They meet a witch, gryffens and gryphons, a faun and other myth ...more
Jun 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a "classic" that I had never heard of until it was recommended by a lovely local indie bookstore employee. There are really only two characters- David and the Phoenix! - and the book chronicles their adventures.

I read it to my kids aged almost 5 and 8. I really enjoyed it and found the plot and language delightful. My 4 year old seemed to have a bit of difficulty keeping up with it, but my 8 yo remained engaged throughout. I wouldn't say it captured his imagination the way My Father's D
Rebecca Scott
This was quite possibly my first exposure to mythical creatures and entranced me when I first found the hardback book on a shelf at my grandparent's house. It founds its way to the bookshelves of my own childhood home and later, when my parents were downsizing, I grabbed it in all its tattered, aging glory.

I often think that Dumbledore's phoenix is a secret homage to the original Phoenix who led David through so many adventures.

The artwork is delightful too.

All ages
No sex
Jul 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have been trying to find the book of my grade school years that my teacher read to the class about the phoenix. I could only remember the ending when the phoenix came back to life. I'm not certain, but I think this is what I have been trying to recollect for nearly 50 years! It was a wonderful read and I am certainly glad to have spent another day under the spell of this delightful author!
Nov 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Oh, what a wonderful fantasy book from before there was such a genre! My older brothers introduced me to this book as a child and I was captivated. I was also compelled to read up on creatures such as phoenix, griffins, banshees, fauns and nymphs. Beautiful anthropomorphizing and character building of the Phoenix. All in all, a wonderful book.
Jan 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
The tone is almost exactly like The Reluctant Dragon by Kenneth Grahame, but it's a good deal longer, and slightly more contemporary. It's hard for me to judge this with fresh eyes since it was a book a loved dearly as a child.
Michael Bennett
Jan 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, fiction, classics
First time reading this book and if I had kids I would surely read it to them too. I think it's a book that will fill kids with wonder and awe. I'm surprised it has not been made into a movie. What a great piece of work. It instantly became a classic for me.
Judith Swartz
Sep 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
this book was read to me and my fourth grade classmates by a wonderful teacher. i loved it so much then that i thought i’d try it again, a mere 58 years later. i still loved it.
Chris Schmehl
Apr 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Chris by: W G Sarig librarian Mrs. Graveneise
I read this book as a young kid. I enjoyed it. I liked it enough to remember it after all these years. It reminds me a bit of The Sword in the Stone and Puff the Magic Dragon.
Feb 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: personal-library
Wished it was longer and didn’t have such a abrupt ending. Wonderful book in spite of that. Reminded me of a Nesbit story.
Linda Smith
Mar 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I first read this book back in 1958 because my parents had enrolled me for a year in the Children's Book Club. I have lost count of the number of times I have read David and the Phoenix but, apparently, I am still young enough to enjoy it. The book opens as David and his family are moving into a new house. His backyard ends at a mountain. David has never seen a mountain before and is fascinated by the sight. It is only the first of many fascinating sights that this young boy will behold. Upon cl ...more
Sep 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Summary: After David and his family move to a new home in the country, David is left to explore his new, unchartered territory. While exploring the mountain near his home, David stumbles upon something he has never seen before: the mystical Phoenix! The Phoenix quickly realizes that he must teach David about the mystical being and truths about Life. He takes David through the mystical realms, in which they meet mythical beings. These include mythical beings such as banshees and trickester leprec ...more
Jun 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
With a tremendous surge of its wings, the Phoenix managed to seize a branch. David's legs slipped from the bird's back, and he dangled over the abyss.
Thus ends the near-disaster of their first flight together. But don't underestimate the Phoenix! Failure only makes David's new-found friend determinded to get into shape so that David's education for Life can proceed.
And...more With a tremendous surge of its wings, the Phoenix managed to seize a branch. David's legs slipped from the bird's back,
Dec 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
David is thrilled to move into his new house, because he's got a mountain just beyond his backyard that begs to be explored. And the mountain has plenty of secrets---including one very extraordinary bird, the Phoenix! Summer vacation has seldom been more interesting.

The short, simple story wastes no time getting right to the glory within: a legendary bird, an innocent young boy, and an unusual friendship for both. The Phoenix, with its near-500 years of knowledge and wisdom, pontificating person
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Edward Ormondroyd grew up in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, and Ann Arbor, Michigan. During WWII he served onboard a destroyer escort, participating in the invasions of Okinawa and Iwo Jima.

After the war he attended the University of California at Berkeley, where he received a bachelor's degree in English. Later he went back for a master's degree in library science.

He lived in Berkeley for 25 years, wo