Academic journal article New England Reading Association Journal

The Gawgon and the Boy

Academic journal article New England Reading Association Journal

The Gawgon and the Boy

Article excerpt

ALEXANDER, LLOYD. (2001). The Gawgon and the Boy. New York: Dutton Children's Books. ISBN 0-525-46677-0.

Though our teachers taught us never to judge a book by its cover, we must admit that the cover drew us initially to this book. With illustrations of the Great Sphinx, Sherlock Holmes, Napoleon, and the Mona Lisa all in one picture, how could we resist the temptation to find out how any author could successfully weave so many diverse characters into a single story? Yet, in this novel, Alexander has created a masterpiece worthy of these distinguished figures.

Set at the start of the Great Depression, David, the eleven-year-old main character, becomes too ill to attend school and, instead, is home-schooled by his aging aunt, a retired schoolteacher. Combining her great imagination with her often non-traditional teaching methods, David learns a great deal about academics as well as the world around him. Aunt Annie has a great wit and David appreciates every moment of his tutoring sessions under which his artwork and writing skills flourish. There are many moments of laugh out loud humor sprinkled throughout the book that will not be lost on many readers. …

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