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Little Manfred [Hardcover]

Michael Morpurgo , Michael Foreman
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
RRP: £12.99
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Book Description

9 Jun 2011

The heart-lifting, heartbreaking new story by Michael Morpurgo, the nation’s favourite storyteller.

In the Imperial War Museum is a wooden Dachshund, carved by a German prisoner of war for the children of the British family with which he stayed after the fighting ended. This is the story of how it got there…

When the Bismarck sinks, one of the only German survivors is taken on board a British ship as a prisoner of war. Sent to live with a host family, Walter must adapt to a new way of life, in the heart of an enemy country. Gradually, though, he finds a friend in ten-year-old Grace. So when the time finally comes to go back to Germany, it’s an emotional parting, with Walter leaving Grace with only a carved wooden dog to remember him by. The question is, will Walter and Grace ever meet again? In 1966, with the World Cup coming to Britain, that opportunity may just have come along…

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollinsChildren'sBooks (9 Jun 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007339666
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007339662
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 21.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 63,646 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Multi-award winning author, Michael Morpurgo, is one of Britain's best-loved writers for children and has won many prizes, including the Smarties Prize, The Writers Guild Award and the Blue Peter Book Award for his recent novel, Private Peaceful, which has also had two successful runs as a play devised by Bristol Old Vic. From 2003 to 2005 he was the Children's Laureate, a role which took him all over the UK to promote literacy and reading, and in 2005 he was named the Booksellers Association Author of the Year.

Product Description


“Nobody can balance old and new better, or more convincingly.” – The Independent

“[Morpurgo] really is a master at this sort of thing; not a word is wasted." – The Telegraph

“Morpurgo is a virtuoso at conjuring vibrant stories that draw on historical events." – The Observer Review

“This is a very touching, absorbing story vividly bringing events to life." – Primary Times

"A treat for all ages and abilities to enjoy." – Primary Times

“This book is perfect for anybody who wants to find out about the Second World War and how it affected real people.” – First News

"Foreman's water-colour illustrations are a perfect counterpoint to the text… This is a book which can be enjoyed by, and give something to, many age groups." – School Librarian

About the Author

Michael Morpurgo OBE is one of Britain’s best-loved writers for children. He has written over 100 books and won many prizes, including the Smarties Prize, the Blue Peter Book Award and the Whitbread Award. His recent bestselling novels include ‘Shadow’, ‘A Medal for Leroy’ and ‘Little Manfred’.

His novel ‘War Horse’ has been successfully adapted as a West End and Broadway theatre play and a major film by Steven Spielberg. A former Children’s Laureate, Michael is also the co-founder, with his wife Clare, of the charity Farms for City Children.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful heart-lifting story 26 July 2011
By C. Colley TOP 500 REVIEWER
Michael Morpurgo's latest book is based upon "Little Manfred", a wooden Daschund dog which was donated to the Imperial War Museum, a few years ago. Michael Foreman's added illustrations and his idea for the included football theme add the finishing touches to the story.
One summer's day, Charley and her younger brother, Alex, are walking their dog Manfred on the beach and by chance start talking to two gentlemen. The children discover that one of the men, Walter, had been a German prisoner of war and had worked and lived on their farm in 1945. Walter recalls his wartime experiences and the time he spent on the farm, and the story goes on to reveal why a little wooden pull-along toy is so special, particularly to Charley and Alex's mum, Grace.
As with all Michael Morpurgo's books, this story will delight and educate, young and older readers. I particularly like his war time stories and the inspirations behind them.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Little Manfred 25 July 2011
Even before I read the story I was delighted with the presentation of the book.

Not too much writing on the pages, (beneficial for a child) and the most beautiful pictures. Certainly a book I will keep on my bookshelf for its presentation alone.

Micheal Morpurgo does not talk down to children. The Story is based on facts and makes very interesting reading as well as imparting knowledge to the children who read it. There are facts about the end of the 2nd world war and about football.
I can highly recommend it to anyone, young or old.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful children's book 24 July 2011
Length: 0:21 Mins
In the Imperial War Museum there is a wooden Dachshund. It was carved by a German prisoner of war in the 1940s. This is its story. Well almost. It's a story that captures the spirit of the true story though.
In the summer of 1966, just after England's famous footballing victory against the Germans in the World Cup Final, a young girl, her brother and their dog encounter two men on the beach. One has a story to tell about the girl's mother from when she also was a little girl during the second World War. It's a story about friendship and kindness, both heart warming and tragic that begins with two German friends going to war on the fated German battleship Bismarck. Michael Morpurgo tells a moving and nostalgic story, deeply shadowed by the conflict of nations but brightened by the hope and peaceful humanity of ordinary people. He's aided by Michael Foreman's beautiful sketches, brought to bright summer life by water colour. I'd say this would be ideal for the 8-10 reading age group but really I don't see why this can't be enjoyed by ages of any number. It certainly would be a great starting point for summer projects, perhaps investigating the untold stories of parents from when they were children. As the cover states, "The past is all around us."

There is also an afterword about the history touched on in the story and a short chapter about Michael Foreman's memories of that World Cup... and another dog, this time named Pickles, who saved the day.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tale of Toys 27 Feb 2012
By Poohbaa
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
A beautiful tale from World War Two about German POWs and the activities they took part in whilst they were held in the UK, Themephasis is on one little wooden toy doy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars the best book in the hole intire world 4 Sep 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I like the way michael morpugo writes his stories with things that are actually true.
Michael is also a great author one of the best in the world in my opinion I have recommended this book five star because there's something about it that wants to make you read on which is the same with all michaels books and especially born to run.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Two People Divided by War, United by a Toy Dog 17 July 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
What might one ask has the sinking of the Bismarck, German POW working on a farm, Geoff Hurst's second goal in the 1966 Wembley World Cup final, and the Imperial War Museum? Not much, one might reply. Michael Morpurgo, however, has put his little grey cells into overdrive and come up with a small wooden child's toy named "Little Manfred".

Since 2007, in a climate of distrust and depression, when nations are beginning to turn into themselves, and consider recovery and assistance should immediately begin on the home front, they feel orders coming from abroad demanding further, greater economic sacrifices to prop up greedy people from Southern Europe - Greek, Portuguese, Spanish, and Italian, and the Irish, as not possible. The difficulties that these people are now facing, some believe, is a sign of their own weakness, of their own making, and entirely their own fault. This is actually putting the clock back seventy years, and tearing up the hopes of those idealists like Adenauer, Monnet, Schumann, and Spaak who wished to form a "United" Europe of nations, free of hatreds, conflicts, and future costly bloody wars.

When two Bavarians, Walter and Manfred, went to War in 1939, joining the German navy, the Kriegsmarine, they showed they were good fighters, and heroes for the Fatherland; the enemy was always presented as bad, something obviously which would have been inverted if the two came from the hostile country and had served on a HM ship. Their ship was destroyed on the high seas, and hundreds of their friends were left to drown. That seemed at the time a cruel, heinous and criminal act. Amongst these wicked people, however, were some good who stood out as they wanted to help them.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
My 12yr old dyslexic daughter is reading this at the moment. Can't really go wrong with Michael!!
Published 6 days ago by Mrs Amanda Main
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 2 months ago by nannyears
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
a great story set just after the war how two sides were affected by the war
Published 2 months ago by pauline tuckwell
5.0 out of 5 stars It was awesome
it was awesome and I liked everything cos its awesome dub aMm k, dub zinc x,h, and Jen , snow set
Published 6 months ago by Mansoor Ahmed Khan
5.0 out of 5 stars Little Manfred
Bought this for my granddaughter, she loved it (9years old). I shall read it to my other grandchildren when they do the next sleepover.
Published 7 months ago by kz spark
5.0 out of 5 stars Another wonderful story
It can only be 5 star when it's MIchael Morpurgo. He has told the story in such a sympathetic way. He shows that war is does not always end in tragedy. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Mrs. Evelyn M. Weall
4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
I love this book.It really makes you think of what is happening and how it's happening.It has inspired me.It's brilliant!
Published 9 months ago by fizzy milkshake
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent
This book was purchased as a gift and the child found it very interesting and easy to read with pictures
Published 9 months ago by Mr Colin A Goodall
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, heart warming book
Very good book and perfect for a short, quick read. I definitely recommend this book from ages nine to thirteen.
Published 12 months ago by Sarah Deakin
5.0 out of 5 stars Little Manfred by Michael Morpurgo
This book is a gripping, tear Sharing novel it's five stars no question about it! I would seriously recommend it to everyone
Published 13 months ago by Chris Sawers
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