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The Lost Happy Endings Paperback – 7 Jul 2008

28 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (7 July 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747581061
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747581062
  • Product Dimensions: 24.1 x 0.5 x 30.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,451 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Carol Ann Duffy lives in Manchester, where she is Professor and Creative Director of the Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University. She has written for both children and adults, and her poetry has received many awards, including the Signal Prize for Children's Verse, the Whitbread and Forward Prizes, and the Lannan and E. M. Forster Prize in America. In 2005, she won the T. S. Eliot Prize for Rapture. In 2009, she was appointed Poet Laureate.

Product Description

Review

'A powerful book for older readers' TES 'A marriage made in picture book heaven - Duffy's lyrical prose matched with Jane Ray's rich, magical illustrations' Financial Times 'This evocative story has particularly beautiful illustrations' Daily Mail

About the Author

Carol Ann Duffy lives in Manchester and is a renowned poet and winner of the Whitbread Award and T.S. Eliot Award. She has published several collections of poetry for children and this is her first full-length colour picture book. Jane Ray lives in London (N10) and is equally respected as an illustrator. Her books are received with great acclaim and she has been shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal as well as won the Smarties Award and Mother Goose Award. This is Jane's second book for Bloomsbury.

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By J. Tregenza on 14 Mar. 2008
Format: Hardcover
We have used this book with more than 50 schools, the language is rich, the illustrations are inspiring and when you read to the point when she finds a golden pen the children cannot help but want to write. The beautiful descriptions help children to become lost in the world and their imagination takes them into the woods where Jub lives. They love to explore her home and how she lives. Children from age 5-11 have loved to listen to us telling the story and have become spell-bound.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful By jen, on 4 Jan. 2007
Format: Hardcover
A dark and powerful picture book for older children, Jane Ray's illustrations perfectly complement Carol Ann Duffy's beautiful prose. Duffy brings a fantastic lyricism to the language that is all too often lacking in children's books. The witch has "fierce red eyes like poisonous berries" and her touch "nipped like pepper". Children's literature is much richer for this partnership - more please!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By S. Hankinson on 14 Oct. 2010
Format: Paperback
The Lost Happy Endings

Carol Ann Duffy's book is an outstanding masterpiece with beautiful illustrations and packed with powerful similes. This is the story of a six-fingered magical girl, who is the guardian of all the happy endings. Unfortunately, the happy endings are stolen by a haggard, demonic witch. After this every child in the land experiences nightmares and begins to wet the bed!!! In our opinion, this book is suitable for ages 7+.

By The Detectives
St Mary's C of E Primary School
Cadishead
Salford
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Merdych on 6 Feb. 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm a school librarian, with a deep interest in P4C (Philosophy for Children) and was looking for books to add to the stimuli bank. This seemed a likely candidate, but I was a little wary due to some of the reviews. However, I thought I'd chance it for a little over £[..].

Books such as these are designed to make the reader (including young children) think. (Why IS that bit written in a different font, for example?) No doubt the people who have such negative thoughts about this are the same sort who won't read "Not Now, Bernard" because it "is about a little boy who is eaten by a monster". If the parents can't or won't think, what chance do the children have?
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By MissyOwl on 29 Jan. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The lost happy endings' is a magical book with beautiful illustrations, My son loved it and even my daughter who is 25 was entranced by the lovely images. A short and clever story supported by fabulous pictures.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kevin O'Toole on 22 Dec. 2014
Format: Paperback
Which I suppose is a bit ironic, that in a book about getting the right endings to bedtime stories, the author didn't manage to come up with a satisfactory ending for her own book.

Spoilers ahead if that matters.

The good points:
The main character is a 6-fingered girl who lives in a tree and whose job it is is to release all of the happy endings for children's bedtime stories into the night so that the children can sleep peacefully. One night a witch robs her of her bag of happy endings, which leads to all the traditional fairy tales ending horribly and children having nightmares. The main character dreams of finding a magic golden pen that can write on the sky and when she wakes up the pen is there.

All of this is brilliant, magical and imaginative and wondrous, what's really poor is what she chooses to do with it.

With a magic pen whose stories come true, she decides to write that the witch burns to death trying to light a fire and that the smell of her burning to death leads the main character to the bag of happy endings. She has a magic pen whose stories apparently come true, and that's the best solution she can come up with? Seems to teach children to be petty and vengeful in my opinion. She could have spent the night writing her own endings to the bedtime stories, she could write that when the witch finds out what she's stolen she becomes repentant, she could do anything! All the details of what makes the witch a witch are things that the main character writes into reality herself! The witch could have been a proper villain who's grand plan is foiled instead of just a bully who dies for pushing someone over.
Read more ›
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Gra & Co on 27 Jan. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It's beautifully illustrated and a very interesting story.

Some reviewers recommend this for older children because it might be a bit scary at points I suppose. What I can say is that our 4 years old loves it, reads at bedtime and has never complained about it. It comes out time after time.

Thoroughly recommend it!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By doodlebug on 1 Dec. 2007
Format: Hardcover
We borrowed this book from the library this morning and I have just read it to my soon to be 5 year old (unfortunately, as a bed time story). The language used is brilliant, but the story is a bit too scary, including a pretty detailed description of how the witch burns to death, and what she looks like while on fire. Ive seen this book rated in the 0-5 age group, but entirely disagree and think it should be 7-9 and not for faint hearted children. I definately will not be buying this book. I am on here looking for a more cheery story by same author though.
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