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The Gingerbread Boy
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About the Author

Richard Egielski is the Caldecott Medal-winning illustrator of Hey, Al and many other books for children, including the Tub People series by Pam Conrad. He is also the author and illustrator of Buz and Jazper, both New York Times Best Illustrated Books, Three Magic Balls, and The Gingerbread Boy. Mr. Egielski lives in Milford, New Jersey, with his wife and son. Richard Egielski is the Caldecott Medal-winning illustrator of Hey, Al and many other books for children, including the Tub People series by Pam Conrad. He is also the author and illustrator of Buz and Jazper, both New York Times Best Illustrated Books, Three Magic Balls, and The Gingerbread Boy. Mr. Egielski lives in Milford, New Jersey, with his wife and son.

Reviews

In unembellished text and minutely detailed images, Egielski (Hey, Al) retells the story of a prideful cookie. This version finds a childless couple popping the Gingerbread Boy into the oven in their tiny Manhattan kitchen: "He baked up nice and brown but so hot that he shot right out of the oven." Impressed with his speed, and unmindful of urban dangers, the Gingerbread Boy yells his trademark "Run run run as fast as you can. You can't catch me! I'm the Gingerbread Man." A chase ensues‘down a fire escape, across a laundry line and onto an uptown subway train. The cookie eludes a rat, construction workers and a policeman, but he's finally outfoxed in the Central Park Zoo. Egielski's Gingerbread Boy has a Gumby-like flexibility, while the human characters sport exaggerated grins, knobby knees and big hands and shoes. Some spreads have no words, just a wide-angle view of the frenzy. The author nicely balances words and pictures, and if the tale of unfortunate hubris ends badly for the Gingerbread Boy, there are more where he came from: tucked inside the front jacket flap is a recipe for gingerbread boy cookies. Ages 3-7. (Oct.)

PreS-Gr 3‘An old nursery favorite with a big-city twist. The Gingerbread Boy gets loose in New York City and is chased by the usual couple and then a hungry alley rat, construction workers, street musicians, and a mounted policeman. The chase leads down a fire escape, through an alley, across a clothesline strung between two high-rise apartment buildings, down into the subway, and through Central Park to the zoo, where the same wily fox, as always, awaits him. Egielski's retelling is straightforward and retains the traditional refrain: "Run run run as fast as you can"‘it sounds just right, making a satisfying modern variation. The illustrations, alternating between single- and double-page spreads, adroitly evoke the city setting while giving a solid three-dimensionality and unique individuality to the Gingerbread Boy and his pursuers. This clever confection makes a fine addition to folklore collections, and it comes complete with a gingerbread cookie recipe.‘Judith Constantinides, East Baton Rouge Parish Main Library, LA

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