Saturday, May 31, 2008

The Whipping Boy by Sid Fleischman

I didn't expect to be but I was immediately drawn in to The Whipping Boy. It has a colorful cast of characters from the beginning that only gets better with time.
We are introduced to the mischievous Prince Brat and an orphan boy named Jemmy who serves as a common boy punished in place of the prince a.k.a the whipping boy. From this beginning, you can immediately sense the conflict between the two boys. For me, this is what the book really shows is the transformation that takes place for these two boys through a series of problems.
It is simplistic and directly written so that a child could read this book by themselves yet an adult can enjoy this book just as easily. If you are a parent who loves to perform voices from characters in books as you read to your children than you would love this book for that reason alone. Not too mention, the sheer laughter you'll experience at times along the way.
This book won the Newbery Medal ward in 1987. I feel it was well-deserved.
I found another review of this book on a different blog that you may also like. There is a link there to some activities that go along with the book. (Spoiler Alert)
Overall, it is an enjoyable read.


Amanda said...

So are you the sort of person who likes to make voices when reading? Oh man I've never been able to let go enough to do that, and I admire everyone who can!!!

Byron said...

I read The Whipping Boy in fifth grade, and loved it! I don't remember much about it now, but I know I could see why it was a medal winner. Whipping boy. What a stupid concept. By hurting a peasant, the prince will feel remorse for his deeds. Hah.

Mandy, I do a decent Bert, Ernie, Elmo, and Cookie Monster. The other day, I was quite pleased with my Mickey and Goofy as well. Donald is beyond me, however. Someday Laura will get a really embarassing recording of me, I'm sure (remind you of anyone?). Just as often, though, I try to mess up the voices on purpose, to get a reaction out of the boys. Girls with low voices, people who talk way fast or way slow... They tell me, "Do it the right way!" It's fun. The public should never hear me, so I'm okay.

Amanda said...

The only voice I can do is Shaggy, and really I could only do that one after watching all the old Scooby Doo movies when we lived with my mom 2 years ago. i never let anyone but the boys hear it though. I can talk about anything, but can't let myself go enough to do voices in front of people. Ironic.

I never read The Whipping Boy. There was a play of some sort in elementary school where each fifth grader came out as a representation of a book. Someone named Portia did The Whipping Boy, and I thought her name was ugly, and therefore decided it must be a stupid book. I was 7 or 8. And I was a stupid child. :)

Unknown said...

Yeah, I hear Amanda does an excellent Shaggy. Not that I'd know *bitterness*.

Julie said...

Welcome to an oldie but a goodie to all those from R.R. today. I'm happy that you've come to read this review! :D

Sarah said...

I hadn't heard of this on before but it sounds like a fun book to read with children. I'll have to try & remember this one for the future :o)

Chrissie said...

I'll have to bear this one in mind for when my boys are a bit older! Sounds fun - although I'm not too good at doing different voices! I might have to get some practice in between now and then :)