Customer Reviews for

500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins

Average Rating 4
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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2001

    Opportunity Arrives Disguised as a Disaster

    The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins is one of my favorite Dr. Seuss books. It is also one of my favorite books about finding opportunities in the midst of problems. Any budding curious mind will find this book encouraging of looking at things differently, so see what potential they hold. A child who is interested in science may find this book to be a useful metaphor throughout life. The book is the first of two that Dr. Seuss wrote about King Derwin of Didd and Bartholomew Cubbins. If you decide you like this tale, I suggest that you also read Bartholomew and the Oobleck. Here's the apparent problem. Bartholomew has taken a basket of cranberries to town to sell, so he can take the money to his parents. While there, the king passes by, and the cry goes out, 'Hats off to the King!' Bartholomew complies, but the king glares at him. There's still a hat on Bartholomew's head, even though he has removed the original one! The captain of the King's Own Guard grabs Bartholomew and takes him the castle, where the king gets more and more angry. And more and more hats keep appearing. Soon, Sir Alaric, Keeper of the King's Records, indicates there are hundreds. The king tries everything he can think of, including calling on Sir Snipps {the royal hat maker}, his wise men (Nadd, father of Nadd, and the father of the father of Nadd), musicians, magicians, his nephew the Grand Duke Wilfred, bowmen, and even the executioner. But the executioner cannot even lop off his head to solve the problem, because the executioner cannot take Bartholomew's hat off. Grand Duke Wilfred offers to kill Bartholomew by throwing him off the top of the castle. But a strange thing happens along the way, and Bartholomew is saved and richly rewarded! Throughout, Bartholomew has worn his honesty and good intentions well, and he has led a charmed life. In the end, 'They could only say it just 'happened to happen' and was not very likely to happen again.' As a caution, you should be aware that Bartholomew is put in situations where people are angry with him and several times is at risk of injury or loss of life. Without proper preparation, this story could frighten your child. I suggest that you wait to introduce this story until your child no longer gets nightmares from stories, and firmly believes you and is comfortable when you say that everyone lives happily ever after. In our family, this meant that our rough and tumble boys were ready for this story before our equally rough and tumble daughter was. Our more sensitive daughter was never introduced to the story. She would hate it. I also suggest that this book be read for the first time early in the day. If you detect any quesiness with Bartholomew's situation, you can stop the book at that point. It is not particularly frightening in the beginning. The book is beautifully produced in black and white, with red added to provide colorful contrast for the hats. Dr. Seuss did a remarkable job here with perspective in his drawings. This method nicely adds depth to the story. He starts by comparing the king's view of the valley with the valley view of the King's castle. The one view makes the king feel grand while the other makes the subjects feel small. This theme of perspective continues with the hats. Bartholomew has certainly removed his hat. That means he has done the right thing. When a new hat appears, that means that he still needs to remove his hat. That appears to the king like a slight, as though no hat had been removed. The king's rather grand ego cannot stand that. So you can think about the problem as a clash in perspectives about showing respect. Is is good or bad to have lots of hats? Usually it is good, and the story allows you to see both the good and the bad sides of this perspective. You might also use this book to introduce visual and relative perspectives more generally to your child. Go look at the end of a corridor and see how rectangular it is. Walk al

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 22, 2013

    I love this book. When I was a little girl, the public library

    I love this book. When I was a little girl, the public library had a summer reading program. Each year had a different theme. When I was in the 2nd grade, The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins was the theme and we were given a large paper hat. For every book you read you received a small hat to paste onto the large hat. I don't remember how many hats I collected, but since we lived only a short distance from the library and we were all voracious readers I earned a lot of hats. I can't remember any of the other summer themes, but Bartholomew Cubbins made a huge impression on me and made me a lifelong reader.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2013

    I read this book tp myself in the early grades, so I can't addre

    I read this book tp myself in the early grades, so I can't address the scary issues to a young child. I was a timid, withdrawn little girl who despised The Cat in the Hat.Then I read The 500 Hats, and reread it and reread it. Such is its power, that 50+years later, awakened by bone pain from chemotherapy, I opened my B & N email, saw this title, and was immediately transported to the hat-strewn climb in the castle tower.
    I'm buying a copy today. In fact, now that I know about the sequel, I'm buying it, too!

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  • Posted January 26, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Review

    The very first tale of Bartholomew Cubbins is a masterpiece in every sense of the word.

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  • Posted January 25, 2012

    Favorite

    Another good Dr. Seuss story that helps children understand what counting is all about. This was my favorite when I was growing up and I am looking forward to reading it with my grandchildren.

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  • Posted October 19, 2011

    Dr. Seuss at His Funniest Best!

    This is a wonderful book for little boys. My grandsons ages 8 to 2 really love to have their young Uncle read to them his favorite book from his early childhood. Dr. Seuss just has that ability to entertain even a modern day tech-no kid!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2001

    vnm

    BEST DR. SEUESS BOOK EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    Posted April 26, 2011

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    Posted October 10, 2010

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    Posted January 3, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 20, 2010

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    Posted March 19, 2014

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