Bark, George

( 12 )

Overview

"Bark, George," says George's mother, and George goes: "Meow," which definitely isn't right, because George is a dog.

And so is his mother, who repeats, "Bark, George." And George goes, "Quack, quack."

What's going on with George? Find out in this hilarious new picture book from Jules Feiffer.

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Overview

"Bark, George," says George's mother, and George goes: "Meow," which definitely isn't right, because George is a dog.

And so is his mother, who repeats, "Bark, George." And George goes, "Quack, quack."

What's going on with George? Find out in this hilarious new picture book from Jules Feiffer.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Celebrated storyteller Jules Feiffer is a man of many talents: This Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist, playwright, screenwriter, and novelist is also an acclaimed children's book author! Bark, George is a delightfully silly picture book about a dog who can't seem to bark right; for some unknown reason, he makes all sorts of other animal sounds. Bark, George is written for very young children, but this fantastic farce is sure to amuse kids -- and adults! -- of all ages.
Sesame Street Parents
There's a laugh on every page as Jules Feiffer tells an old story in a fresh way, with just a few words and big, colorful, cartoonlike pictures. Preschoolers will act out the animal sounds, and they'll love the way the small dog turns a logical, familiar world upside down.
Kathleen Odean
When George, a lanky puppy, is told by his mother to bark, he answers with a "meow" and then a series of other animal noises. When she takes him to a human vet, the man pulls animal after animal out of George's throat. The problem seems to be solved, until the last page when George opens his mouth and "Hello" comes out. On clean, wide pages, the cartoon like illustrations feature funny facial expressions and priceless body language. A clever, catchy story from a master cartoonist.
Horn Book
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In just a few pen strokes and just a few words, Feiffer (I Lost My Bear) outlines the playful scenario of a puppy who cannot say "arf." The images are striking, with no background details or props but the unobtrusive text. In the initial spreads, a big dog and a little one face each other from opposite sides of the book: "George's mother said: `Bark, George.' George went: `Meow.' " As George proceeds to quack, oink and moo, his dismayed mother grimaces and puts her paw on her head in the classic gimme-a-break gesture. She takes her afflicted son to a veterinarian, who snaps on a rubber glove and decisively repeats the title command. This time, when the pup meows, "The vet reached deep down inside of George... And pulled out a cat." Feiffer reverses the old-lady-who-swallowed-a-fly plot and boosts the giddiness with every barnyard animal removed from tiny George. The pen-and-ink close-ups of the dogs and vet are studies in minimalism and eloquence, and the characters' body language registers intense effort and amazement. Rather than being black-on-white, the illustrations get a boost from cool pastel hues. This pairing of an ageless joke with a crisp contemporary look will initiate many an animated game of animal sounds. Ages 2-6. (June) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-A lovable pup tries to bark, but all that comes out are other animals' sounds, until a cathartic trip to the vet unleashes the problem. A pack of fun, with droll illustrations and deadpan text. (Sept.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-Based on Jules Feiffer's hilarious book (HarperCollins, 1999), this video tells the tale of a puppy, George, who has a speech problem. His mother is trying to teach him to bark, but instead he makes the sounds of different animals-a cat, a duck, a pig, a cow. This is very disconcerting for his mother (and a real knee-slapper for young viewers). The vet, however, solves the problem. He puts on a latex glove, reaches deep inside George's mouth, and pulls out all the offending animals! The problem is solved or is it? This delightfully absurd ALA Notable book has always been a winner with the very young. In this adaptation, Feiffer's bright and funny illustrations have been animated, and original background music has been added. John Lithgow supplies the narration, providing voices for George's mother and the vet, as well as George's animal sounds. Put it all together and you have a short video that will delight young audiences, and fit in nicely with animal or pet units.-Teresa Bateman, Brigadoon Elementary School, Federal Way, WA Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062051868
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 6/28/1999
  • Series: Michael Di Capua Books Series
  • Format: Library Binding
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 11.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.37 (d)

Meet the Author

Jules  Feiffer
Jules Feiffer has won a number of prizes for his cartoons, plays, and screenplays, including the Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartooning. His books for children include The Man in the Ceiling, A Barrel of Laughs, A Vale of Tears, I Lost My Bear, Bark, George, and Meanwhile... He lives in New York City.

In His Own Words...

"I have been writing and drawing comic strips all illy life, first as a six-year-old, when I'd try to draw like my heroes: Alex Raymond, who did Flash Gordon, E. C. Segar, who did Popeye, Milton Caniff, who did Terry and the Pirates. The newspaper strip back in the I 1940s was a glorious thing to behold. Sunday pages were full-sized and Colored broadsheets that created a universe that could swallow a boy whole.

"I was desperate to be a cartoonist. One of my heroes was Will Eisner, who did a weekly comic book supplement to the Sunday comics. One day I walked into his office and showed him my samples. He said they were lousy, but lie hired me anyway. And I began my apprenticeship.

"Later I was drafted Out of Eisner's office into tile Korean War. Militarism, regimentation, and mindless authority combined to squeeze the boy cartoonist Out Of me and bring out the rebel. There was no format at the time to fit [he work I raged and screamed to do, so I had to invent one. Cartoon satire that commented on the Lin military the Bomb, the Cold War, the hypocrisy of grownLIPS, the mating habits of urban Young men and women, these were my subjects. After four years of trying to break into print and getting nowhere, the Village Voice, the first alternative newspaper, offered to publish me. Only one catch: They couldn't Pay me. What (lid I care?

"My weekly satirical strip, Sick Sick Sick, later renamed Feiffer started appearing in late 1956. Two years later, Sick Sick Sick came out in book form and became a bestseller. The following years saw a string of cartoon collections, syndication, stage and screen adaptations of the cartoon. One, Munro, won an Academy Award.

"This was heady stuff, taking me miles beyond my boyhood dreams. The only thing that got in the way of my enjoying it was the real world. The Cuban missile crisis, the assassination of President Kennedy, the Vietnam War, the Civil Rights revolution. The country was coining unglued and my weekly cartoons didn't seem to be an adequate way of handling it. So I started writing plays: Little Murders, The White House Murder Case, Carnal Knowledge, Grownups. All the themes of my comic strips expanded theatrically and later, cinematically to give me the time and space I needed to explain the times to myself and to my audience.

"I grew older. I had a family, and late in life, a very young family. I started thinking, as old guys will, about what I wanted these children to read, to learn. I read them E.B. White and Beverly Cleary and Roald Dahl, and, one day, I thought, I ley, I can do this."

"Writing for young readers connects me profess sionally to) a part of myself that I didn't know how to let out until I was sixty: that kid who lived a life of innocence, mixed with confusion and consternation, disappointment and dopey humor. And who drew comic strips and needed friends--and found them--in cartoons and children's books that told him what the grown-ups in his life had left out. That's what reading (lid for me when I was a kid. Now, I try to return the favor."

Jules Feiffer has won a number of prizes for his cartoons, plays, and screenplays, including the Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartooning. His books for children include The Man in the Ceiling, A Barrel of Laughs, A Vale of Tears, I Lost My Bear, Bark, George, and Meanwhile... He lives in New York City.

In His Own Words...

"I have been writing and drawing comic strips all illy life, first as a six-year-old, when I'd try to draw like my heroes: Alex Raymond, who did Flash Gordon, E. C. Segar, who did Popeye, Milton Caniff, who did Terry and the Pirates. The newspaper strip back in the I 1940s was a glorious thing to behold. Sunday pages were full-sized and Colored broadsheets that created a universe that could swallow a boy whole.

"I was desperate to be a cartoonist. One of my heroes was Will Eisner, who did a weekly comic book supplement to the Sunday comics. One day I walked into his office and showed him my samples. He said they were lousy, but lie hired me anyway. And I began my apprenticeship.

"Later I was drafted Out of Eisner's office into tile Korean War. Militarism, regimentation, and mindless authority combined to squeeze the boy cartoonist Out Of me and bring out the rebel. There was no format at the time to fit [he work I raged and screamed to do, so I had to invent one. Cartoon satire that commented on the Lin military the Bomb, the Cold War, the hypocrisy of grownLIPS, the mating habits of urban Young men and women, these were my subjects. After four years of trying to break into print and getting nowhere, the Village Voice, the first alternative newspaper, offered to publish me. Only one catch: They couldn't Pay me. What (lid I care?

"My weekly satirical strip, Sick Sick Sick, later renamed Feiffer started appearing in late 1956. Two years later, Sick Sick Sick came out in book form and became a bestseller. The following years saw a string of cartoon collections, syndication, stage and screen adaptations of the cartoon. One, Munro, won an Academy Award.

"This was heady stuff, taking me miles beyond my boyhood dreams. The only thing that got in the way of my enjoying it was the real world. The Cuban missile crisis, the assassination of President Kennedy, the Vietnam War, the Civil Rights revolution. The country was coining unglued and my weekly cartoons didn't seem to be an adequate way of handling it. So I started writing plays: Little Murders, The White House Murder Case, Carnal Knowledge, Grownups. All the themes of my comic strips expanded theatrically and later, cinematically to give me the time and space I needed to explain the times to myself and to my audience.

"I grew older. I had a family, and late in life, a very young family. I started thinking, as old guys will, about what I wanted these children to read, to learn. I read them E.B. White and Beverly Cleary and Roald Dahl, and, one day, I thought, I ley, I can do this."

"Writing for young readers connects me profess sionally to) a part of myself that I didn't know how to let out until I was sixty: that kid who lived a life of innocence, mixed with confusion and consternation, disappointment and dopey humor. And who drew comic strips and needed friends--and found them--in cartoons and children's books that told him what the grown-ups in his life had left out. That's what reading (lid for me when I was a kid. Now, I try to return the favor."

Biography

Born the Bronx in 1929, Jules Feiffer got his first taste of the artistic accolades that were to come his way in the form of a gold medal awarded to him at the age of five in a school art contest. His love of art persisted throughout his childhood -- and after forging a career as a Pulitzer Prize-winning political cartoonist, he would find success writing and illustrating books for children himself.

After high school, Feiffer’s talent for drawing led him to the Art Students League of New York and later earned him admittance to Brooklyn’s renowned Pratt Institute. His first paying job as a cartoonist was under the tutelage of idol Will Eisner, the famous father of the classic 1940s cartoon, “The Spirit.” Feiffer’s apprenticeship and fledgling comic strip career were interrupted, however, when he was drafted into the Army. There, he spent what little free time he was allowed doodling sketches with a decidedly anti-military bent, and his famous “Munro” character -- a four-year-old boy drafted into the Army by mistake -- was born.

After serving his time in the Army, Feiffer developed the comic strip Sick, Sick, Sick: A Guide to Non-confident Munro, which was later renamed, simply, Feiffer. The strip appeared regularly in publications from The Village Voice to The New York Times from 1956 to 1997, and Feiffer’s trademark style -- stark, scribbled figures emoting against a white background -- was promptly adopted by political cartoonists around the world. In April of 1958, an animated rendition of Sick, Sick, Sick won an Academy Award in the Short-Subject Cartoon category, and in 1996, Feiffer was awarded the Pulitzer for his biting editorial cartoons.

Feiffer's knack for capturing the turmoil of his times carried over from cartoons into other media. His play Little Murders -- a wry exploration of violence in urban life -- garnered several accolades when it was presented in 1967, among them the London Theatre Critics, Outer Circle Critics and Obie Awards. As New York Times theater reviewer Clive Barnes commented, "[Feiffer] muses on urban man, the cesspool of urban man's mind, the beauty of his neurosis, and the inevitability of his wilting disappointment." Feiffer's other plays include White House Murder Case (1970) and Anthony Rose (1990). In addition, Feiffer wrote the screenplays for several feature films, most notably Carnal Knowledge (1971) and Popeye (1980).

Feiffer’s motivation to write his first children’s book, according to legend, came from good old-fashioned spite. The story goes that a longtime friend of Feiffer's (who he won’t name) came up with a concept for a children's book based on their shared love of the movies. Feiffer agreed to hand over the illustrating duties to his friend and give writing it a shot, and toughed out every line. When he called the friend to report on his progress, Feiffer found out -- to his fury -- that his friend had decided to write it himself. Although his friend later apologized, Feiffer decided that in the end, they should each do their own books. He changed the subject of his work in progress from the movies to comic books, and The Man in the Ceiling -- a semi-autobiographical tale bout a boy and his love for drawing -- was born.

Selected by Publishers Weekly as one of the best children's books of 1993, the book was a runaway hit with kids and parents. Feiffer continued writing for his new, less jaded audience, offering up A Barrel of Laughs, A Vale of Tears (1998), I Lost My Bear (1998), Meanwhile… (1999), Bark, George (1999), I’m Not Bobby!, (2000) By the Side of the Road (2001), and The House Across the Street (2002). Far from the stark stencils that are his political cartoons, his children’s illustrations wriggle with life, their curvier lines in no way softening the lessons within.

Good To Know

Feiffer is the only cartoonist to have a comic strip published by The New York Times.

A fan of comic strips from an early age, Feiffer started to draw at the age of six. His favorites were Flash Gordon, Popeye, and Terry and the Pirates.

Feiffer didn't want Jack Nicholson cast for the lead in the 1971 film Carnal Knowledge, for which he wrote the screenplay. Director Mike Nichols fought Feiffer on the casting and finally convinced him to approve the up-and-coming actor.

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    1. Hometown:
      New York, New York
    1. Date of Birth:
      January 26, 1929
    2. Place of Birth:
      New York, New York
    1. Education:
      The Pratt Institute, 1951

Interviews & Essays

An Interview with Jules Feiffer

Barnes & Noble.com: After achieving success as a political cartoonist, playwright, screenwriter, and novelist, what compelled you to write your first children's book?

Jules Feiffer: I have three generations of kids (well, at that time, only two)...but I think having another child late in life -- I was over 50 -- makes you pay attention in a way you don't when you're younger. My kids and I did a lot of reading together and there were a lot of books I liked, as well as a lot of books I didn't think so much of, and somewhere along the line I began to think, Well I can do this! -- and I did.

B&N.com: How do you come up with stories that you think will appeal to kids?

JF: I have a number of different careers, and in all of them, I never think of anything specific like that at the start. I first think of what will be entertaining and interesting to me as a reader, or as a member of an audience, and then I think in terms of some general idea of age group, and then I splash around in my head for ideas. In fact, my new book, Bark, George, happened because when my youngest daughter -- she's almost five now -- was about a year and a half or two years old, I was telling her a bedtime story, and basically the text of the book is that bedtime story with very few changes.

B&N.com: I was going to ask you if you've always been a storyteller, even before you were a writer. I guess so!

JF: Well I am, but this is the first time I've told a bedtime story that I could get published. I've been hoping for lightning to strike ever since! I must have told my daughter 500 stories since then, and not one of them has had the same results.

B&N.com: When you were a child, did you always know you'd be an artist of some sort?

JF: Well, I wanted to be a cartoonist from the time I was five.

B&N.com:In The Man in the Ceiling, Jimmy's parents weren't very supportive of his cartooning talents. Is that something you're familiar with?

JF: Actually, my mother, who was a fashion designer -- as the mother is in The Man in the Ceiling -- was very supportive of me. The parents in the book weren't really my parents. There were similarities, of course, but they weren't the same. However, the sisters are very much my sisters. And Jimmy was very much based on me. But nothing in the book ever really happened.

B&N.com: Do you have any advice to give to kids who say they want to be authors?

JF: They should read a lot and write a lot -- and have fun doing it! But they should be readers. And they should just keep writing, and if it doesn't work out, keep doing it again and again and again -- for the fun of it and for learning how to do it.

B&N.com: Bark, George seems to be the simplest of any of the children's books you've done. Was this intentional?

JF: Well, they do seem to get simpler. The first two (The Man in the Ceiling and A Barrel of Laughs, a Vale of Tears) were for middle-grade readers and were far more complicated. And then, for some reason or another that I don't understand, I started on this group of younger books. The next book I have coming out is somewhere in between -- somewhere to the left of Bark, George and to the right of The Man in the Ceiling. I can't talk about it right now, but it's written, and it's been a lot of fun.

B&N.com: Then you intend to keep on writing children's books?

JF:Oh, yes -- it's more fun than anything else I do now. I wrote plays for a number of years, and when I gave that up I needed some new passion...or two...to obsess over, and this has been terrific. And the feedback has been wonderful -- which is what one can always hope for. The response of kids, the response of libraries and bookstores, has just been phenomenal. I'm delighted!

B&N.com: Well, I'm delighted that you took the time to speak with me. Thanks so much! And thanks for giving your young readers Bark, George -- and for continuing to create all kinds of great kids' books! (Jamie Levine)

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 12 )
Rating Distribution

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(8)

4 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 12 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2006

    What a hoot!

    The illustrations are large and priceless. I have read this book to countless numbers of young children in library, home, and classrooms. Never once has it failed to produce laughter and the cry 'read it again'!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 17, 2002

    Such a cute book

    I read this book for the first time this past summer when I read it to a group of preschoolers during story-time at the library. The kids had a blast with the book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 6, 2013

    Our granddaughter loves it.

    I haven't had an opportunity to see it for myself. I ordered it for our 18 month old granddaughter. Her parents have told me she loves it and that she loves to bark while they read her the book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 22, 2012

    great book!

    My daughter loves this book - kept taking out of the library so much I had to purchase it!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2011

    Very Cute Book

    I bought my own copy of this book after my granddaughter, age 6, checked it out at the library for the fourth time! She just loves the dogs antics in this book. It is a wonderful read. Add your own animal sounds for a laughing good time.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 26, 2010

    My Childhood Book....

    My teacher read this to me in kindergarten and I've not been able to forget this book! I love this books sooo much! It's a great book for little kids and a great memory book for those who remember it(:

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 16, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Feiffer for kids

    As one who remembers Jules Feiffer's editorial cartoons from the newspaper & magazines, I was pleasantly surprised by his books for children. This was one of many selections requested by my church's children's library. Kind of cute for an adult; I suppose a child would find it much funnier.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2009

    Never received...was returned w/out notice

    Never got delivered for birthday gift...was returned w/out notice.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 11, 2009

    Wonderful book for young children

    My two-year old grandson absolutely loves this book. It is so simple that after only a couple readings, he can fill in the animal sounds. very humorous.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 7, 1999

    Wanna Laugh?

    Children love to laugh. This book will make them do just that and warm their hearts along the way.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 4, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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