CURIOUS GEORGE CECILY G AND 9 MONKEYS CL

Overview

“There is originality and a childlike humor in both the amusing antics and engaging pictures.”—Booklist Cecily G. and the Nine Monkeys was the first book to feature Curious George, as well as being Hans and Margret Rey’s first book for children. In this initial effort, about a lonely giraffe befriended by George and his eight siblings, we see all the hallmarks of Curious George’s signature style: humor, adventure, playfulness, and the episodic storytelling that later characterized classic George set pieces like the flyaway balloons, the rocket

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Overview

“There is originality and a childlike humor in both the amusing antics and engaging pictures.”—Booklist Cecily G. and the Nine Monkeys was the first book to feature Curious George, as well as being Hans and Margret Rey’s first book for children. In this initial effort, about a lonely giraffe befriended by George and his eight siblings, we see all the hallmarks of Curious George’s signature style: humor, adventure, playfulness, and the episodic storytelling that later characterized classic George set pieces like the flyaway balloons, the rocket ship, and the bunny escape.

A lonely giraffe teams up with the nine playful monkeys.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Originally published in French, Cecily G. and the 9 Monkeys was not only Hans and Margret Rey's first book for children; it marked the first appearance of their most enduring creation: Curious George. In this welcome reprint, the diminutive, ever-inquisitive tailless chimp copes with the irrationality of reality.
Children's Literature - Quinby Frank
Fans of the beloved little monkey will want to buy this fresh new edition of the original Curious George story. Before he became famous, George lived with his Mother Pamplemoose and his seven siblings in Africa. They were sad because woodcutters had chopped down all the trees so they had no place to live. When they set off to find a new home, they met a friendly giraffe named Cecily G. who was also sad because she had lost her whole family to a zoo. The little monkeys and the giraffe played together and helped make a new home together. The book includes an informative "Afterword" by Louise Borden telling the story of the origin of the book and the history of the Rey's journeys from Germany to Brazil, back to France, and finally their narrow escape from the Nazis and their arrival in the United States. The "Afterword" is sprinkled with period photographs and tidbits from the various George stories, ending with a picture of the cover of Borden's book, The Journey That Saved Curious George (Houghton Mifflin, 2005). While children will love the gentle story of the friendship between the monkeys and the humor in their clever games, the afterword adds a richness to the story and is presented in a child-friendly format. Readers will want to read more of Rey's adventures in the Borden book. Reviewer: Quinby Frank
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780618800667
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 9/24/2007
  • Series: Curious George Series
  • Format: Library Binding
  • Pages: 48
  • Sales rank: 508,162
  • Age range: 7 - 10 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 10.13 (h) x 0.13 (d)

Meet the Author

H. A. and Margret Rey

The Reys were born in Hamburg, Germany. Hans Augusto Rey (1898-1977) met his wife-to-be, Margret (1906-1996), at a party in her father’s home in Germany; when he first caught a glimpse of her, she was sliding down the banister. In their twenties and thirties they lived in Paris and in Rio de Janeiro, where Hans sold bathtubs in villages along the Amazon River. Eventually Cambridge, Massachusetts, became the Reys’ home and community. Throughout their lives the Reys created many lively books together, including SPOTTY, PRETZEL, and lift-the-flap books such as HOW DO YOU GET THERE? The manuscript of the first Curious George books was one of the few items the Reys carried with them on their bicycles when they escaped from Paris in 1940. Eventually, they made their way to the United States, and CURIOUS GEORGE was published in 1941. Their incorrigible little monkey has become an American icon, selling millions of books and capturing the hearts of readers everywhere. CURIOUS GEORGE has been published in many languages, including French, German, Japanese, Afrikaans, and Norwegian. Additional Curious George books followed, as well as such other favorites as CECILY G. AND THE NINE MONKEYS and FIND THE CONSTELLATIONS.

Louise Borden is the highly regarded author of many books, including Good Luck, Mrs. K!, Sleds on Boston Common, Good-bye, Charles Lindbergh and The Little Ships: The Heroic Rescue at Dunkirk in WW II—all published by Margaret McElderry Books. Across the Blue Pacific is based on the true story of her uncle, Theodore Taylor Walker, who served aboard the USS Albacore (SS-218) during World War II. She lives with her husband, Pete, in Terrace Park, Ohio, and has three grown children. Her website can be found at www.louiseborden.com.

Biography

In their nearly 40-year-long professional collaboration, the husband-and-wife team of Margret and H. A. Rey created one of the most memorable figures in 20th-century children’s literature: Curious George, the little monkey with an insatiable appetite for adventure.

The Reys, like George, had tremendous zest for travel and new experience. Both were born in Germany, H. A. (Hans Augusto) in 1898, and Margret (Margarete Elisabeth Waldstein) in 1906. Although the two became acquainted in their homeland, they fell in love after each moved to Rio de Janeiro, where they married in 1935. Their honeymoon led them to Paris, where Hans published his first book for children, Cecily G. and the Nine Monkeys, introducing Curious George as a peripheral character.

In 1940 the Reys, both of whom were Jewish, fled Paris as the Nazis mounted their invasion of the city, making their way by bicycle to Spain, by train to Lisbon, then to Brazil, New York City, and finally Cambridge, Massachusetts, where they made their home. The few belongings they carried with them from Europe included the manuscript of Curious George, which Houghton Mifflin published in 1941. Together they created six more classic Curious George adventures: Curious George Flies a Kite, Curious George Gets a Medal, Curious George Learns the Alphabet, Curious George Goes to the Hospital, Curious George Rides a Bike, and Curious George Takes a Job.

Like Babar, Bambi, Pippi Longstocking, and countless other children’s book characters, George is, for all purposes, an orphan, one who was separated from his family. (He was kidnapped, in fact, by The Man with the Yellow Hat, who has gained his own degree of fame through the series.) Admonished to stay home and be good, George invariably lets his curiosity get the better of him and winds up in some kind of trouble every time: in jail, on a runaway cow, kidnapped by circus promoters, or in the hospital. In a possible nod to the Reys’s own hair-raising escape from the Nazis, every story involves an antic chase scene. And every story ends in a happy reunion with the man with the yellow hat, who is George’s trainer, keeper, teacher, disciplinarian, and parental figure.

According to their publisher, the Reys were not just a writer/designer team. Although Hans was primarily focused on ideas and illustrations, and Margret on writing, their work often overlapped. The result was pure magic. The Curious George books transcend time and space, driven by a sincere understanding of the forces that propel children: curiosity, resourcefulness, and love of home.

Good To Know

H. A. Rey also independently produced a series of astronomy books (including Find the Constellations), and Margret wrote Pretzel, about a dachshund, and Spotty, about a rabbit, with H. A. Rey’s illustrations. They lived in Cambridge, Massachusetts until their deaths, H. A. Rey’s in 1977 and Margret Rey’s in 1996.

Margret's name does not appear on some of the earlier Curious George collaborations because, she said, "When we first came to America our publisher suggested we use my husband's name because the children's book field was so dominated by women. They thought it would sell better. After a time I thought 'why the devil did I do that?' So since then my name has appeared also."

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    1. Also Known As:
      Hans Augusto Rey and Margarete Elisabeth Waldstein (full names)
    1. Place of Death:
      Cambridge, Massachusetts; Margret died in 1996, H.A. in 1977

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