Eloise in Paris

( 3 )

Overview

Bonjour!
Here's the thing of it: Paris has just been discovered by Eloise the little girl from the Plaza...
Here is what Eloise does in Paris: everything.
The effect is rawther extraordinaire. If you come to Paris with Eloise you will always be glad you did.
Eloise in Paris was first published in 1957, the second of the Eloise quartet, and an immediate bestseller. Kay ...

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Overview

Bonjour!
Here's the thing of it: Paris has just been discovered by Eloise the little girl from the Plaza...
Here is what Eloise does in Paris: everything.
The effect is rawther extraordinaire. If you come to Paris with Eloise you will always be glad you did.
Eloise in Paris was first published in 1957, the second of the Eloise quartet, and an immediate bestseller. Kay Thompson and Hilary Knight traveled to Paris to research the book, and the illustrations are dotted with the celebrities they knew there: Richard Avedon takes Eloise's passport photograph; Christian Dior prods her tummy, while his young assistant, Yves Saint Laurent, looks on; Lena Horne sits at an outdoor café.
All four Eloise books by the late Kay Thompson and Hilary Knight — Eloise: The Absolutely Essential Edition, Eloise in Paris, Eloise at Christmastime, and Eloise in Moscow — are now being reissued by Simon & Schuster.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Kathleen Karr
If you are going to Paris France you have to turn into French and absolutely go wild. Obviously this is what Eloise does when her mysterious mother beckons. Richard Avedon must take her passport photos in New York. In Paris Christian Dior and Yves Saint Laurent must design her clothing. And zut, Eloise and Nahnee must linger at the same Parisienne café as Lena Horne. Mama is a no-show as usual, but Paris makes up for the loss in this delightful reprint from the Eloise saga. One can only look forward to the havoc Eloise wreaks upon cold war Moscow and Christmas in the final two books of the series. 1999 orig.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780689827044
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
  • Publication date: 5/1/1999
  • Series: Eloise Series
  • Edition description: Reissue
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 72
  • Sales rank: 111,566
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 7.80 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Kay Thompson (1909-1998) was a singer, dancer, vocal arranger, and coach of many MGM musicals in the 1940s.
The Eloise character grew out of the voice of a precocious six-year-old that Miss Thompson put on to amuse her friends. Collaborating with Hilary Knight on what was an immediate bestseller, Kay Thompson became a literary sensation when Eloise was published in 1955. The book has sold more than 2 million copies to date. Kay Thompson and Hilary Knight created four more Eloise books, Eloise in Paris, Eloise at Christmas, Eloise in Moscow, and Eloise Takes a Bawth.

Hilary Knight, son of artist-writers Clayton Knight and Katharine Sturges, was educated at the Art Students League, where he studied with Reginald Marsh. Besides the Eloise books, Hilary Knight has illustrated more than fifty books for children, six of which he wrote himself.
He lives and works in New York City, not far from The Plaza Hotel.

Biography

Kay Thompson was already a character before she created one, spur of the moment, in the late '40s. The story varies, but goes something like this: Thompson -- a nightclub performer and composer -- showed up late to a rehearsal for a show she was appearing in. Her coach said, "Who do you think you are, coming here five minutes late?" Thompson put on a voice and responded, "I am Eloise, I am six." It was the beginning of a private joke among Thompson's circle, and the beginning of a children's classic.

Urged to write a book starring Eloise, Thompson began the project in earnest while "holed up at the Plaza" with illustrator Hilary Knight. The 1955 book was, as Life called it in 1957, "rampantly popular," with accompanying merchandise including dolls, children's clothing, and a record of a song coauthored and performed by Thompson ("Who is the little girl who knows everybody's business in New York?/I spend an enormous amount of time in the lobby. I have to see what's going on there./Who's on the telephone most of the day?/I have to call room service a lot and tell them to charge it, please and thank you very much.") The premise was irresistible: A precocious six-year-old living in the Plaza Hotel, making mischief, eventually traveling to Paris and Moscow? What's not to like?

Brimming with confidence, self-importance and a general disregard for rules, Eloise had to have been a refreshing anomaly among female characters in the '50s. Thompson, as headstrong and independent as her heroine, has been called a protofeminist. The cadence of Thompson's text was also unusual. Stringing together fragments and rhymes, Thompson's "Eloisiana" gives the six-year-old a grown-up twist, combining catchphrases such as "Charge it, please" and "For Lord's sake" with made-up words ("skibble," "slomp") and Eloise's appropriation of her nanny's accent and thrice-repeated words ("We've got to get out of this tub tub tub").

After an unfortunate 1956 television adaptation of Eloise, Thompson (who appeared as herself in the Playhouse 90 show) banned any further dramatic interpretations. She also felt that the sequels had done the original book a disservice, and allowed them to go out of print, earning a reputation for being capricious and difficult. When Thompson died in 1998, the character had a revival. Thompson's sister authorized rereleases of the Eloise sequels and a special edition of the original book, which was shepherded by illustrator Knight. In 2002, Simon & Schuster released the final Thompson-Knight collaboration, Eloise Takes a Bawth.

Good To Know

Thompson got into a scrape with Donald Trump when he took over ownership of the Plaza hotel and denied her the free rrom she had enjoyed for years. According to the Eloise web site, this transgression resulted in her refusal to allow Eloise's use for any kind of Plaza marketing.

Despite Thompson's preference, another attempt will be made to bring Eloise to life: ABC has two Eloise movies in the works. Eloise is slated for May 2003, and Eloise at Christmastime follows in December 2003.

Thompson was a vocal arranger and composer who worked on several films in the '40s and '50s, including Weekend at the Waldorf, Ziegfeld Follies, and Funny Face, which she also acted in alongside Audrey Hepburn in 1957.

Thompson coached Judy Garland during her Hollywood days; according to a 1996 article in Vanity Fair, she became a close friend of Garland's who often traveled with her and children Liza and Lorna.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Catherine Louise Fink (birth name)
    1. Date of Birth:
      November 9, 1909
    2. Place of Birth:
      St. Louis, Missouri
    1. Date of Death:
      July 2, 1998
    2. Place of Death:
      New York, New York

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 1999

    Eliose, the gal who the world loves!

    Eloise in Paris is really funny. The pictures combined with the funny words ( and funny spelling) makes everyone laugh out loud. Like for instance: 'In Paris you simply cawn't cawn't cawn't get a good cup of tea. They simply do not boil he water here'. Cute, huh?

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 29, 2001

    J'Aime Beaucoup Eloise!

    'Je suis Me ELOISE' Think of this book as a combination French lesson and tour guide to Paris and Versailles, conducted by the inimitable Eloise. You've never had such fun! This book will be appealing to all of those who loved Eloise when they were chronologically young and are still young at heart. The book is a worthy sequel to the original Eloise by patterning the story as much as possible after the first book. Whether you have been to Paris or not, you will be delighted! A cablegram comes from Eloise's mother, and Eloise practically knocks the Plaza to its knees to get it. Then Nanny has to hold it far away to read the message. Eloise's mother wants them to come to Paris to get roses in their cheeks. Eloise telephones everyone at the Plaza to let them know she is going. There are many things to do including shopping, passports, vaccinations, and packing. Pretty soon they are on their way with 37 pieces of luggage. 'Everyone knew we were going, but no one cried.' Eloise, Nanny, Weenie (the pug), and Skipperdee (the turtle) fly by Sabena to Belgium (because it's the only airline that lets turtles fly with the people). From there, they take a helicopter to Paris. They are met there by Koki, the chauffeur of mother's lawyer. He takes them to the Relais Bisson, which is the only place Eloise stays in Paris. It is near the Seine so they can get the salty smell from the air. Mme. and M. Dupuis greet them. . . . But the Realais Bisson is not the Plaza. There is no elevator. The room is small. Eloise knows that she has to get outside to have a good time. And she sure does. But at night, she manages some of her usual fun by visiting all the rooms . . . just to make a few adjustments. Among her many exciting outside events are having a dress designed for her by M. Dior, dinner at Maxim's ('My mother knows Maxim' . . . and yes, she does charge the meal there.), and visits to every possible monument and public place. Along the way, she finds a novel use for French bread that I'll bet you never have tried. The scenes in Paris and Versailles are beautifully drawn by Hilary Knight in the original Eloise style. You'll love them. The book could easily double as a French language lesson. Eloise explains all kinds of french nouns and adjectives that are useful to travelers in a way that makes them easy to remember. 'Oh I absolutely miss the Plaza' and then it's time to go back. This time she has 114 pieces of luggage. 'J'aime beaucoup le Plaza' is her first comment upon returning. I think a hidden blessing of this book is that it will kindle an irresistible urge to visit Paris. If you read the book to your children when they are young, you will probably have an easier time recruiting them as traveling companions for a wonderful family vacation in France. If you already know French, you will also enjoy little jokes that are included in that language. If you do not know French, you'll still enjoy the book very much. After you have finished enjoying this wonderful book, I suggest that you think about how you can take a trip that will cause you to change your usual life style . . . so that you learn new ways of thin

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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