The House Across the Street

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Overview

The boy in the house across the street leads a fantastic life! He can sleep as late as he wants and doesn't have to go to school if it's raining. He's got a swimming pool in his bedroom and a piranha for a pet. So the little boy who watches his every move from the smaller house across the way wants desperately to be his friend. But how is this possible? With imagination, everything is possible.
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2002 Hardcover New NO DUST JACKET-Buy with confidence from "Your neighborhood book store on the World Wide Web". (tm)-Since 1997 delivering quality books to our neighbors, all ... around the world! Read more Show Less

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New York, New York, U.S.A. 2002 Hard Cover First Edition / First Printing Brand New in Brand New jacket Remainder. 8vo-over 7?"-9?" tall. Black remainder mark on the outer paged ... edges. Brand new and unread first edition, very crisp and new! Gift Quality! Dj is nicely preserved in a brand new protective mylar plastic cover! Unpaginated, beautifully illustrated in color! "The boy in the house across the street leads a fantastic life! He can sleep as late as he wants and doesn't have to go to school if it's raining. He's got a swimming pool in his bedroom and a piranha for a pet. So the little boy who watches his every move from the smaller house across the way wants desperately to be his friend. But how is this possible? With imagination, everything is possible." Read more Show Less

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New York, New York, U.S.A. 2002 Hard Cover First Edition / First Printing Brand New in Brand New jacket Remainder. 8vo-over 7?"-9?" tall. Black remainder mark on the outer paged ... edges. Brand new and unread first edition, very crisp and new! Gift Quality! Dj is nicely preserved in a brand new protective mylar plastic cover! Unpaginated, beautifully illustrated in color! "The boy in the house across the street leads a fantastic life! He can sleep as late as he wants and doesn't have to go to school if it's raining. He's got a swimming pool in his bedroom and a piranha for a pet. So the little boy who watches his every move from the smaller house across the way wants desperately to be his friend. But how is this possible? With imagination, everything is possible." Read more Show Less

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Overview

The boy in the house across the street leads a fantastic life! He can sleep as late as he wants and doesn't have to go to school if it's raining. He's got a swimming pool in his bedroom and a piranha for a pet. So the little boy who watches his every move from the smaller house across the way wants desperately to be his friend. But how is this possible? With imagination, everything is possible.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Feiffer (I'm Not Bobby!) continues his winning streak with this picture book about coveting thy neighbor's life. "Across the street from us there's a big, big house/ where it's better than here," sighs a brown-haired preadolescent, seen from behind as he gazes out his window. In a reverse view, from the opposite curb, the speaker sits in the window of his aluminum-sided home, watching the larger house's grinning occupant. The young voyeur names all the things, real and imaginary, that make his neighbor's life so appealing. Images show the envied boy keeping the undivided attention of his mother, sister and baby-sitter, or laughing uproariously with 10 other boys: "He's all of his friends' best friend." In the kind of cumulative extravagance that makes Feiffer's By the Side of the Road so startling, the speaker matter-of-factly lists his neighbor's four purebred dogs and envisions the young master splashing in a backyard pool full of dolphins. Yet Feiffer ensures there is more to the speaker's longing than maudlin self-pity. The disaffected child admires the material trappings, but also desires things that cannot be bought: "Everybody laughs in his house./ Nobody argues. Or if they do/ they stop when he says so." In the end, the boy's idealistic portrait of a blissful home cannot be reduced to a grass-is-always-greener homily. Feiffer leaves the family and class issues unresolved, and ends with a modest fantasy to which youngsters can relate: "Sometimes... I pretend he invites me in." Ages 2-up. (Nov.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-This tale swings in and out of the possible, with the cadences and preposterousness of a story invented on the spot. In the opening scenes, a boy gazing out of the window notes: "Across the street from us there's a big, big house/where it's better than here." In that house lives a slightly older boy whose parents cater to his every whim, such as calling 800 numbers to purchase anything he needs. The narrator admits he's exaggerating after mentioning his neighbor's pet lion; he then describes the shark in the boy's swimming pool-the one in his bedroom. In the end, the boy paces in front of the big house, which he knows is empty, and pretends to be invited in for a sleepover. Feiffer's casual, spare drawings, enhanced by watercolors, are full of the exuberance and energy of his subject. He employs multiple panels on a page to build hyperbole quickly and spreads out to two-page scenes in order to stretch the scale. Children will be willing participants in this larger-than-life fantasy, even as they recognize it for what it is.-Wendy Lukehart, Washington DC Public Library Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
After veering off-key in By the Side of the Road (not reviewed), Feiffer bounces back into perfect pitch with another fretful, all-too-familiar litany. Not only, whines the young narrator, doesn’t the boy across the street have to go to school when it rains, he can eat when and where he wants to, everyone listens when he talks, he wins every game he plays, he has a pool in his bedroom, his house is bigger, he’s got a piranha, a shark, a lion ("Okay, I’m exaggerating"). It just gets better and impossibly better. His life is every child’s dream--or fantasy. Freely drawn watercolors give each of the depressed-looking speaker’s claims visual form, even when after watching the family opposite depart on vacation, he goes over to ring the doorbell and pretend that he’s invited in for a sleepover. Despite the subtlety of the message and the even-more-subtle conclusion, children and former children are likely to wince at how exactly the author has once again captured a common childhood tune. (Picture book. 6-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786809103
  • Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
  • Publication date: 10/30/2002
  • Edition description: 1ST
  • Pages: 32
  • Product dimensions: 10.12 (w) x 11.32 (h) x 0.32 (d)

Meet the Author

Jules  Feiffer
Jules Feiffer is an acclaimed American editorial cartoonist, playwright, novelist, and screenwriter. Born in the Bronx in 1929, he cultivated his craft at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. He ran a Pulitzer prize winning comic strip column in the Village Voice for nearly 42 years. He has also written 26 children's books, several of them award winning. In 2004, he was inducted into the comic book hall of fame.

Jules Feiffer is an acclaimed American editorial cartoonist, playwright, novelist, and screenwriter. Born in the Bronx in 1929, he cultivated his craft at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. He ran a Pulitzer prize winning comic strip column in the Village Voice for nearly 42 years. He has also written 26 children's books, several of them award winning. In 2004, he was inducted into the comic book hall of fame.

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

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2008

    Read before you buy

    I usually read a childrens' book before I buy it -- wish I had with this one. You expect some sort of moral or climax or event or SOMETHING. Very disappointing.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2003

    can you say easy money?

    Childrens book writers...hmmm...easy money in that I bet

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