Solomon the Rusty Nail

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Overview

Here, in the great tradition of Sylvester and the Magic Pebble and Caleb and Kate, is another

tale of magical transformation from William Steig. Its hero, young Solomon, is an ordinary

rabbit—well, ordinary in every respect but one. Whenever he scratches his nose and wiggles

his toes at exactly the same time, he turns into a rusty nail. To ...

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Overview

Here, in the great tradition of Sylvester and the Magic Pebble and Caleb and Kate, is another

tale of magical transformation from William Steig. Its hero, young Solomon, is an ordinary

rabbit—well, ordinary in every respect but one. Whenever he scratches his nose and wiggles

his toes at exactly the same time, he turns into a rusty nail. To turn back into a rabbit, all he has

to do is thing: "I'm no nail, I'm a rabbit!"

This unusual talent enables Solomon to play some gratifying practical jokes, but it also leads to serious trouble when he's waylaid by a one-eyed cat who plans to turn him into Hasenpfeffer. Solomon promptly becomes a rusty nail and steadfastly refuses to change back, even after Ambrose, the cat, and his wife, Clorinda, lock him up in a cage in their guest room. Sooner or later, they figure, they'll be dining no bunny stew. How can Solomon possibly find a way out of this dilemma?

A charming story of a young rabbit, Solomon, who can change magically into a rusty nail and back again. This is great fun--until a one-eyed cat captures him in the form of a rusty nail, content to wait until he becomes a rabbit again. Full-color illustrations.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Steig has created a story and pictures as richly inventive as his applauded Abel's Island, Yellow and Pink, The Amazing Bone and all his other picture books. Beautifully written and illustrated by paintings reflecting the sunny colors of spring, the adventures of Solomon the rabbit lad start when he discovers he can metamorphose into a rusty nail. It's a lark to fool his family by working the magic that makes him disappear, then saying the phrase that brings him back. But the fun stops when the cat Ambrose snatches Solomon and totes him home for Clorinda to cook. The rabbit turns into the nail, but Ambrose, who's on to the trick, tells his wife they'll wait until the captive is a plump bunny again, ready for the stewpot. When Solomon remains inertly iron too long, enraged Ambrose nails him to the house. What happens thereafter is exciting, comic, touching and altogether wonderful: a classic by a peerless artist. (All ages)
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2 Solomon is an ordinary rabbit with one extraordinary exception: whenever he scratches his nose and wiggles his toes at exactly the same time, he turns into a rusty nail. Incarcerated by a one-eyed cat, he is soon nailed to the wall in a fit of feline pique. As with other Steig heroes and heroines, a combination of pluck and luck lead him back to the bosom of his worried family. Steig's watercolors are, as always, uniquely expressive, ranging from wryly witty to luminescently lovely. However, there is more than a hint of d ej a vu to the story line: echoes of Sylvester and the Magic Pebble (Windmill, 1969) mix with overtones of The Amazing Bone (Farrar, 1976) conjuring up earlierand betterfantasies. In the process of pasting together elements from other fantasies, Steig has created a world leaking at its logical seams. If Solomon can ``still hear though he had no ears, and see though he had no eyes,'' why can he not also talk, though he has no mouth, and thus save himself at once? Furthermore, Solomon discovers his magical power while sitting on a green, flower-sprinkled lawn, then proceeds to mystify his friends, ``starting the next day,'' as they all frolic with sleds on a snow-covered hillside. Now really! Quibbles, perhaps, but ones that glare like errors in this less-than-masterful performance by a master storyteller. Kristi Thomas Beavin, Arlington County Library, Va.
From the Publisher
"Steig combines a tale of uncanny transformation with his distinctively animated illustrations...Children will love this bizarre tale with its humorous drawings and lively sense of fun." —Pointer, Kirkus Reviews

"Beautifully written and illustrated by paintings reflecting the sunny colors of spring...A classic by a peerless artist."—Publishers Weekly

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780374371319
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
  • Publication date: 11/1/1985
  • Series: Sunburst Series
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.81 (w) x 11.08 (h) x 0.39 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 10, 2013

    Reading this book to my son reminded me of my own magical childh

    Reading this book to my son reminded me of my own magical childhood. It sparks imagination.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    !!!

    My second favorite William Steig book.

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

    Posted November 9, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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