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The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon

New or Used: 4 copies from $15.88
New or Used: 4 copies from $15.88

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About the Author

Stephen King is the bestselling author of more than thirty books of which the most recent are WIZARD AND GLASS and BAG OF BONES. He lives with his wife, the novelist Tabitha King, in Bangor, Maine.


Gr 4-6-King boils down his 1999 novel of the same name to short-story length for this elaborately engineered pop-up version. The plot and nightmarish atmosphere remain broadly the same; nine-year-old Trisha takes a wrong turn in the Maine woods, and only gets through an increasingly grueling week of being scared, hungry, attacked by insects, and afflicted with hallucinations by listening to the exploits of (now ex-) Red Sox closer Tom Gordon on her Walkman. The text is printed on accordion-folded side flaps, flanking large-scale outdoor scenes enhanced by the occasional pull tab or acetate window; moving parts are few but deliciously scary-particularly one flap that flips open to reveal a face made of swarming wasps, and another that reveals a preternaturally toothy bear. Despite a happy ending, and a design sturdy enough to endure repeated readings, this is definitely not for younger "scary story" seekers.-John Peters, New York Public Library Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

'Vintage King... the quality of the prose is consistently impressive and his trump card is his ability to arouse empathy for the plight of his young heroine' -- Matt Thorne, Independent on Sunday 'Moving, gripping. One of his best...A literary home run' -- Mirror 'Utterly compulsive, bears ample witness to King's mastery of his craft' -- Mail on Sunday 'King writing at his compelling best' -- Express on Sunday

Chilling things pop up in this book by King, who revises his harrowing 1999 novel about a nine-year-old lost in the Maine woods. Due to the format's limited space, the exposition is condensed and rushed: Trisha, the title girl, is on a hike with her recently divorced mom and sullen brother, Pete. While her mother and brother argue, Trisha steps off the trail to relieve herself, and loses her bearings. Beset by bloodthirsty insects (represented on a transparent plastic screen that spins around her face) and menaced by a nameless "special thing that comes for lost kids," Trisha struggles to stay sane and alive. She takes comfort in hallucinations of her hero, Red Sox closing pitcher Tom Gordon, who offers fatherly advice. Like the original, this version follows a baseball structure, from a calm "first inning" to an alarming "top of the ninth" where Trisha faces the supernatural "God of the Lost," a bearlike monster with spiny teeth. King mentions (but the illustrations do not show) things like "the severed head of a deer, terrified eyes wide open" from the original; Dingman creates seven spreads, heavy on the nauseous green and shadowy brown, as Trisha grows increasingly haggard and startling things emerge from trapdoor pages (e.g., a hideous wolfish head or clawed paw appears, then swoops behind a bush). Where the novel built malicious suspense, this production demands that readers lift flaps and peek through transparent windows to heighten the horror. Daring and, ideally, mature King fans will appreciate this scary, perversely funny combo of horror and children's pop-up. Ages 8-up. (Oct.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

While hiking a six-mile stretch of the Appalachian Trail with her mother and brother, nine-year-old Trisha McFarland steps off the path to relieve herself and then attempts a shortcut to catch up. With this unfortunate decision, she becomes lost and alone in the Maine woods for over a week, with limited food and water and what becomes her prize possession, a personal stereo. Trisha uses the radio to follow the play of her beloved Tom Gordon, relief pitcher for the Boston Red Sox--a calming link to the civilized world and one she uses to gather courage and strength for her ordeal. In a near-perfect characterization on King's part, we experience Trisha's fears, hopes, pains, hallucinations, and triumphs through her internal monolog, which is animated in this program by the voice of actress Anne Heche. She flawlessly conveys Trisha's youth and the spectrum of her emotional states. Recommended without reservation.--Kristen L. Smith, Loras Coll. Lib., Dubuque, IA Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

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