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In 1999, 53 percent of children ages 3 to 5 were read to daily by a family member, the same as in 1993 after increasin... More


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THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH

Author: Norton Juster

Illustrator: Jules Feiffer

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Publisher: Dell Yearling,

Material: paperback

Summary: Milo, who is bored with his life, finds a mysterious tollbooth in his room. He follows the instructions on the note and passes through the tollbooth into a ludicrous land. Milo encounters the Humbug, the Spelling Bee, and Tock. Milo then embarks on a quest to rescue Rhyme and Reason and save the land. This quest might just cost him his life. This is a classic illustrated chapter book for middle-grade readers.

Type of Reading: bedtime story, family reading, anytime reading, independent reading, read aloud book

Recommended Age: read together: 8 to 12; read yourself: 10 and up

Interest Level: 9 to 12

Reading Level: 6.7

Age of Child: Group of seven sixth graders at John Jay Middle School (Katonah, NY)

Young Reader Reaction: We picked this book from among 8 other titles for a book club because it sounded funny and intriguing. We liked the book because the author's words were creative and funny. Our perception of what would happen changed because the beginning of the book seemed like realistic fiction, but then it changed into fantasy when he passed through the tollbooth.

Adult Reader Reaction: N/A for this review

Pros: We enjoyed traveling with Milo through the land beyond the tollbooth. The ending satisfies the reader.

Cons: We liked the ending, but at the very end, it kind of "cut off."

Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is the kind of book you would only read once, so we would not want to keep it.

If You Liked This Book, Try: Roald Dahl books, Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll 3 DOORS: CHOOSE WISELY   PENELOPE AND PRISCILLA AND THE CITY OF THE BANISHED   ISABELLA ... AND THE ROOM OF LOST BROOMS

Educational Themes: This is a fantasy story, but you will learn that there is more to life than meets the eye.

Literary Categories: Fiction - fantasy, adventure, middle grade

Date(s) Reviewed: March 2008

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