Read The Story of Doctor Dolittle by Hugh Lofting Free Online
Book Title: The Story of Doctor Dolittle|
The author of the book: Hugh Lofting
Date of issue: September 26th 1997
ISBN 13: 9780688140014
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 381 KB
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Reader ratings: 7.3
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Foreword by Patricia C. McKissack and Fredrick L. McKissack. Afterword by Peter Glassman.When a swallow arrives in Puddleby-on-the-Marsh with the news that the monkeys of Africa are ill and only the doctor who talks with animals can save them, Doctor Dolittle and such good friends as Jip, his loyal dog, and Dab-Dab, his housekeeper duck, face their greatest challenge. Together they must sail to Africa, battle a band of cutthroat pirates, flee across a gorge on a bridge made of acrobatic apes, and convince the king of the beasts that even he must help an animal in need. With nearly fifty full-page pictures from Michael Hague and the McKissacks artful reworking of the dilemma faced by Prince Bumpo, this treasured story is now available in a deluxe edition that all families will want to explore again and again.
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Read information about the authorHugh Lofting was a British author, trained as a civil engineer, who created the character of Doctor Dolittle — one of the classics of children's literature.
Lofting was born in Maidenhead, England, to English and Irish parents. His early education was at Mount St Mary's College in Sheffield, after which he went to the United States, completing a degree in civil engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
He traveled widely as a civil engineer before enlisting in the Irish Guards to serve in World War I. Not wishing to write to his children of the brutality of the war, he wrote imaginative letters that were the foundation of the successful Doctor Dolittle novels for children. Seriously wounded in the war, he moved with his family to Connecticut in the United States. Lofting was married three times and had three children, one of whom, his son Christopher, is the executor of his literary estate.
"For years it was a constant source of shock to me to find my writings amongst 'juveniles,'" Lofting reported. "It does not bother me any more now, but I still feel there should be a category of 'seniles' to offset the epithet."
Hugh Lofting's doctor from Puddleby-on-the-Marsh who could speak to animals first saw light in the author's illustrated letters to children, written from the trenches during World War I when actual news, he later said, was either too horrible or too dull. The stories are set in early Victorian England, (in and around the 1840s, according to a date given in The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle). The Story of Doctor Dolittle: Being the History of His Peculiar Life at Home and Astonishing Adventures in Foreign Parts Never Before Printed (1920) began the series and won the Lewis Carroll Shelf Award in 1958.The sequel, The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle (1922), won Lofting the prestigious Newbery Medal. Eight more books followed, and after Lofting's death two more volumes, composed of short unpublished pieces, appeared. The series has been adapted for film and television many times, for stage twice, and for radio.
Other Works for Children
The Story of Mrs Tubbs (1923) and Tommy, Tilly, and Mrs. Tubbs (1936) are picture books aimed at a younger audience than the Doctor Dolittle books. They concern the titular old woman, her pets (with whom she can speak) and the animals who help her out of trouble.
Porridge Poetry (1924) is the only non-Dolittle work by Lofting still in print. It is a lighthearted, colorfully illustrated book of poems for children.
Noisy Nora (1929) is a cautionary tale about a girl who is a noisy eater. The book is printed as if hand-written, and the many illustrations often merge with the text.
The Twilight of Magic (1930) is aimed at older readers. It is set in an age when magic is dying and science is beginning. This work is the only one of Lofting's books to be illustrated by another person (Lois Lenski).
Victory for the Slain
Victory for the Slain (1942) is Lofting's only work for adults, a single long poem in seven parts about the futility of war; the refrain "In war the only victors are the slain" permeates the poem. It was published only in the United Kingdom.
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