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By the Great Horn Spoon! Paperback – Apr 30 1988


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (April 30 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316286125
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316286121
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 13 x 1.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 91 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #181,993 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Darlene TOP 50 REVIEWER on Feb. 21 2013
Format: Paperback
I read this book aloud to my children. It won the 1972 George C. Stone Center for Children's Books Recognition of Merit Award.

This is a fantastic adventure story that is set in 1849 during the time of the California Gold Rush. It features an orphaned 12 year-old boy named Jack Flagg, who lives with his aunt, Arabella, in Boston. In order to save the family from financial ruin and force the sale of the family’s estate, Jack sets out to strike a fortune in California. Accompanied by the family’s butler, Praiseworthy, the two set off to purchase their tickets to sail aboard a ship. Unfortunately, their money to pay for their passage is stolen and they must stow-away on the ship. They work off their passage by stoking the boiler with coal. One of the passengers has his map marking the site of gold stolen, and Jack and Praiseworthy devise an ingenious method of ferreting out the thief.

Jack and Praiseworthy encounter one obstacle after another, but they are unswerving in their dedication to complete their mission. They make a great team! I loved seeing the change in their relationship over time from butler/master to more of a father/son dynamic. Praiseworthy really surprised me with his cleverness, and my kids and I laughed on many occasions. It was also really interesting to see what life was like as a gold miner.

If you are looking for a funny adventure story to enjoy with your kids, I highly recommend this book!
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By Nicola Manning-Mansfield HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on Oct. 26 2009
Format: Paperback
Reason for Reading: read aloud to my 9yo to go with our history studies.

Summary: Aunt Arabella is in imminent danger of losing her estate so Jack and the butler, Praiseworthy, leaving a note behind, stowaway on a ship to reach California where they plan to strike it rich with the other forty-niners. Thus coming home in time to save Aunt Arabella's estate. If only things worked out just as we planned them...

Comments: As historical fiction, the book's historical content is contained to life aboard a coal-fueled steamship, both above and below decks, the lifestyle of a gold miner and the drudgery of working on a gold claim with the likelihood of not finding any gold. Otherwise, the tale told here is far too tall to take seriously. Having read a handful of Fleishman's books, including some McBroom, I knew what to expect all along.

A delightful, over-the-top, rip-roaring adventure that both ds and I enjoyed immensely. The character of Praiseworthy is hilarious. Being the perfect 'stiff upper lip' butler he is completely out of his element in the dusty wilds but like the perfect butler he can fix any awkward situation in a jiffy. Praiseworthy slowly loses pieces of his butler's ensemble and with it his lip begins to loosen up as well. Undoubtedly, Praiseworthy is the star of this book. Oddly enough though, with the book being about the rush for gold, the first good half (maybe a bit less) of the book takes place aboard the steamship. We certainly enjoyed the exploits on board, and sailing books are a big hit around here, but we did start to wonder when the gold rush part of the book would ever start. To sum up the story simply put: good, clean fun with plenty of action and loads of laughs.
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By A Customer on June 10 2003
Format: Paperback
Have you ever read a book that will keep you reading for hours? Well if you have, I bet you read this book. This is such and exciting book, you will want to read it over and over.
By the Great Horn Spoon by Sid Fleishman is a book about the adventures of Praiseworthy, the butler, and Jack who are searching for gold to save their Aunt Arabela's fortune. In the beginning Jack and Praiseworthy are stowaways on Captain Swain's ship, the Lady Wilma. They set sail for California and end up in a race with the Sea Raven. They meet up with lots of interesting characters. One of which is Cut-Eye Higgins who is a theif. Once they arrive in San Francisco their adventures continue.
If you like adventure books you will love this one. I highly recommend it to anyone.
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Format: Paperback
By the Great Horn Spoon! is an OK book. If you have read The 13th Floor and hated the way it ended then you will also hate this book. The book ends suddenly with an ending which is not exciting. I suggest reading Bandits
Moon. It is also about the gold rush,but it has a great ending. Sid Fleichman, the author, has a great way with words.
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By Robert B on May 13 2003
Format: Paperback
By the Great Horn Spoon was by far the most enjoyable social science book I have read. The book truly captures the the spirit of what life (Gold Rush life) was like in those days. The author tells this story with great enthusiasm and descriptive deatil; the reader automatically feels as if they are there traveling along with the main characters. I beleive that the use of this book in any classroom with help students gain a better understanding of what "gold rushers" went through to keep their dreams alive.
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By A Customer on Dec 4 2002
Format: Hardcover
Whaho! Bang! Bang! Sorry folks, didn't mean to scare you there. Anyway, welcome to Sacramento 1852 where the gold rush was found. We've all been waiting here to tell you about the new book Sid fleischman wrote about us, By The Great Horn Spoon. I'm sure you're just happy enough to be on land and alive. I don't really like those sea voyages myself but it's the safest way to get to California. So let's walk into town and have us some lunch shall we? Oh, by the way . Have you heard of Bullwhip and Jamoka Jack? Jack is a mere scrawny boy. He's got blonde hair and brown eyes. He got his name by drinkig coffee and plenty of it. And Bullwhip? By gods, I hear he knocked a road-agent fifteen feet up hill! He's got brown hair and a shave of a beard, but he used to be called "Praiseworthy" the butler. They say they're going to see Doc Higgins, the dentist, at Shirtail Camp. They say he's a thief. I personally think he's a nice guy, but who's talking.
This whole story is about a boy, named Jack who figures out about the gold rush and decided that he wants to go to California and search for gold to help his Aunt Arebella who is going to lose her house. Jack and his butler, Praiseworthy, gets aboard as stowaways and crosses the dreadful Cape Horn to California. But they don't know about searching for gold. And you'll have to read the rest to find out how they get rich. The reader will like this book because it has a lot of good information about the gold rush, and it has fun turns and loops. Enjoy this book about the fun and treacherous gold rush.
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