Of Seuss-an reviews this is the third
Likely my last, mostly absurd
But I had to think of life's general direction
And that brought me to this little reflection
The places we go
The places we know
The things that we show
The hearts that all glow
Life is but a journey friend
And friend with friend up till the end
We should be happy and we should be free
You should be you and I'll just be me
And OH, OH, the places we'll go
We'll go hither and we'll go fro
Over the rainbow and under a smile
Making the light year seem less than a mile
My own trek is one through theology
Determined it feels by biology
And compels me upon my wonderful way
And never doubting it for a day
That this is where I'm called to be
This is what I'm charged to see
By some much grander holy light
Which may someday give me greater sight
And until then the faith I'll hold
To try to make the journey bold
So that everyplace will feel like home
For everyplace is someone's home
Be it brown or be it blue
In a castle or a shoe
In the up and out the down
Journeying through every town
And still there will be more places to go
Still more ways in which we can grow
But may we never outgrow the Seuss
For then, dear friends, life's not much use
This is a lesser-known Dr. Seuss book, but still a great story and great learning device. This is especially well suited for children who are going through a transition or change in life, to show them in a cute and memorable way that life is journey in and of itself, and that there are good things to be found when leaving the security and safety of home.
An excellent text for children who may be nervous about going to school, going on a trip, or major life changes, this book is real treasure.
on September 8, 2002
In what has become the quintessential graduation gift, Dr. Suess removes the pollyana-ish spectacles (or rose-colored glasses, if you will) in this wonderful allegory of a great adventure. This is less "Cat in the Hat" and more Joseph Campbell's "Power of Myth" - a sort of "Lord of the Rings" for the crayon-set. Whether you see a school-aged graduate about to journey into the 'real world' or a young Soul about to embark upon a new incarnation, "Oh, the Places You'll Go!" points out the perils and pleasures of such a journey. As magical as it is real, this elegant and silly book will be to graduation gifts as "It's a Wonderful Life" is to Christmas holidays.
on January 8, 2002
When I was a little girl, I thought Dr. Suess was Hop on Pop, Green Eggs and Ham, the Grinch, and Horton Hears a Who. I had no idea that he was so prolific, nor did I know he wrote books with political and ideological messages. So I was bowled over when I discovered this timeless classic, and then wondered why it hadn't been required reading somewhere along the line.
The message - an exciting world of possibilities just waiting for you to make your mark on them, tempered with the warning that obstacles will happen - is great for kids, but probably even more poignant for adults, young and old, who are on their way and may have encountered "the waiting place" or other such snares. Couple an inspiring message with Dr. Suess' colorful rhythm and rhyme, and you have a book that is far more readable, and certainly more memorable than the corporate megalith, Who Moved My Cheese.
If I had my way, this book would be required reading for every high school senior, about to enter the world (and maybe for all those corporate mice stuck in the "waiting place" looking for their cheese).
on June 14, 2004
This book is an absolute 'must read' for everyone. I truly believe that every home should have a copy of this book :-)
I once saw it billed as 'the only self-help' book you'll ever need and this is a very acurate description.
Children - even the tiniest ones - will love this purely because of the wonderful rhyming verse and eye catching illustrations. Older kids and particularly adults will love it because of the wonderful uplifting message that it contains.
Sure, life isn't always easy and we all take wrong turns some times but if you keep going you are bound to end up in the right place.
This book should be available on prescription as an anti-depressant!
on April 28, 2002
Dr. Seuss is considered to be one of America's best "children's" authors. However, I don't think the good doctor ever intended to write solely for children. Some of his books were clearly written for youngsters, but most of them, I believe, were written for everyone.
Nowhere is this more apparent than in OH, THE PLACES YOU'LL GO! The book is often given as a gift to students as they graduate. But the messages the book contains aren't just for the transitional times of our lives. They are things to remember wherever we go, and whatever we do.
Children can profit from reading and listening to the book being read. And sure, the book is filled with the usual zany illustrations and a few never-before-heard-of creatures, situations, and places that kids will enjoy looking at and which may possibly ignite their imagination. But make no mistake, this isn't really a children's book. Kids should be free to be kids and it is only when they are forced to grow up that locations like Lurch, Slump, and The Waiting Place become familiar places. Overall, children cannot understand and comprehend the complexities of life that are described in the book; only adults can do that. Nevertheless, like all great "children's" literature, this is a story for adults, but filled with lessons that if we remember and have ingrained within us when we are young, it will help us succeed 98 and 3/4ths of the time.
on June 4, 2001
I have been reading this book to my son since he was newborn. He has always been captured by the illustrations. As he grew older he began to recognize the animals. One day, he pointed to the main character, who is not named, and I made up an easy name, "That is Bob". To this day he asks for "Bob" at bedtime. This book also got us through a rough time. My son was hiting his friends at daycare and causing distress. We began to talk about being gentle all the time, but one day I noticed "Bob" was petting a big green animal where the book goes, / you'll face up to your problems / whatever they are. I began to say, "Oh! Look! Bob is gentle" and I would pet the animal. After a few nights it caught on and we go through the gentle routine to this day. We also like the waiting place. I used to take a lot of time to ask if he sees the kitty, umbrella, baby, etc. Nowdays, my son tells me where things are. I love this book for so many reasons and I feel the positive outlook toward the future is evenly examined with overcoming obstacles. We always end the book chanting "So get on your way!" together.
on May 1, 2001
"Congratulations! Today is your day. You're off to Great Places! You're off and away!" Oh, the Places You'll Go!, by Dr. Seuss is an inspirational book and characterized by uplifting messages that transcend age and encourage positive attitudes and self esteem to generations of people. Whether you are graduating high school or college, getting a job or retiring, this book will provide timeless messages that evoke and encourage a beneficial attitude throughout the generations. I have read this book many times and each time the memories of events passed are brought to mind, as well as hope for events to come. "You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And you are the guy who'll decide where to go." Seuss reflects positive attitude and self-esteem using his prose to encourage the message he is trying to get across to readers. He uses simple words and rhymes to enforce the idea; a book for the ages. This book is easily readable for anyone from the age of four to eighty four and applicable to the times in between. It can be especially relevant and helpful during transitional phases. Seuss inspires, that you have the ability to take yourself places and make something of yourself. "You'll join the high fliers who soar to high heights." Oh, the Places you'll Go!, shows that you can go to high heights in life as long as you maintain a positive attitude and esteem you can accomplish anything. Seuss' message also includes, "but sometimes you won't." Life isn't always easy, there will be, "bang-ups and hang-ups", along the way. But the point he makes is to not let those get you down and get out of your rut, escape those unhappy times for good times to come. "Oh, the places you'll go! There is fun to be done! There are points to be scored. There are games to be won." Whether you get hung up, still be positive for there is something that will happen which will be good to you. The message Seuss gives his readers about achieving goals and gaining success and happiness are timeless and will be prevalent for many years to come. "and will you succeed? Yes! You will, indeed! (98 and ¾ percent guaranteed.) KID, YOU'LL MOVE MOUNTAINS!" I have read Oh, the Places you'll Go!, many times in the past year. When there are times of transition or struggle in my life the uplifting message Seuss reminds me to get out of my rut, get out of "the waiting place" and move on to the better things to come. I received this book as a high school senior as a present for graduation because it encourages me to think that there are bigger and better things to be achieved so I shouldn't wait for something to happen, but go out and make it happen. Oh, the Places you'll Go!, by Dr. Seuss engulfs the imagination and provides a vision of success and achievement for people of all ages at any time in their live. It is a book that transcends age and time, in which Seuss provides many people the opportunity to read this book and provide them with positive attitudes and achievement. "So... be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O'Shea, you're off to Great Places! Today is your day! Your Mountain is waiting. So... get on your way!
on November 22, 2000
As I embark on yet ANOTHER new chapter of my life, I find I am constantly questioning my every move, encountering new crossroads and rebuilding my somewhat depleting self-belief. Last night my best friend Shannon called me on the phone asking if she could read me a bedtime story. It's been more than 20 years since someone asked me if they could read to me before bed but I instantly reverted to my childhood and out of habit curled up in bed and asked 'what's the book called' before she even opened a page. As the words flowed through her lips, I was dumbfounded at how closely it related to my own life ... it was like Dr. Seuss wrote ME a book. Oh, the Places You'll Go answered EVERY question I have been asking myself for months. All my 'what ifs' 'ands' or 'buts' are no more. All too soon, Shannon came to the end and closed the book, I was speechless and tearful but ironically, I had new zest and energy pumping through my veins ... I wanted to jump to my feet and scream 'I'm going to do it ... I'm going to climb to the top!!! Dr. Seuss makes reference to people in the 'waiting period' where so many of us stay out of fear ... I'm not scared any more!!! No matter how old one is when they pick up this book, it will reflect on their present life and put it into perspective. The next time you find yourself 'questioning', pick up Oh, the Places You'll Go, or better yet have someone read it outloud .. listen to the words, let them seep through your pours and I guarantee ... Dr. Seuss will inspire :)
Researchers constantly find that reading to children is valuable in a variety of ways, not least of which are instilling a love of reading and improved reading skills. With better parent-child bonding from reading, your child will also be more emotionally secure and able to relate better to others. Intellectual performance will expand as well. Spending time together watching television fails as a substitute.
To help other parents apply this advice, as a parent of four I consulted an expert, our youngest child, and asked her to share with me her favorite books that were read to her as a young child. Oh, the Places You'll Go! was one of her picks.
This book describes a future filled with unlimited potential ('you can steer any direction you choose'), success ('you'll pass the whole gang and you'll soon take the lead'), set-backs ('you can get all hung up on a prickle-ly perch'), and overcoming obstacles ('somehow you'll escape all that waiting and staying').
Many will mischaracterize this book. Since it starts with the words, 'Congratulations! Today is your day.', some will see it only in the context of some special event. At one level, it could certainly be a graduation present for a high school or college grad. At another level, it can be given to those who are moving on from one school to another. You can also see it as a gift for any transition, even if from one grade to the next.
But, I think that the more important application of this book is in setting a standard of parental beliefs for your child about one's child's future life. Psychologists in book after book tell us that parents tend not to be supportive enough, and that teenagers and adult children feel that they have never lived up to their parents' standards. This book can play a very important role in conveying what those standards are and making them match up nicely with what will probably occur in your child's life. That's a tremendous resource, and one that all of us should avail outselves of! In particular, the end says, 'And will you succeed? Yes! You will, indeed! (98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.). Notice, that the guarantee comes after faithfully pointing out that the path to success is never straight, that there will be setbacks, and that there will be self-doubt and delays. Hearing that guarantee in the context of the likely difficulties makes one realize that optimism and perserverance are what is being encouraged here. Also, setbacks and delays are merely that ... not failure or failing to meet parental standards.
Psychologists tell us that those who believe they can succeed will put up twice the effort of those who doubt their success.
So after thinking about it, I propose that the day to give this book to someone who has never seen it before is on the darkest day of their life, when all seems bleak and impossible. It may make all of the difference. The gift will be all the more meaningful if you (or someone else) read this book to them when they were younger.
With your children, the right time to introduce this book is as young as possible, so that the belief in their success and the realistic challenges of success will be grounded as soon and as deeply as possible.
So you may give this book as a gift to the same child many times in a lifetime. But don't leave out those who need it who are not your children! They need it even more if their parents did not read Oh, the Places You'll Go! to them as a child!
After you have read this book to your child or given it as a gift to someone else, consider the other ways that you can appropriately boost the self-confidence of that person. Telling a story about your own setbacks and how you overcame them may help. Making yourself more human will also bring you closer together!
on July 2, 2000
I recieved this book from a special teacher as I graduated from high school. I had never read it, so I eagerly opened the cover to see what lied inside. I found it such an excellent and moving book about life that I thought Dr. Seuss wrote it specifically for me. The truth about life is there are always obstacles to overcome, but still "you will move mountains." His lively and comical words are just as indispensable as his wonderfully colored and creative illustrations. A truly magnificent book because it is about something we all have to go through:life. A great gift for people beginning new phases in thier life or a rewarding read just for yourself. Remember "Life is a Great Balancing Act" and you can succeed even if you fall into the Slump for awhile or visit the Waiting Place for quite some time. Soon again you will be off in your balloon and "Oh, the places you'll go!"