The End  
The End
by David LaRochelle
illustrated by Richard Egielski
Arthur A. Levine Books/Scholastic, 2007
Ages 4 to 8
ISBN 978-0-439-64011-4

“And they all lived happily every after.”

The End receives a warm welcome at the Celebration of Minnesota Children's Authors at the Anderson Center in Red Wing.

Usually that’s how a story concludes, but not this one! This topsy-turvy tale begins with The End and winds backwards: past a soggy knight, a frightened dragon, 100 bunny rabbits, an enormous runaway tomato, and a hungry giant who wants lemon cheesecake for dessert ... until finally arriving at Once upon a time.

Forwards or backwards, this is a very unusual fairy tale indeed!

Teachers and librarians: Don't forget to check out the teaching guide, extension activities, and backwards party ideas available here for The End.

Awards and Recognition

SCBWI Golden Kite Honor for Picture Book Text, 2007
Bill Martin, Jr., Picture Book Award nominee, 2008-2009
Maryland Black-Eyed Susan Book Award nominee, 2009-2010
Wyoming Buckaroo Book Award nominee, 2008-2009
Washington's Children's Choice Award nominee, 2009
Maine's Chickadee Award nominee, 2009
Tennessee Volunteer State Book Award nominee, 2009-2010
Utah Beehive Award nominee, 2010

Book Reviews

“The reversed narrative, hilarious turn-of-the-page plot twists and bright, comical, precisely drawn art add up to an uncommonly clever outing that invites reading—in either direction.”

“LaRochelle’s text is all the funnier for its spare, deadpan statements of effect and cause, each taking maximum advantage of page turns, and Egielski’s artwork exaggerates the zaniness of the reversed narrative by placing it within a mock-stately context ... As fun as it is handsome, this offering will be a hit at storytimes.”

"LaRochelle keeps the plot simple, the better to trace the inverted order, and leaves the excitement (the dragon's fiery snort, the giant's tantrum, etc.) to the intertwining images. Egielski illustrates in buoyant hues.... and gives timely visual hints to past and future moments in this nicely realized puzzle."

"Though the book can be appreciated in one reading, and would work well when shared aloud, multiple perusals are necessary to spot all of the details. When youngsters reach the beginning of The End, they will want to start all over again."

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