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Hardcover The Seven Lady Godivas: The True Facts Concerning History's Barest Family Book

ISBN: 0394562690

ISBN13: 9780394562698

The Seven Lady Godivas: The True Facts Concerning History's Barest Family

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4 ratings

Not the best Seuss, but still a treat.

People who read this story with nothing but Seuss's children's books will probably be disappointed. The prose lacks the rhythm, charm and whimsy of Seuss's painstakingly constructed rhymes. However, for those who have read the out-of-print collection "The Tough Coughs as he Ploughs the Dough", this volume is possibly the quintessential example of prewar Seuss writing and artwork. The story, consisting of a series of absurd shaggy dog stories that actually have almost nothing to do with the original Godiva story, show Seuss both in his early artwork and in the last throes of his prose writing, before he gave over completely to rhyme and art. Don't go into this expecting "Cat in the Hat" style rhyme or brilliantly colored artwork. Instead, pick up the book and enjoy the last throes of 1930's intellectual whimsy as expressed by Theodor Seuss Geisel's gifted pen and brush.

Straight from the horse's mouth

After Lord Godiva is killed when his horse throws him, his seven daughters swear an oath forsaking marriage to the Peeping brothers until they have each discovered a "truth" about horses. Each of the seven Ladies Godiva struggles to learn something from their equine companions, each eventually composing a now common horse proverb. This book was written in 1939 as an "adult" book, presumably because Dr. Seuss's whimiscal drawings of the nude Godivas would have been considered too risque in that era. By today's standards, these drawings are quite tame, and the stories are actually quite delightful. Dr. Seuss's fanciful tales of the origins of these proverbs is entertaining and his illustrations are pure Seuss.

An Early Dr. Seuss Gem

"A beautiful story of love, honor and scientific achievement" is how Dr. Seuss, with tongue in cheek, describes this book. Touted as Dr. Seuss's first book for adults, The Seven Lady Godivas was originally published in 1939 and reissued in 1987. It tells the story of not one, but seven 11th Century Lady Godivas. They are sisters sworn not to marry their beaus, the seven Peeping brothers (yes, Tom is one of them) until each of them discover a scientific truth about horses. They were driven to this oath by the death of their father during an experiment using a horse as a means of transportation.The history is confused, but the fun never stops. Dr. Seuss's full page drawings (in red, black and white) illustrate every other page. The end papers are a fanciful illustration of the Godiva family tree. The text, though wordier than his childrens books and not in rhyme, is thoroughly Dr. Seuss. He explains the seven sisters preference for nudity by saying they had brains and were not given to vanity. He goes on to say "they were simply themselves and chose not to disguise it." Although this is a great summation of nudist philosophy, it doesn't say much about his regard for women who choose to wear clothes. Instead of scientific truths we are treated by the author to fanciful origins for seven proverbs about horses as each sister discovers her "horse truth" and goes on to marry her boyfriend. If you enjoy Dr. Seuss, you will find these drawings and this story delightful. Although described as an adult book, children will enjoy the story as well. Today's young folks may not be familiar with all seven of the horse proverbs that Dr. Seuss relates in a book that is over 60 years old, but it should not deter from their enjoyment of this amusing tale. The drawings are not detailed enough to offend even the youngest of readers.

Not the typical Suess. Definitely for adults. Very humorous.

Begin with seven Lady Godivas and seven Lord Peepings; add the need for each Godiva to come up with a "horse fable" before being able to wed the Peeping to whom she is betrothed and Theodore Geisel has another winner! Definitely for adults but not at all off-colored. Another must for true Dr. Suess collectors.

Seven Lady Godivas: The True Facts Concerning History's Barest Family Mentions in Our Blog

Seven Lady Godivas: The True Facts Concerning History's Barest Family in Happy Birthday to Seuss!
Happy Birthday to Seuss!
Published by Theia Griffin • February 22, 2021
On March 2, 1904, a boy with soaring and spontaneous imagination was born. His work would go on to touch the lives of children around the world. We're celebrating the birthday of the wonderful Dr. Seuss with a look back at this life and career. Learn about his first book, how he got started, and more and take a peek at some extra-special, vintage copies of his books.
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