SILVER SPOONS | ELOISE
Eloise by Kay Thompson, Hilary Knight (Illustrator)
Hardcover, 65 pages, Published April 30th 1969 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published 1955)
Maurice Sendak calls Eloise a "brazen, loose-limbed little monster." Pulitzer Prize winner Anna Quindlen finds her pathetic and lonely. Eloise gave Vanity Fair writer Marie Brenner "permission to rebel." Anyone who has been introduced to the eccentric 6-year-old who spends her days at large in New York's Plaza Hotel pouring water down the mail chute and managing her self-imposed responsibilities is fascinated, fascinated, fascinated. She is the only girl we know who feeds her turtle raisins and braids his ears, wears Kleenex boxes on her head (they make very good hats), and gets away with everything.
S3: E11 Paris discusses commencement speakers with Rory for Chilton's upcoming graduation ceremony and compares the ridiculous choices and flippant responses from her fellow classmates.
PARIS: Have you looked over the votes for commencement speaker?
PARIS: Are the ones for Princess Diana’s butler jokes or real?
RORY: I’d say jokes.
PARIS: What about the ones for Dr. Phil?
RORY: I think real.
PARIS: I knew that suggestion box was a bad idea. Watch Choate get Joan Didion while we’re being read Eloise at the Plaza.
Used as a passing reference from Paris to Rory regarding their privileged classmates input to the suggestion box they put out for their commencement speaker, Paris uses this small mention to parallel their suggestions to the child-like jokes and pranks that Eloise uses at the Plaza Hotel. A clever quip concerning the silver-spoon fed, graduating class at Chilton.
"and charge it please"
- pages 25, 30, 56, 58, 60
A children's book, some of the pages have only 5 words on them alongside the cheeky and dramatic illustrations of Eloise at the Plaza. You'll be turning the page every couple of sentences and can finish the 65 pages in a mere ten minutes if you're taking your time.
WHAT THE WHAT?:
Many acclaimed figures in the writing world and members of the general public have differing opinions of the child running through the Plaza Hotel. Simply type Eloise into Goodreads, for example, and you'll see many contrasting opinions in respect to the little girl. As adults we're inclined to worry about the child and whether her loneliness is shown through acting out, yet the book is written of her joy in daily adventures and self-made tales.
CARO'S RATING: 4 of 5 STARS
I see every standpoint to the criticism of this children's book, but I tend to be a proponent for any form of dramatic enthusiasm and eccentricity and therefore quite enjoyed it. I am keen on the story as a form of entertainment, and believe the audience it is written for will find her amusing. From the Plaza Hotel's perspective, of course, this child is an absolute terror and perhaps that is what's so funny about it.
The Plaza New York: The Eloise Suite
Disney's "Eloise at the Plaza"
New York Historical Society: The Brat Behind the Book
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