THE KING AT THE DOOR by Brock Cole

THE KING AT THE DOOR

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The pictures are Rowlandson via Zemach, and the yarn might be termed School of Zemach--but it's a good yarn, and the pictures play effectively to it. ""Master! Master!"" cries chore-boy Little Baggit to the Pickwickian innkeeper. ""The King is at the door!"" But, on rushing to the window, all that the innkeeper sees is ""an old man in a patched shirt""--so he sloughs off each of the stranger's requests. Instead of a glass of wine (""He's been walking over his roads all day counting his milestones,"" says Little Baggit, ""and he's thirsty""), the innkeeper proffers a mug of dishwater; for dinner, the dog's scraps; and so on. But each time Little Baggit makes good his master's deficiency--with his own ale, his own bread, etc. And each time the innkeeper sardonically commends him: ""Little Baggit, you're brighter than a burnt match,"" or such. As children will quickly guess, the last laugh is on the innkeeper--for doesn't the King come back to fetch Little Baggit ""first thing tomorrow in his royal coach,"" just as he's said he will! Crisply told, energetically pictured, and unmistakably amusing.

Pub Date: Aug. 3rd, 1979
Publisher: Doubleday