RALPH AND THE QUEEN'S BATHTUB by Kay Chorao

RALPH AND THE QUEEN'S BATHTUB

By
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

The Queen's Bathtub is ""a scaly tall house, haunted by a giant witch. . . ugly as a meat grinder."" Ralph doesn't know how it got its name but that's where he finds himself after he is teased by tough Rinaldo and Arty who like to play war, shut out by older brother Nicky's gang, and rebuked by his father for rope-climbing trees in the little kids' park instead of playing with his football or with other boys. The door of the Queen's Bathtub opens and Ralph is snatched inside by the witch, who puts him in the dumbwaiter and sends him upstairs to watch her films (it turns out that she is an old monster movie star). Still afraid of being eaten or at least held captive, Ralph runs off -- and somehow the adventure and the welcome he gets back home prompt Nicky to invite him for football and inspire Ralph himself to make plans to teach Rinaldo and Artie how to ""rope and climb."" Chorao's drawings and the witch house episode are loaded with her usual surreal imagery, but it's the unreality of the upbeat ending that spoils the show.

Pub Date: March 1st, 1974
Page count: 64pp
Publisher: Farrar, Straus & Giroux