Curious George

Curious George

by H. A. Rey

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On June 14, 1940, Hans and Margret Rey fled Paris as the German army invaded the city. Escaping on bicycles, they took only winter coats and four picture books strapped to the racks. Among those books were the watercolors and a rough text for Fifi, later known to the world as Curious George.

However, when Curious George was actually published in the United States in 1941, these original watercolors were not used for the printing. Hans Rey was required by his editor to redraw the entire book, creating preseparated art, so that costs would be minimal. The Reys retained the original art and would, on rare occasion, treat carefully chosen friends and collectors to George as he was first envisioned in Paris those many years ago. During their lifetimes they parted with only five pieces of the extraordinary art.

For this edition, the original Curious George drawings have been retrieved and reassembled, using modern reproductive techniques. For readers, comparing the originals - hat for hat and grin for grin - against their published counterparts will be intriguing and a great deal of fun. Now all of George's millions of friends can experience what only a few people have ever seen: George "in the act of becoming himself."

Throughout their lives the Reys created many lively titles together, but it is their incorrigible little monkey Curious George who has become an American icon, selling millions of books and capturing the hearts of readers everywhere.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780395453476
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 10/01/1987
Series: Curious George Series
Edition description: None
Pages: 12
Product dimensions: 8.38(w) x 10.40(h) x 0.69(d)
Age Range: 5 - 8 Years

About the Author

Hans and Margret Rey created many books during their lives together, including Curious George, one of the most treasured classics of all time, as well as other favorites like Spotty and Pretzel. But it was their rambunctious little monkey who became an instantly recognizable icon. After the Reys escaped Paris by bicycle in 1940 carrying the manuscript for the original Curious George, the book was published in America in 1941. More than 200 Curious George titles followed, with 75 million books sold worldwide. Curious George has been successfully adapted into a major motion picture and an Emmy-winning television show on PBS.

The Reys were born in Hamburg, Germany. Hans Augusto Rey (1898-1977) met his wife-to-be, Margret (1906-1996), at a party in her father’s home in Germany; when he first caught a glimpse of her, she was sliding down the banister. In their twenties and thirties they lived in Paris and in Rio de Janeiro, where Hans sold bathtubs in villages along the Amazon River. Eventually Cambridge, Massachusetts, became the Reys’ home and community. Throughout their lives the Reys created many lively books together, including SPOTTY, PRETZEL, and lift-the-flap books such as HOW DO YOU GET THERE? The manuscript of the first Curious George books was one of the few items the Reys carried with them on their bicycles when they escaped from Paris in 1940. Eventually, they made their way to the United States, and CURIOUS GEORGE was published in 1941. Their incorrigible little monkey has become an American icon, selling millions of books and capturing the hearts of readers everywhere. CURIOUS GEORGE has been published in many languages, including French, German, Japanese, Afrikaans, and Norwegian. Additional Curious George books followed, as well as such other favorites as CECILY G. AND THE NINE MONKEYS and FIND THE CONSTELLATIONS. Visit

Place of Birth:

Hamburg, Germany; Margret in 1906, and H.A. in 1898

Place of Death:

Cambridge, Massachusetts; Margret died in 1996, H.A. in 1977

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"Children will welcome with great delight this fourth book about the engaging little monkey." Horn Book Guide

Customer Reviews

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Curious George 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 36 reviews.
SleepDreamWrite More than 1 year ago
Another good read.
psycheKK More than 1 year ago
I would recommend any version of Curious George, especially the original 1941 version. The story is sweet and the illustrations are delightful. I would not, however, recommend reading it all in one sitting to a toddler. I broke the story into two readings and that seemed to work out pretty well. Also, even though this is not a chapter book, it seemed like a good way to introduce the concept of them. My book is in paperback, which is fine since I'll probably be reading the book to my son. It is a good idea to reinforce the spine of paperbacks with clear packing tape. It will help them last much longer.
Elaine de Beaumont More than 1 year ago
I ADORE Curious George. He exhibits love and caring, exactly what any normal "child" should. Yes, he gets into trouble and his owner is there to see that he knows the correct wayvto do something. How marvelous to instill such love and pass on knowledge!! I guess all of this must have been missed on some people.
TEST NOOKUSER More than 1 year ago
this is a timeless classic childrens book, on par with Babar and and the little train that could
Othemts on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is a children's classic but I find it a little disturbing. There's an undercurrent of misery in the text that doesn't jibe with the smiling monkey in the pictures.
allawishus on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Curious George is, of course, a mischievous little monkey who gets taken from his home in Africa and brought to live in the big city by the man in the yellow hat. Along the way he gets in many misadventures including falling off a big boat, accidentally calling the fire department and causing them trouble, getting put in jail, getting blown away with a handful of balloons, and finally getting put in the zoo. This is long for a picture book, but the text is simple and would be a good introduction to indpendent reading for newer readers. I think the characterization of George is what has made these books so popular - he's sweet, naive, often misunderstands or takes things too literally, etc. I think kids identify with him. The illustrations are bright, old-fashioned, lovely. I'm pretty sure they were originally done with a limited color palette but have been "colorized" in subsequent reprints?The story itself is kind of disturbing in retrospect: George is basically kidnapped/poached from Africa by the Man in the Yellow Hat, he's nonsensically "jailed" for calling in a false alarm to the fire department, and finally he ends up in the zoo - you know, trapped in a cage rather than running around free in Africa. This is very different from the Curious George most kids are probably used to seeing via the movies and the PBS show.
conuly on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I was familiar with the character, of course, but I don't recall ever reading the first book.And now I think I see why. It is a little stuck in the past, isn't it? We don't glorify poaching anymore, nor smoking, nor old-fashioned zoos. (And that just messes with the series canon, that, since George doesn't live in the zoo in any of the other books.)Moreover, my nieces don't find this book interesting, but they do find more recent Curious George stories interesting. Please read this before you buy to make sure it's right for your kids.
Marylee1973 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The original-mine says 1941 renewed 1969. All time favs. this little monkey is so funny when he has a smoke on the bed. of course out dated in the sense it calls the cop fat. all in all a sweet story. You are so glad he makes it to the zoo before anyone really gets hurt..LOL
MrsLee on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is my favorite Curious George story.
jeriannthacker on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The original book about that trouble-causing monkey and his owner in the yellow hat. A classic for all ages.
Carstairs38 More than 1 year ago
This book doesn't hold up as well today as it did when I was a kid, not to mention that George really is kidnapped from his home. Still, kids will enjoy the story of the very curious monkey.
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daisymag More than 1 year ago
im glad to see one of my favorite childrens books on nook
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was my favorite book when i was a child! Now i can read it to my nephew while we look at my nook.
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Lanee Ross More than 1 year ago
this book is very good..they should make more of them like this one..i love ccurious george
Stephan Gilliam More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've always loved the character of Curious George. I had the stuffed animal growing up and was even referred to as "George" for a short time as a child. When I was in a rush to grab a book for my son last month I bought this original Curious George story assuming I would love it. Turns out, I guess, I've never actually read the original which covers how George ended up with the man in the yellow hat to begin with. Essentially, the man shows up in Africa with his hunting rifle, sticks a bag over George to catch him and takes him back to the U.S. to live in a zoo. I immediately felt like it wasn't the right book for us! Yes, he's still the same lovable, curious little creature, but the gun and taking him out of his natural habitat aren't values I want to start off teaching my little one when there are so many other choices of books with purely positive plots and messages.
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