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 The beloved story of a spunky young girl and her hilarious escapades.
Tommy and his sister Annika have a new neighbor, and her name is Pippi Longstocking. She has crazy red pigtails, no parents to tell her what to do, a horse that lives on her porch, and a pet monkey named Mr. Nilsson. Whether Pippi’s scrubbing her floors, doing arithmetic, or stirring things up at a fancy tea party, her flair for the outrageous always seems to lead to another adventure. 

"A rollicking story." —The Horn Book

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780140309577
Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date: 05/28/1977
Series: Pippi Longstocking Series
Edition description: Reissue
Pages: 160
Sales rank: 22,549
Product dimensions: 5.14(w) x 7.73(h) x 0.41(d)
Lexile: 870L (what's this?)
Age Range: 8 - 12 Years

About the Author

Astrid Lindgren (1907-2002) was born in Sweden. After college, she worked in a newspaper office and a Swedish publishing house. Her most famous and beloved book, Pippi Longstocking, was originally published in Swedish in 1950, and was later translated into many other languages. It was followed by two sequels, Pippi Goes on Board and Pippi in the South Seas. Ms. Lindgren had a long, prolific career, writing more than 100 picture books, poems, short stories, plays, screenplays, and novels. In 1958, she won the Hans Christian Andersen Medal, the highest international award in children's literature.

Read an Excerpt

Pippi Longstocking

By Astrid Lindgren


Copyright © 1978 Viking Penguin Inc.
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0-14-240249-4

Chapter One

Pippi Moves into Villa Villekulla

Way out at the end of a tiny little town was an old overgrown garden, and in the garden was an old house, and in the house lived Pippi Longstocking. She was nine years old, and she lived there all alone. She had no mother and no father, and that was of course very nice because there was no one to tell her to go to bed just when she was having the most fun, and no one who could make her take cod liver oil when she much preferred caramel candy.

Once upon a time Pippi had had a father of whom she was extremely fond. Naturally she had had a mother too, but that was so long ago that Pippi didn't remember her at all. Her mother had died when Pippi was just a tiny baby and lay in a cradle and howled so that nobody could go anywhere near her. Pippi was sure that her mother was now up in Heaven, watching her little girl through a peephole in the sky, and Pippi often waved up at her and called, "Don't you worry about me. I'll always come out on top."

Pippi had not forgotten her father. He was a sea captain who sailed on the great ocean, and Pippi had sailed with him in his ship until one day her father was blown overboard in a storm and disappeared. But Pippi was absolutely certain that he would come back. She would never believe that he had drowned; she was sure he had floated until he landed on an island inhabited by cannibals. And she thought he had become the king of all the cannibals and went around with a golden crown on his head all day long.

"My papa is a cannibal king; it certainly isn't every child who has such a stylish papa," Pippi used to say with satisfaction. "And as soon as my papa has built himself a boat he will come and get me, and I'll be a cannibal princess. Heigh-ho, won't that be exciting?"

Her father had bought the old house in the garden many years ago. He thought he would live there with Pippi when he grew old and couldn't sail the seas any longer. And then this annoying thing had to happen, that he was blown into the ocean, and while Pippi was waiting for him to come back she went straight home to Villa Villekulla. That was the name of the house. It stood there ready and waiting for her. One lovely summer evening she had said good-by to all the sailors on her father's boat. They were all fond of Pippi, and she of them.

"So long, boys," she said and kissed each one on the forehead. "Don't you worry about me. I'll always come out on top."

Two things she took with her from the ship: a little monkey whose name was Mr. Nilsson-he was a present from her father-and a big suitcase full of gold pieces. The sailors stood upon the deck and watched as long as they could see her. She walked straight ahead without looking back at all, with Mr. Nilsson on her shoulder and her suitcase in her hand.

"A remarkable child," said one of the sailors as Pippi disappeared in the distance.

He was right. Pippi was indeed a remarkable child. The most remarkable thing about her was that she was so strong. She was so very strong that in the whole wide world there was not a single police officer as strong as she. Why, she could lift a whole horse if she wanted to! And she wanted to. She had a horse of her own that she had bought with one of her many gold pieces the day she came home to Villa Villekulla. She had always longed for a horse, and now here he was, living on the porch. When Pippi wanted to drink her afternoon coffee there, she simply lifted him down into the garden.

Beside Villa Villekulla was another garden and another house. In that house lived a father and mother and two charming children, a boy and a girl. The boy's name was Tommy and the girl's Annika. They were good, well brought up, and obedient children. Tommy would never think of biting his nails, and he always did exactly what his mother told him to do. Annika never fussed when she didn't get her own way, and she always looked pretty in her little well-ironed cotton dresses; she took the greatest care not to get them dirty. Tommy and Annika played nicely with each other in their garden, but they had often wished for a playmate. While Pippi was still sailing on the ocean with her father, they often used to hang over the fence and say to each other, "Isn't it silly that nobody ever moves into that house. Somebody ought to live there-somebody with children."

On that lovely summer evening when Pippi for the first time stepped over the threshold of Villa Villekulla, Tommy and Annika were not at home. They had gone to visit their grandmother for a week; and so they had no idea that anybody had moved into the house next door. On the first day after they came home again they stood by the gate, looking out onto the street, and even then they didn't know that there actually was a playmate so near. Just as they were standing there considering what they should do and wondering whether anything exciting was likely to happen or whether it was going to be one of those dull days when they couldn't think of anything to play-just then the gate of Villa Villekulla opened and a little girl stepped out. She was the most remarkable girl Tommy and Annika had ever seen. She was Miss Pippi Longstocking out for her morning promenade. This is the way she looked:

Her hair, the color of a carrot, was braided in two tight braids that stuck straight out. Her nose was the shape of a very small potato and was dotted all over with freckles. It must be admitted that the mouth under this nose was a very wide one, with strong white teeth. Her dress was rather unusual. Pippi herself had made it. She had meant it to be blue, but there wasn't quite enough blue cloth, so Pippi had sewed little red pieces on it here and there. On her long thin legs she wore a pair of long stockings, one brown and the other black, and she had on a pair of black shoes that were exactly twice as long as her feet. These shoes her father had bought for her in South America so that Pippi would have something to grow into, and she never wanted to wear any others.

But the thing that made Tommy and Annika open their eyes widest of all was the monkey sitting on the strange girl's shoulder. It was a little monkey, dressed in blue pants, yellow jacket, and a white straw hat.

Pippi walked along the street with one foot on the sidewalk and the other in the gutter. Tommy and Annika watched as long as they could see her. In a little while she came back, and now she was walking backward. That was because she didn't want to turn around to get home. When she reached Tommy's and Annika's gate she stopped.

The children looked at each other in silence. At last Tommy spoke. "Why did you walk backward?"

"Why did I walk backward?" said Pippi. "Isn't this a free country? Can't a person walk any way she wants to? For that matter, let me tell you that in Egypt everybody walks that way, and nobody thinks it's the least bit strange."

"How do you know?" asked Tommy. "You've never been in Egypt, have you?"

"I've never been in Egypt? Indeed I have. That's one thing you can be sure of. I have been all over the world and seen many things stranger than people walking backward. I wonder what you would have said if I had come along walking on my hands the way they do in Farthest India."

"Now you must be lying," said Tommy.

Pippi thought a moment. "You're right," she said sadly, "I am lying."

"It's wicked to lie," said Annika, who had at last gathered up enough courage to speak.

"Yes, it's very wicked to lie," said Pippi even more sadly. "But I forget it now and then. And how can you expect a little child whose mother is an angel and whose father is king of a cannibal island and who herself has sailed on the ocean all her life-how can you expect her to tell the truth always? And for that matter," she continued, her whole freckled face lighting up, "let me tell you that in the Congo there is not a single person who tells the truth. They lie all day long. Begin at seven in the morning and keep on until sundown. So if I should happen to lie now and then, you must try to excuse me and to remember that it is only because I stayed in the Congo a little too long. We can be friends anyway, can't we?"

"Oh, sure," said Tommy and realized suddenly that this was not going to be one of those dull days.

"By the way, why couldn't you come and have breakfast with me?" asked Pippi.

"Why not?" said Tommy. "Come on, let's go."

"Oh, yes, let's," said Annika.

"But first I must introduce you to Mr. Nilsson," said Pippi, and the little monkey took off his cap and bowed politely.

Then they all went in through Villa Villekulla's tumbledown garden gate, along the gravel path, bordered with old moss-covered trees-really good climbing trees they seemed to be-up to the house, and onto the porch. There stood the horse, munching oats out of a soup bowl.

"Why do you have a horse on the porch?" asked Tommy. All horses he knew lived in stables.

"Well," said Pippi thoughtfully, "he'd be in the way in the kitchen, and he doesn't like the parlor."

Tommy and Annika patted the horse and then went on into the house. It had a kitchen, a parlor, and a bedroom. But it certainly looked as if Pippi had forgotten to do her Friday cleaning that week. Tommy and Annika looked around cautiously just in case the king of the Cannibal Isles might be sitting in a corner somewhere. They had never seen a cannibal king in all their lives. But there was no father to be seen, nor any mother either.

Annika said anxiously, "Do you live here all alone?"

"Of course not!" said Pippi. "Mr. Nilsson and the horse live here too."

"Yes, but I mean don't you have any mother or father here?"

"No, not the least little tiny bit of a one," said Pippi happily.

"But who tells you when to go to bed at night and things like that?" asked Annika.

"I tell myself," said Pippi. "First I tell myself in a nice friendly way; and then, if I don't mind, I tell myself again more sharply; and if I still don't mind, then I'm in for a spanking-see?"

Tommy and Annika didn't see at all, but they thought maybe it was a good way. Meanwhile they had come out into the kitchen, and Pippi cried,

Now we're going to make a pancake, Now there's going to be a pankee, Now we're going to fry a pankye.

Then she took three eggs and threw them up in the air. One fell down on her head and broke so that the yolk ran into her eyes, but the others she caught skillfully in a bowl, where they smashed to pieces.

"I always did hear that egg yolk was good for the hair," said Pippi, wiping her eyes. "You wait and see-mine will soon begin to grow so fast it will crackle. As a matter of fact, in Brazil all the people go about with eggs in their hair. And there are no bald-headed people. Only once was there a man who was so foolish that he ate his eggs instead of rubbing them on his hair. He became completely bald, and when he showed himself on the street there was such a riot that the police were called out."

While she was speaking Pippi had neatly picked the eggshells out of the bowl with her fingers. Now she took a bath brush that hung on the wall and began to beat the pancake batter so hard that it splashed all over the walls. At last she poured what was left onto a griddle that stood on the stove.

When the pancake was brown on one side she tossed it halfway up to the ceiling, so that it turned right around in the air, and then she caught it on the griddle again. And when it was ready she threw it straight across the kitchen right onto a plate that stood on the table.

"Eat!" she cried. "Eat before it gets cold!"

And Tommy and Annika ate and thought it a very good pancake.

Afterward Pippi invited them to step into the parlor. There was only one piece of furniture in there. It was a huge chest with many tiny drawers. Pippi opened the drawers and showed Tommy and Annika all the treasures she kept there. There were wonderful birds' eggs, strange shells and stones, pretty little boxes, lovely silver mirrors, pearl necklaces, and many other things that Pippi and her father had bought on their journeys around the world. Pippi gave each of her new playmates a little gift to remember her by. Tommy got a dagger with a shimmering mother-of-pearl handle and Annika, a little box with a cover decorated with pink shells. In the box there was a ring with a green stone.

"Suppose you go home now," said Pippi, "so that you can come back tomorrow. Because if you don't go home you can't come back, and that would be a shame."

Tommy and Annika agreed that it would indeed. So they went home-past the horse, who had now eaten up all the oats, and out through the gate of Villa Villekulla. Mr. Nilsson waved his hat at them as they left.


Excerpted from Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren Copyright © 1978 by Viking Penguin Inc. . Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Pippi Longstocking 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 57 reviews.
18876111 More than 1 year ago
This book is filled with so much nonsense, but that's what makes it so charming. It's such a great story of friendship and being independent, and being able to think for yourself. Pippi growing up on the sea never went to school, and she has the wildest imagination and was such a fun character to read. This book is a lighthearted fun read, and it's hard not to laugh at some of the things that Pippi says.
JohannaJ on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Pippi Longstalking is one of my favorite children's classics. Pippi is a great female character for little girls. She's self assured and strong (literally). You wont regret it.
Ambrosia4 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It's still the hilarious children's novel I remember from my childhood. I really look forward to reading this to my children someday... I remember that the hijinks this girl got up to inspired me when I was younger, although not necessarily to be badly behaved. Just to be more curious, like a "thing-finder" as Pippi and her friends become. Or to explore woods or look at things in a different way. A unique children's classic, to be sure.
Embejo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Funny. Had my 5 year old giggling and begging for more. As soon as we finished she asked to go back and re-read her favourite chapters. I still have memories of enjoying it as a child and it was fun to revisit. I like that each chapter can be read as a short story of it¿s own.
dylantanner on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Pippi Longstockings is a girl of tremendous strength and talent who brings an adventurous spirit to a small village in Sweden(?). She's a girl who has everything, except parents.New Classic FictionThis book is fun and really silly. It totally captured my imagination and made me wish my own life were more adventurous. It's a great one.I think using this book as a jumping off point for kids to imagine their own fantasy lives. The way Pippi finds adventure in her own neighborhood the way she did on the South Seas would really grab kid's attention. The language is a bit antiquated though and may need some explaining.
skraftdesigns on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Another favorite from childhood. Reading this as an adult I realize how much the Pippi series has influenced my life. As a child I wanted to be her, and as a grown-up perhaps I've turned into her- minus the horse and monkey. I try to keep the unique clothes to a minimum too, but I've always admired her spirit of independence and make-your-own-fun. She leads her neighbor friends, and boy and a girl, into many an adventure, and perhaps they ground Pippi just a bit. As a story, there is really nothing to compare it to.
claire.cavell on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book follows the adventures of Pippi Longstocking who is a young girl who lost her mother at a young age so lived with her father on a ship until he suddenly was lost at sea. Her playmates were the shipmates. So Pippi's lifestyle and manners are a bit unconventional. After her father fell off the ship Pippi decided to leave her shipmates and live in the home her father had purchased and set up for them. She then meets her neighbors a little boy and girl and the story follows Pippi and her new friends and the adventures they face.
szierdt on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Oh classic Pippi! Young and (most) old can't help but love this parentless character and all her shinanigans. Most of Pippi's quarkiness and adventures stem from her being outside societal norms and the rules of parents and officials. I really apreciate how Lindgren describes Pippi and creates for the reader a perfect interpretation of what she looks like. This would be a great book for exploring how writers shape their characters and what characters and situations further increase our relationship with her as a reader. Children could be instructed to find description, phrases, characters and circumstances writing them down or underlining as they move throught the stories. At the end, they can use this information to focus on creating a collage and illustration of what they think she looks like. As well, I would imagine some sort of character map or chart could be created.
ander23 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Pippi is an anarchist. She pursues her passions unhampered by any social rules. She won't teach kids the importance of getting to bed on time, or the benefits of healthy meals, or the rewards of formal education, but she will infect kids with her exuberant love of life. Somebody else can teach kids about manners :) Pippi inspires them with her kindness and generosity and loyalty. Kids can learn to defer to authority elsewhere. Pippi models a joyful self-assurance and clever resourcefulness as she takes into her own hands matters of protecting the helpless and standing up for the underprivileged. 5 stars.
MrsBond on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Strange combination of Amelia Bedelia, Cat in the Hat with a hint of Roald Dahl wrapped into one precocious little girl. Painful to read chapter after chapter, much more palatable individually. Pippi believes her mother is an angel and her father the king of the cannibals. At age 9 she lives without adult supervision with a horse and monkey. She spends her days with the children next door who enjoy Pippi's antics.
DameMuriel on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was my second favorite book when I was a kid (Alice in Wonderland was #1). I'm not sure if kids read it much these days but I hope so. It's very odd and very funny.
librarianista76 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is a fun read about a zany girl named Pippi. Unlike other girls like her neighbor friend, Annika, Pippi is messy , rowdy, and rebellious. She lives with her horse and monkey. She shares many fun adventures, such as going to school and the circus. Her escapades are guaranteed to make you laugh!
pippi-longstockings on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
As a kid with freckles and red hair, Pippi was my hero. I love how tough she is. I read this book over and over as a kid, and I still have the books which now and then I read.My favourite girl!!
elmyra on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
One of my favourite children's books ever. Picked up an English translation recently to fill a hole in Paul's education and promptly re-read it myself. Pippi is clearly the best female role model for little girls ever. Slight mark-down for the translation - the Bulgarian one I have being (almost certainly) superior in its purging of the one reference to religion.
phebj on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I decided to read this book again for several reasons: I loved it as a child (admittedly a long time ago), it fit into two reading challenges I'm currently doing and there was an interesting article about it in the New York Times recently (on May 21, 2010). The article talked about Steig Larsson using Pippi as his model for Lisbeth Salander, the "heroine" in his Millenium trilogy. According to the Times article, when Larsson delivered his manuscript to his publisher, he said: ¿My point of departure was what Pippi Longstocking would be like as an adult. Would she be called a sociopath because she looked upon society in a different way and has no social competence?¿ I thought this was an interesting question since I remembered Pippi as slightly outrageous but basically a happy, go-lucky little girl and certainly not a sociopath. On this reading of the book, I still saw Pippi as strong, independent, self-confident and outrageous (in a fun way) but there was also a darker side to her life that I don't remember focusing on as a child. She's a 9-year old girl who lives by herself and doesn't go to school, so has no adult support system, and often seems to be aware that she's a social misfit. So, do I think she's a model for Lisbeth Salander? Unfortunately, I can't answer that question because I'm one of a handful of people who still has not read Steig Larsson's books! I'm giving this book 3 stars, mostly for old times' sake, and I would definitely recommend reading it with a child.
MissReadsALot on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I have loved this book ever since 3rd grade. It's a great read for anyone who's looking for an easy read.
raizel on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I remember enjoying this and other Pippi Longstocking books as a child, but not so much as an adult: Perhaps I no longer find her lack of self-control and her inability to think about the consequences of her actions less amusing and more disturbing.
TheLiteraryPhoenix More than 1 year ago
Pippi Longstocking is a rambunctious youngster with so much energy and mirth. She's constantly on the prowl for some sort of adventure to be had and in many ways, she reminds me of a more active, more troublesome version of Peter Pan. At the center of it all, Pippi has a good heart, but she is a handful. I didn't read this book as a child, and as an adult, it didn't really appeal to me. There wasn't a lot of rhyme or reason to it, and it was too stressful to be enchanting. On personal enjoyment, I'd actually only give this 1.5 stars. But sometimes, SOMETIMES, I can write a review that's a bit more objective and I do believe that as a book, Pippi Longstocking deserves four. Why? Well, first of all, this wasn't written for me. It was written for children. And as such - the writing style is charming and has a great flow. The stories bump from one adventure to another and would make a great bedtime story, because they send the imagination running. Additionally, the characters are varied and interesting, and children will enjoy them. For its intended audience, I think this book is great.
1morechapter on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I first read Pippi over 30 years ago, and it has always had a special place in my childhood reading memories. Unfortunately, it really doesn¿t hold up when read as an adult, at least for me anyway. I still enjoyed it (rated it a 4), and if I had a daughter, I would love for her to read it. I love how it shows Pippi¿s independence and the way she¿s mature but childish at the same time. I love her interaction with Tommy, Annika, and Mr. Nilsson. But, it just didn¿t live up to my childhood memory of it. I adored this book as a youngster and wanted to adore it again. I liked it very much but didn¿t love it. Perhaps some books are best left in our childhood.
Caim2 More than 1 year ago
This is the first of the Pippi series. Learn about Pippi and her friends Annika, Tommy, and of course Mr. Nilsson (a monkey)! Very fun for both girls and boys age 8 to adult.
MicheleLeesBookLove More than 1 year ago
We bought this book. Pippi Longstocking is a classic that's becoming increasingly overlooked. It's an offbeat tale (in the vein of Roald Dahl's works, but more whimsical and less creepy) of a little girl whose father is lost at sea and who lives alone in a villa in a typical (older) suburban neighborhood. Her best friends are her neighbors Tommy and Annika, who are transported to a wild mentality when they're around Pippi that breaks free of the rigorous demands and roles the rest of the world is putting on them. There's no doubting that Pippi is a black sheep, at times nonsensical, and badly behaving. But likewise she also encourages Tommy and Annika (and the readers through Tommy and Annika) to look at things a new way, question why things are as they are, and encourages them not to forget to have fun. While it's true that Pippi is becoming dated, the situations, especially socially, that the children in this book face are still real. Speaking as a girl who always wanted to be as strong, brave and clever as Pippi when I grew up these books can still make a great, fun read for kids, and can give kids a sorely needed role model in the literary world (especially girls, who are a little light on literary heroes to begin with). We read it before bed at night over the last few weeks and my kids looked forward to it every night. They enjoy Pippi's silly logic, but most of all her indomitable spirit and her willingness to try anything and face up to the scariest of situations. Highly recommended for older, but still child audiences, Pippi Longstocking is a great teacher of not judging a person by their looks, but how they support and empower the people around them. Recommended for: 7 and up (loose) Contains: Kids playing with guns (briefly)
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