The Gawgon and the Boy Author:Lloyd Alexander After a life-threatening illness keeps him out of school for months, David is given a tutor to help him catch up-his elderly, tough Aunt Annie, who is as frightening to him as a monstrous, snake-haired Gorgon. He even secretly nicknames her "The Gawgon." But, to David's surprise, a bright heart lurks inside the old woman. She challenges him more... more » than any schoolteacher ever could, opens all sorts of possibilities in his life, and the two of them-The Gawgon and The Boy-develop a very special friendship. Loosely based upon Lloyd Alexander's own childhood, this jewel of a novel will be treasured by readers of all ages.« less
In this semi-autobiographical story, young David, growing up with his large extended family in 1930s Philadelphia, falls ill with what his Aunt Rose calls "New Monia", and after recovering his doctor advises his parents not to send him back to school yet. Instead they decide that "The Boy" will be tutored by his great-aunt Annie ("The Gawgon"), and what David initially dreads turns out to be one of the most exciting and educational experiences in his life. While I found the interspersed adventures of his alter ego a trifle annoying, a younger audience might appreciate it more. While this is not on par with his fantasy works, what I enjoyed most was a glimpse of a boy's life during that time period, and the skillfully drawn characters that are typical of Alexander's work.