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Book Review of The Gawgon and the Boy

The Gawgon and the Boy
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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.