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Pinocchio: "The Tale of a Puppet"

Pinocchio: "The Tale of a Puppet"

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Pinocchio: "The Tale of a Puppet"

4/5 (34 ratings)
272 pages
2 hours
Aug 6, 2015


There was once upon a time a piece of wood in the shop of an old carpenter named Master Antonio. Everybody, however, called him Master Cherry, on account of the end of his nose, which was always as red and polished as a ripe cherry.

No sooner had Master Cherry set eyes on the piece of wood than his face beamed with delight, and, rubbing his hands together with satisfaction, he said softly to himself:

"This wood has come at the right moment; it will just do to make the leg of a little table."
He immediately took a sharp axe with which to remove the bark and the rough surface, but just as he was going to give the first stroke he heard a very small voice say implor-ingly, "Do not strike me so hard!"
He turned his terrified eyes all around the room to try and discover where the little voice could possibly have come from, but he saw nobody! He looked under the bench—nobody; he looked into a cupboard that was always shut—nobody; he looked into a basket of shavings and sawdust—nobody; he even opened the door of the shop and gave a glance into the street—and still nobody. Who, then, could it be?

Aug 6, 2015

About the author

Carlo Collodi is the pen name of Italian author Carlo Lorenzini, creator of the beloved children’s character, Pinocchio. A Tuscan who fought in Italy’s wars of unification, Collodi was already a famous novelist and popular translator of French fairy tales when he began to contribute chapters in the life of a marionette to Italy’s first newspaper for children, Il Giornale per i Bambini. The adventures of the disobedient puppet were an immediate success and Pinocchio’s story has been translated and adapted numerous times, including the classic 1940 animated production from Walt Disney. Collodi died in 1890.

Book Preview

Pinocchio - Carlo Collodi



There was once upon a time a piece of wood in the shop of an old carpenter named Master Antonio. Everybody, however, called him Master Cherry, on account of the end of his nose, which was always as red and polished as a ripe cherry.

No sooner had Master Cherry set eyes on the piece of wood than his face beamed with delight, and, rubbing his hands together with satisfaction, he said softly to himself:

This wood has come at the right moment; it will just do to make the leg of a little table.

He immediately took a sharp axe with which to remove the bark and the rough surface, but just as he was going to give the first stroke he heard a very small voice say imploringly, Do not strike me so hard!

He turned his terrified eyes all around the room to try and discover where the little voice could possibly have come from, but he saw nobody! He looked under the bench—nobody; he looked into a cupboard that was always shut—nobody; he looked into a basket of shavings and sawdust—nobody; he even opened the door of the shop and gave a glance into the street—and still nobody. Who, then, could it be?

I see how it is, he said, laughing and scratching his wig, evidently that little voice was all my imagination. Let us set to work again.

And, taking up the axe, he struck a tremendous blow on the piece of wood.

Oh! oh! you have hurt me! cried the same little voice dolefully.

This time Master Cherry was petrified. His eyes started out of his head with fright, his mouth remained open, and his tongue hung out almost to the end of his chin, like a mask on a fountain. As soon as he had recovered the use of his speech he began to say, stuttering and trembling with fear:

But where on earth can that little voice have come from that said 'Oh! oh!'? Is it possible that this piece of wood can have learned to cry and to lament like a child? I cannot believe it. This piece of wood is nothing but a log for fuel like all the others, and thrown on the fire it would about suffice to boil a saucepan of beans. How then? Can anyone be hidden inside it? If anyone is hidden inside, so much the worse for him. I will settle him at once.

So saying, he seized the poor piece of wood and commenced beating it without mercy against the walls of the room.

Then he stopped to listen if he could hear any little voice lamenting. He waited two minutes—nothing; five minutes—nothing; ten minutes—still nothing!

I see how it is, he then said, forcing himself to laugh, and pushing up his wig; evidently the little voice that said 'Oh! oh!' was all my imagination! Let us set to work again.

Putting the axe aside, he took his plane, to plane and polish the bit of wood; but whilst he was running it up and down he heard the same little voice say, laughing:

Stop! you are tickling me all over!

This time poor Master Cherry fell down as if he had been struck by lightning. When he at last opened his eyes he found himself seated on the floor.

His face was changed, even the end of his nose, instead of being crimson, as it was nearly always, had become blue from fright.



At that moment some one knocked at the door.

Come in, said the carpenter, without having the strength to rise to his feet.

A lively little old man immediately walked into the shop. His name was Geppetto, but when the boys of the neighborhood wished to make him angry they called him Pudding, because his yellow wig greatly resembled a pudding made of Indian corn.

Geppetto was very fiery. Woe to him who called him Pudding! He became furious and there was no holding him.

Good-day, Master Antonio, said Geppetto; what are you doing there on the floor?

I am teaching the alphabet to the ants.

Much good may that do you.

What has brought you to me, neighbor Geppetto?

My legs. But to tell the truth. Master Antonio, I came to ask a favor of you.

Here I am, ready to serve you, replied the carpenter, getting on his knees.

This morning an idea came into my head.

Let us hear it.

I thought I would make a beautiful wooden puppet; one that could dance, fence, and leap like an acrobat. With this puppet I would travel about the world to earn a piece of bread and a glass of wine. What do you think of it?

Bravo, Pudding! exclaimed the same little voice, and it was impossible to say where it came from.

Hearing himself called Pudding, Geppetto became as red as a turkey-cock from rage and, turning to the carpenter, he said in a fury:

Why do you insult me?

Who insults you?

You called me Pudding!

It was not I!

Do you think I called myself Pudding? It was you, I say!





And, becoming more and more angry, from words they came to blows, and, flying at each other, they bit and fought, and scratched.

When the fight was over Master Antonio was in possession of Geppetto's yellow wig, and Geppetto discovered that the grey wig belonging to the carpenter remained between his teeth.

Give me back my wig, screamed Master Antonio.

And you, return me mine, and let us be friends again.

The two old men having each recovered his own wig, shook hands and swore that they would remain friends to the end of their lives.

Well, then, neighbor Geppetto, said the carpenter, to prove that peace was made, what is the favor that you wish of me?

I want a little wood to make my puppet; will you give me some?

Master Antonio was delighted, and he immediately went to the bench and fetched the piece of wood that had caused him so much fear. But just as he was going to give it to his friend the piece of wood gave a shake and, wriggling violently out of his hands, struck with all of its force against the dried-up shins of poor Geppetto.

Ah! is that the courteous way in which you make your presents, Master Antonio? You have almost lamed me!

I swear to you that it was not I!

Then you would have it that it was I?

The wood is entirely to blame!

I know that it was the wood; but it was you that hit my legs with it!

I did not hit you with it!


Geppetto, don't insult me or I will call you Pudding!







On hearing himself called Pudding for the third time Geppetto, mad with rage, fell upon the carpenter and they fought desperately.

When the battle was over, Master Antonio had two more scratches on his nose, and his adversary had lost two buttons off his waistcoat. Their accounts being thus squared, they shook hands and swore to remain good friends for the rest of their lives.

Geppetto carried off his fine piece of wood and, thanking Master Antonio, returned limping to his house.



Geppetto lived in a small ground-floor room that was only lighted from the staircase. The furniture could not have been simpler—a rickety chair, a poor bed, and a broken-down table. At the end of the room there was a fireplace with a lighted fire; but the fire was painted, and by the fire was a painted saucepan that was boiling cheerfully and sending out a cloud of smoke that looked exactly like real smoke.

As soon as he reached home Geppetto took his tools and set to work to cut out and model his puppet.

What name shall I give him? he said to himself; I think I will call him Pinocchio. It is a name that will bring him luck. I once knew a whole family so called. There was Pinocchio the father, Pinocchia the mother, and Pinocchi the children, and all of them did well. The richest of them was a beggar.

A Little Chicken Popped Out,

Very Gay and Polite

Having found a name for his puppet he began to work in good earnest, and he first made his hair, then his forehead, and then his eyes.

The eyes being finished, imagine his astonishment when he perceived that they moved and looked fixedly at him.

Geppetto, seeing himself stared at by those two wooden eyes, said in an angry voice:

Wicked wooden eyes, why do you look at me?

No one answered.

He then proceeded to carve the nose, but no sooner had he made it than it began to grow. And it grew, and grew, and grew, until in a few minutes it had become an immense nose that seemed as if it would never end.

Poor Geppetto tired himself out with cutting it off, but the more he cut and shortened it, the longer did that impertinent nose become!

The mouth was not even completed when it began to laugh and deride him.

Stop laughing! said Geppetto, provoked; but he might as well have spoken to the wall.

Stop laughing, I say! he roared in a threatening tone.

The mouth then ceased laughing, but put out its tongue as far as it would go.

Geppetto, not to spoil his handiwork, pretended not to see and continued his labors. After the mouth he fashioned the chin, then the throat, then the shoulders, the stomach, the arms and the hands.

The hands were scarcely finished when Geppetto felt his wig snatched from his head. He turned round, and what did he see? He saw his yellow wig in the puppet's hand.

Pinocchio! Give me back my wig instantly!

But Pinocchio, instead of returning it, put it on his own head and was in consequence nearly smothered.

Geppetto at this insolent and derisive behavior felt sadder and more melancholy than he had ever been in his life before; and, turning to Pinocchio, he said to him:

You young rascal! You are not yet completed and you are already beginning to show want of respect to your father! That is bad, my boy, very bad!

And he dried a tear.

The legs and the feet remained to be done.

When Geppetto had finished the feet he received a kick on the point of his nose.

I deserve it! he said to himself; I should have thought of it sooner! Now it is too late!

He then took the puppet under the arms and placed him on the floor to teach him to walk.

Pinocchio's legs were stiff and he could not move, but Geppetto led him by the hand and showed him how to put one foot before the other.

When his legs became limber Pinocchio began to walk by himself and to run about the room, until, having gone out of the house door, he jumped into the street and escaped.

Poor Geppetto rushed after him but was not able to overtake him, for that rascal Pinocchio leaped in front of him like a hare and knocking his wooden feet together against the pavement made as much clatter as twenty pairs of peasants' clogs.

Stop him! stop him! shouted Geppetto; but the people in the street, seeing a wooden puppet running like a race-horse, stood still in astonishment to look at it, and laughed and laughed.

At last, as good luck would have it, a soldier arrived who, hearing the uproar, imagined that a colt had escaped from his master. Planting himself courageously with his legs apart in the middle of the road, he waited with the determined purpose of stopping him and thus preventing the chance of worse disasters.

When Pinocchio, still at some distance, saw the soldier barricading the whole street, he endeavored to take him by surprise and to pass between his legs. But he failed entirely.

The soldier without disturbing himself in the least caught him cleverly by the nose and gave him to Geppetto. Wishing to punish him, Geppetto intended to pull his ears at once. But imagine his feelings

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What people think about Pinocchio

34 ratings / 43 Reviews
What did you think?
Rating: 0 out of 5 stars

Reader reviews

  • (3/5)
    (Original Review, 1981-05-20)I am reading the English version of Pinocchio; I read it, obviously many times in my language and the other day I found a small book with this title and I was curious to see how it was in a different language from mine. I also want to "invite him for dinner" as it is the title of a context of a famous Italian newspaper (writing an invitation for a character of a book at your choice) but I have not yet written a word. I am not too keen on inviting to meals, it means extra work and I did it enough. But maybe by reading it I’ll get inspired.I read Pinocchio in a dual English/Italian text. My Italian is pretty much limited to what I have gleaned from endless listening to the Mozart/da Ponte operas, so I only occasionally referred to the original language. I did come away with the word (and concept) “tornagusto”, a kind of appetizer taken mid-meal, between courses. The word occurs in the scene in which the Fox buys an elaborate meal with Pinocchio’s gold. I’ve since learned that it isn’t a common word in Italian and may be a Collodi coinage. It’s likely that a tornagusto is only needed for overindulged appetites, which definitely happens in my reading from time to time. That’s proven a useful concept in my reading life – having temporarily exhausted my interest in a particular branch of reading, I turn to a short work or essay collection as a kind of mental “tornagusto.”The peculiarity of Pinocchio is that his nose grows when he tells lies (I bet you didn’t know this…); imagine what would happen if it was so also for us? Particularly politicians...there would be real fun, I suppose.[2018 EDIT: Tornagusto is a sort of" feel the taste again", the flavour and the pleasure of life, of reading and of many things, in the end. Nice, I think that from time to time we all need a tornagusto. But the pleasure of music do not need one : it is all over, I can hear the chirping chirping sound of a bird conversation in the garden through my open window and I do not need tornagusto to appreciate the beauty of spring, here again after a long period of cold and rain. And Mozart...I love, I adore him. Since I was a little boy, I always found him absolutely marvellous, and it helped me in several life instances...tornagusto listening to the serenata in sol magggiore opera etc., and it’ll all melt into that fascinating air.]
  • (4/5)
    The Adventures of Pinocchio is a novel for children by Italian author Carlo Collodi. It is about the mischievous adventures of Pinocchio a marionette; and his poor father, a woodcarver named Geppetto. Pinocchio was created as a wooden puppet but dreamed of becoming a real boy. Its main theme is that of a naughty child who must learn to be good, not just for his own sake but for the sake of others around him too. The thing to keep in mind is that this is not your Disney’s Pinocchio. This classic flirts with death and disasters that Pinocchio can’t seem to stay away from. At various points in the story Pinocchio is hung from a tree until he dies, he bites a cat's paw off, his leg is caught in a bear trap, he gets arrested and he is turned into a donkey. Oh My! Despite this and the moral lessons being “taught”—the adventures are really quite fun. Despite some of moralizing and the gruesomeness of the story I found myself really liking this tale. 4 out of 5 stars.
  • (3/5)
    Classic tale.
  • (4/5)
    I have to say, my only previous experience with the story of Pinocchio is through the Disney classic cartoon…and boy is this a LOT different than the Disney version! I’m not saying that’s a bad thing…far from it in fact, I was just surprised at how selfish and, well…disobedient this little wooden boy was. In this book, Pinnochio isn’t a naive boy who gets led astray; he’s a selfish, lying, bad-tempered puppet who (for the most part) can’t see past his own immediate wants and needs. He constantly makes bad decisions based on spur of the moment desires without thinking about any long term implications. Naturally, he’s apologetic and supremely sorry when he gets caught or something bad happens to himself or others as a result of his actions, but he doesn’t seem to learn very quickly from these lessons and must repeat them many, many times before he finally “gets it.” Similarly, Geppetto isn’t 100% of the time a kindly old man; he too has his moments of anger with Pinocchio’s behavior. Even the Blue Fairy isn’t as kindly and beneficent as Disney made her…she too isn’t above pulling a nasty prank or two to show Pinnochio the error of his ways. I think these personality elements resonate with young readers…I think we can all admit that most children push the limits, do things they know they are not supposed to and generally find disobeying to be more fun than obeying (at least at times)…and in that way, Pinocchio is the embodiment childhood. He does all the things they’ve been told not to and reaps the rewards or pays the price for it! I think that is what makes this a timeless classic that has been loved for generations. I think that there are a lot of dark humor and plot points in this book (the blue fairy’s death, Geppetto’s getting lost as sea, the attempted assassination of Pinocchio, etc.), that it’s effective and riveting (especially for young readers) and enjoyable…it also makes his final transformation into a real boy all the more rewarding when it finally happens. I have to admit I enjoyed reading this far more than ever enjoyed watching the Disney cartoon version. Overall, it’s a rich, dark, and sometimes humorous tale that is illustrated wonderfully in this version by Gus Grimly. I would recommend it for anyone who enjoys reading the non-sanitized versions of Grimm’s Fairy Tales (and other similar stories). It has all the familiar plot elements of the one we grew up watching (in America, at least) but is a much darker story than Disney gave us. I give it 4 stars and I would definitely buy it for my permanent library.
  • (1/5)
    It is always a dicey affair to criticise a popular book: and when it is an acknowledged classic for children, it is even more dangerous. So I agonised a lot over my impressions of Pinocchio: Is it only a matter of personal taste? Am I missing something? Should I rethink my rating based on learned opinions spanning more than a century? In the end, I decided to go with my original evaluation.

    This is one of those stories you read and love in comics format or abridged versions before you come into contact with the original. What usually happens is that, those adaptations modify and trim the original tale to suit the sensibilities of the current generation. I also read Pinocchio as a comic book and loved it; however, on reading the original, I find that many of the "creepier" elements had been edited out of that version.

    I do not love moral fables for children. The type of story where, for example, the disobedient little lamb is gobbled up by the big, bad wolf, crying with his last breath: "Oh! If I had only listened to my mother!" is terrifying to kids (I speak from personal experience). They are equivalent to the posters of hell which some people were fond of hanging in their drawing rooms during my childhood. In the nineteenth century, when Collodi wrote his story, one can easily understand that this must have been an accepted method of keeping children in line: by frightening them out of their wits. I do not think the modern world will look kindly on that method.

    It is not that creepiness by itself is bad. Many fairy tales are frightening, with their suggestions of cannibalism, patricide, incest, torture etc. The difference between the fairy tale and the moral fable is that the fairy tale is a live entity, growing, shrinking and changing shape while travelling from mouth to mouth; the messages are subliminal, interacting with the child's subconscious. The moral fable on the other hand, is "purposeful" - there is a message ("if you do this, then this will happen!") which the author wants to drum into the child's head, usually by using fear as a tool. It is the narrative equivalent of the schoolmaster's swishing cane.

    Collodi's story, taken by itself, has many wonderful elements of dark fantasy (the huge Dogfish which swallows ships whole, the snake with a tail which smokes like a chimney, the little white man who converts boys to donkeys and sells them...) and could have made a wonderful fairy tale. However, the moralising on almost every page of what happens to bad boys who do not obey their parents, do not study and tell lies takes all the fun out of it: the voice of the narrator, coming out through various parental figures, becomes sickening. What crowned the whole thing for me was the death of poor Candlewick, Pinocchio's friend, after short life of back-breaking labour as a donkey. Yuck!. I was happy when the story ended.

    I would recommend reading it to children with the morality edited out: but why bother? There are better books out there. Or let them read it as a comic book, or watch the Disney movie.
  • (5/5)
    PINOCCHIO. THE ADVENTURES OF A MARIONETTE (2013 : 220 PAGES. LARGE PRINT FOR EASY READING - Original edition)Anyone interested in the role of education and a child’s place in society will be well-served to read or reread this timeless classic. As Umberto Eco has argued, although it is written in simple language, Pinocchio is not a simple book. It doesn’t limit itself to one simple, basic moral, but rather deals with many meanings and it is, thus, not only moving and beautiful, but profoundly educational.WHO IS PINOCCHIO?Pinocchio is a fictional character and the main protagonist of the children's novel The Adventures of Pinocchio (1883), by the Italian writer Carlo Collodi. Carved by a woodcarver named Geppetto in a small Italian village, he was created as a wooden puppet, but dreamed of becoming a real boy. Pinocchio refers to a character who is prone to telling lies and fabricating stories for various reasons. Pinocchio learns to control his impulsive personality and shows moral and intellectual growth. Collodi's "Pinocchio", as a fable, doesn’t impose answers on the readers, but rather poses stimulating questions. Non simply a children’s book, "Pinocchio" helps readers to reflect on issues of freedom vs. authoritarianism, what system of education is most effective, how young people can be helped to develop their vocations, and how should we approach adolescent development. Pinocchio has become an icon of modern culture, and one of the most re-imagined characters in the pantheon of children's literature. Pinocchio is known for having a nose that becomes longer when he tells lies (chapter 3). His clothes are made of flowered paper, his shoes are made of wood and his hat is made of bread. Aspects of Pinocchio's character vary, depending on the interpretation, although basic aspects such as his creation as a puppet by Geppetto and the size of his nose changing due to his lies or stress remain present across the various formats. In Collodi's original tale, "Le Avventure di Pinocchio" (1883), Pinocchio, as a child, exhibits obnoxious, bratty, and selfish traits, which will eventually change after being exposed to his father Geppetto's love, the Blue Fairy's benevolent guidance, public education and, most of all, to his direct experience of good and evil.“It must be said that, though written in the nineteenth century, the original children's novel, "Pinocchio", remains as readable as if it had been written in our century, so limpid and simple in its prose, and so musical in its simplicity.” (Umberto Eco)
  • (2/5)
    This is book is awesome. In the first 13 pages, Gepetto gets into a fist fight, Pinocchio gets Gepetto sent to prison, then he kills Jiminy Cricket with a hammer. This is great!As you can tell this book is far removed from the Disney version. Everybody's a jerk. Must be an Italian thing. I'm not sure who this book was audienced to -- little boys maybe? -- but the language still holds up. The culture does not. It's super easy to read, but the plot is not terribly coherent, and there's no unifying force. It seems like 65% of the book is just Pinocchio being bad, then, when he realizes he's about to get burnt or hanged or shot, he suddenly cries, "oh no, I'll never be bad again", and he is saved. Then he goes and does it again. Reminds me of the American prison system. Must be required reading for lawyers. The storytelling is terribly unpolished and jagged. There's no unifying story, just Pinocchio running around getting into trouble. After about halfway, it starts getting obnoxious, because he has no real goal. He has nothing he wants.I'm really on the fence about the value of this book in terms of today. Would I recommend it for anyone? Would they get anything out of it? Maybe, since the chapters are short and the characters dynamic, they'd get more out of it than I did.
  • (5/5)
    I read the ebook version from the library. This story was so cute and so well written. It reminded me of my childhood when I'd watch the movie and listen to my little record of the soundtrack. It has such a good moral lesson too.
  • (3/5)
    I don't think I even meant to download the ebook for Pinocchio -- it's not something I had on my mental list of books I intended to read. I don't know who translated the version I read, but it was easy enough to read. It reads like quite a light story, but Pinocchio isn't a terribly nice character. He's, well. A boy. A little boy, selfish and without much of a moral compass to call his own. I couldn't really root for him, to be honest, and his moments of compassion and caring for other people seemed just that... moments. I guess he reminded me of Peter Pan a little, in his selfishness and his boyishness. I can imagine a little boy really being somewhat like Pinocchio, but that doesn't mean I have to like it. If the book had been longer or less lightly written, I daresay I wouldn't have liked it at all.

    I was glad for the lack of constant overt moralising, like Jiminy in the Disney adaptation. There is a little, of course, but it doesn't really seem to sink into Pinocchio's head... the ending is a little saccharine-sweet, with Gepetto being made young again and Pinocchio turning into a real boy through reforming and so on, but it isn't too irritating.

    It was enjoyable as a quick read, as a break from doing essays, and I wonder if I'd have liked it more if I'd read it as a kid, but it didn't really arouse strong feelings either way.
  • (5/5)
    Greg Hildebrandt's tremendous illustrations accompany this edition of the children's classic, and the art brings the wooden boy to life on its own. There are twenty-one full color paintings with colors that simply dash out at you. This volume is the Little Unicorn edition, which means the original story is abridged so the illustrations can take center stage. Simply wonderful. This book begs for a cold cloudless night and a hot steaming mug of hot cocoa.

    Sized for small hands

    Book Season = Winter
  • (2/5)
    On the whole, this has to be the least satisfying classic I've read over the past couple of months. I genuinely disliked nearly every character in the book, with special emphasis on Pinocchio. I was rooting for the fireplace rather than the real boy angle.
  • (4/5)
    The book is better than the Disney movie -- which was still a good movie. I've also seen a wonderful theatrical production at the Children's Theatre Company in Minneapolis. Another one I ought to reread.
  • (5/5)
    From the moment Geppetto first carves him out of a piece of wood, the puppet Pinocchio is a trouble-maker. He doesn’t want to go to school or learn a trade. It is only after many zany misadventures—involving trickster cats, giant snails, and a cricket whom Pinocchio attacks with a wooden mallet—that Pinocchio begins to realize that being a puppet isn’t enough.The Adventures of Pinocchio is an unforgettable classic. Collodi's novel includes a rich commentary on growing-up and taking responsibility completely overlooked in the Disney story with which most of us are more familiar. In his slow quest to become a real boy, the puppet Pinocchio learns what it truly means to be free.
  • (4/5)
    As everyone knows, Pinocchio is a Liar who is penalized (or possibly rewarded in length of nose) every time he lies, very like the current US President, whose silk tie grows longer with every lie.Here's another, my second comparison to our President Pinocchio, Liar-in-Chief. The carpenter who fashioned Pinocchio, Gepetto, forgot to give him ears; nor does the President listen to anyone. Comparison three: neither the President nor Pinocchio reads, but Pinocchio sacrifices to purchase an Abecedario in order to learn to read. And in fact, Pinocchio admires books, later becomes the best student in his class, so good that he will be turned into a real human boy in one day, but a friend leads him away to where there are no books or schools, and Pinocchio and his friend first grow donkey's ears, and eventually get all grey skins, asses. Pinocchio becomes a donkey in a circus.(Ch.11)Comparison four: both Pin and Prez are puppets, who have torn away from their puppeteers, Gepetto and Putin. Or maybe only Pinocchio has left his puppeteer.Comparison five: at one point, Pinocchio limps, and of course the Trumpster has trouble with steps, tries grabbing his wife's hand, who doesn't want to support a 300 lb man going down steps.For comparison six, see my penulitimate paragraph below.The first carpenter who started carving the wood into the puppet was called Maestro Ciliegia/ Cherry because his nose was red as one. As in Dr Seuss, several characters share nasal distinctions.Pinocchio is convinced to bury his five pieces of gold into the Campo dei miracoli, to result in thousands the next day according to a Limping Wolf and a Blind Cat (both faked, though later in the story they become what they faked). When he tries to dig up his treasure, thieves approach and he runs and runs. Several references to thieves, "ceffi" or "ladri."Towards the end Pinocchio turns back from an over-worked donkey to himself, when he swims in the sea and is swallowed by a (whale?) shark, where he finds his Gepetto, old and frail. He escapes with his babbo, who cannot swim, and carries him on his back to shore. When he needs money in Ch 9 (2/3 the way through), he doesn't dare ask for charity, because his Dad Gepetto always said only two kinds of people have the right to beg charity: "i vecchi e i malatti," the old and the sick (p. 61, Aschehoug, 1972). So Collodi in the 19C moralizes directly, didactically.His book ends with Pinocchio turning from a wooden puppet into a real boy, and his babbo is healed, through Pinocchio's reform: Babbo tells him, "When bad boys become good, they give an entirely new and joyful aspect to their house, their entire family." (p.96) Would that the Prez had learned this from his Dad.I recall thinking it has fairly small vocabulary, but it's much longer than Seuss. Theodor Seuss Geisel lived in my hometown of Springfield, MA, on Mulberry St, and set a goal of books with 225-240 different words. Turns out, Easy Reader (Mondadori) edition sorts Pinocchio under 1200 word vocabulary as Collodi (Carlo Lorenzini) wrote it.
  • (4/5)
    I really enjoyed reading this to my daughter, it was the first time for both of us. Yes, there is a talking cricket, but thankfully his name is not Jiminy. The Blue Fairy has a very prominent role in the original story, she is whimsical, complex character.

    This edition, in particular, is utterly enchanting. The illustrations by Italian illustrator Roberto Innocenti are beautiful.

    I personally believe that children should not only be exposed to sugar-coated stories, so we always aim to read fairy tales in their original form. Pinocchio was no exception, and this was a delightful read.
  • (4/5)
    Pinocchio! (said with an Italian accent and lots of hand waiving). It is considered a "novel of education", a fun childrens story with values communicated through allegory. The values are very "middle class" as Italy became a nation-state in the 19th century: do not follow schemes of the fox and cat to get rich (ie. thieving upper class) but instead work honestly for your money; get an education so you are not treated like an ass (mule working class). Like the "Decameron", it follows the Florentine, Italy tradition of folk novella's -- like a hybred of the "Decameron", "Alice in Wonderland" and "Mother Goose". Disney made a film in 1940 that is considered a masterpiece of animation and is part of the National Film Registery, although only loosely based on the novel, the image of "Jiminy Cricket" and "Blue Fairy" are now a part of modern mythology.
  • (3/5)
    A little inaccessible for children. I think it has become a children's story over the years, rather than a moral tale for adults.
  • (4/5)
    Enjoyable, if a little repetitive. It's hard to read it through anything other than the Disney version, but it is reasonably different--including a Pinocchio who is meaner and more problem ridden (e.g., within the first few pages he hits the cricket with a hammer), a cat/wolf that are more persistent and interesting than the Disney ones, and an even more moving ending about how Pinocchio finally becomes a boy.
  • (4/5)
    Although it is an old story, it still catching and a good read. I sometimes had some problems, since some of the sentences had a (to me) strange structure, but all in all I had no problems reading the book.Maybe not for smaller children (in newer edition it should be better), but for everyone else this is a nice book, especially with the illustrations, that run along nicely with the story.
  • (5/5)
    Great translation of a wonderful story that is as bleak as it is amazing! Who says fairy tales cannot be brutal? Grimm right...
  • (5/5)
    This is among the more existential works in children's literature, and should make us all reconsider what children's literature can be. I was turned on to reading the Collodi version by Auster's analysis of it in The Invention of Solitude.
  • (5/5)
    Reason for Reading: Read aloud to the ds. This is actually my third attempt at reading this book to him. Pinocchio is one of my favourite children's classics. The first time was when he was five and was my edition that I had read, an old Rainbow Classics, but I think he was just too young. The second time, he was older and at that time I had a different edition, don't remember which, but it was an awful translation and we gave that up as well. So my hopes of reading him Pinocchio were put on the shelf until I saw this edition, which noted it was a brand new translation and I was taken right away with the collaged/mixed media artwork which I used to dabble in myself.Starting with the art, the book is beautiful. I love this collage, mixed media art style and each page was a visual delight to me and my son, who has seen me dabbling in the art myself. An extremely gorgeous book. A square, softcover with french flaps make for easy handling and browsing. Ds would often pick the book up between reads and just look at the pictures. There's no need to give a summary, I think everyone is acquainted with the story of the wooden puppet who wants to become a real boy. But if you've only been exposed to the Disney version, then just let me tell you that you do not really know the true story of Pinocchio, which is rather moralistic in teaching boys to be good boys and quite violent along way. One part that always makes me smile (because I hate Disney's Jiminy Cricket character) is that in the book when Pinocchio meets the cricket (no name, btw) who moralizes with him to annoyance is that Pinocchio's final response is to pick up a mallet and throw it at him, squashing the irritating bug against the wall. LOL. The cricket's ghost does return to annoy Pinocchio some more. DS thoroughly enjoyed the story as he wasn't familiar with it. He saw the Disney movie as a little kid but it had too much slow singing in it so he didn't like it, or pay much attention to it. He loved when anyone got what they deserved, even Pinocchio, and he found it fun when he could see it coming. The whole story is a lot of fun. With the modern translation and the new illustrations, this edition is entirely whimsical and doesn't come off as moralistic as earlier translations I've read do. Oh, it hasn't been left out, but Pinocchio is such a rude, naughty boy that he needs to be taught a lesson and eventually even he knows when he is doing the wrong thing. I highly recommend this translation, especially for reading aloud.
  • (5/5)
    I first wanted to read Pinocchio after seeing the 1970’s Italian animated movie A Puppet Named Pinocchio. It was much more faithful to the book than the Disney movie we are all most familiar with, much darker than what Disney showed me (not that I'm dumping on Disney's classic movie).I think it's safe to say that everyone is familiar with Pinocchio: Gepetto, an old wood-carver creates a puppet that is alive. Pinocchio (which, the book explains, stands for ‘pine cone’) is a willful, mischievous and naughty child, but he has a good heart and wants to become a real boy.His adventures are varied and always interesting and surprisingly dark. Pinocchio is a true a children’s book. While Disney was very good at giving parents what they think their children want: colorful characters, singing, magic and a puppet that was a clean-cut all-American boy. Carlo Collodi gives kids what they really want: very scary, life-threatening situations, shady characters and a puppet who starts off as a very bad and selfish boy. There are important lessons to be learned here and it is the journey that does the teaching. Though the ending is the same, in the book the reward feels more genuine and deserved rather than saccharine.As an adult reader, I did have a number of issues with the book. It was originally written as a series of short stories, published in a children's newspaper. It might be better to think of them as 'episodes'. There's a certain formula that many of the chapters follow: This time, Pinocchio has learned his lesson. Then an opportunity comes up. Pinocchio follows it. A character (often an animal) will appear and warn Pinocchio. He ignores the advice and trouble ensues. Pinocchio doesn't seem to grow as a character. Also from time-to-time, the book will stop to summarize everything that has happened before. As a result the 'chapters' tend to feel repetitive after a while. It also makes the book feel overly preachy (though I suppose that was part of the point of the book).However, I do remember reading and loving the book as a child. I did notice some of those issues even then, but they don't drag the book down. I think more kids should read the book today. Parents will feel hesitant because of the book's at times unrelentingly dark tone, but realistically, that helps draw the reader in. While following Pinocchio on his scary adventures, they will also learn to respect their parents, not to take what they have for granted and the value of both a good education and hard work. Not a bad thing for kids to read if you don't want them to turn in to donkeys.
  • (2/5)
    This is a classically Grimm-violent story. It's like a bunch of little vignettes, really. And pleasantly bizarro, just as a kid's tale should be. I like that it opens with a talking piece of wood. No explanations necessary, really. There's just this log that is sentient. Whatevs, am I right?
  • (4/5)
    The NYRB's translation of Collodi's Pinocchio by Geoffrey Brock is wonderfully readable. Had it a few more illustrations, it would be a great gift for an elementary -- middle-school child or even better, a book to read to one. As most Americans, I knew Pinocchio from Disney's film, and the book is not nearly as distant from Disney as I thought it might be. Certainly, the adventures have been somewhat modified, and Disney's Pinocchio is more childlike than Collodi's scampish puppet, but both reveal the dark dangers of the world and the belief that a good heart will ultimately reveal humanity. Both Eco and West make much of the difference between Collodi's fairy with sky blue hair and Disney's blue fairy -- claiming that the former is far mysterious and representative of multiple aspects of the feminine -- I didn't find the gap between the two so wide. The book was originally published in serial episodes, and each adventure could easily be read as a bedtime story. For an adolescent or adult reader who has never read the original, this is a first-rate translation. It's a first-rate translation for children too, but it would be so much better with either the original illustrations or ones done particularly for this translation.Brock's translation is contemporary and humorous, as is Eco's preface. On the other hand, the afterword commentary by Rebecca West is somewhat clunky if informative. She basically summarizes the prevailing critical views of the book and discourses rather lengthily on the changes Disney made to the tale.
  • (3/5)
    [LT early reviewer - This review is of the NYRB advanced uncorrected proof of the 2008 Geoffrey Brock translation]It’s fun (and rare) to have the opportunity to read the original form of a story that has made the transition to folk tale. Most of western culture has grown up with this story in some form, but most of us, I suspect, have never read (or even is aware of) the original novel by Carlo Collodi. This alone is enough reason to read this short book.I’m a bit hesitant to ‘review’ Collodi’s work, as it has been reviewed, revered, critiqued, and studied for 100 years. It’s also difficult to critique a translation if one is not familiar with the original language version, or with other translations. Even so, I offer my comments as one new to the work.First, the translation: Being an advanced proof, I don’t have access to any introductory comments by the translator, and don’t know if any will appear in the final published edition. Brock seems to have tried to present a modern English translation that uses everyday American English for Pinocchio and his acquaintances in their speech. And, when he succeeds in this, he presents a very readable and enjoyable Pinocchio. He also seems to have decided to leave the narrator’s voice in the Victorian era – a bit formal and stilted sounding to the modern American ear, with a mix of familiar and not so familiar expressions and vocabulary. This has the effect of giving the reader a feel for the work as it was originally written – Collodi’s voice, perhaps? I found the combination of these two approaches to work surprisingly well. Pinocchio and his acquaintances seem accessible (familiar, even) to the reader, while the ‘folk tale’ feel of the story is preserved. My only complaint about the translation is that Brock doesn’t seem to consistently maintain the modern American English ‘voice’ in the spoken parts. For example, most of the time, these characters use common contractions (I’m, I’ll, let’s, etc.) but occasionally, Brock has them speaking in a more stilted, contraction-free ‘voice’. The change can be jarring. Pinocchio’s schoolmate Eugenio says “Oh Mother – I am dying”. On the same page, Pinocchio says “I’m too stubborn” and “I’ve never had fifteen minutes of peace”. The difference seems off. This may seem like a minor criticism, but when the narrator sounds like an ancient storyteller, the inconsistent voice of characters seems to be lost between the two styles.Now, about Collodi’s story itself. I know this is a classic, beloved by millions for a century, but I found the story a bit hard to stay with. Yes, I love the overall plot and many of the incidents in the story, but Collodi seems to use unnecessarily wild and incredible constructions to explain why (or why not) certain events happened as they do. They often sound made up on the spot. This may be somewhat the result of the original serialized form – perhaps Collodi ended one episode, and then, upon writing the following episode(s), had to construct a way to explain or avoid inconsistencies. In any case, it leads to some odd bits interjected into an otherwise fun tale.Overall, worth the read for anyone interested in a peak at the origins of what has become part of our culture, and a good (but not great) translation. And I’d guess that the under 8 set would enjoy it regardless, though illustrations would be nice.Os.
  • (4/5)
    New version of a classic tale: I enjoyed the rereading of this story as much as my first reading as a child. Pinocchio is such a typical "bratty" little boy until he has his adventures, that it is a delight when he gets his wish to be a real boy.
  • (2/5)
    What a bratty whiner. I might be glad to have read it. But right now I'm just disappointed that Pinocchio was such a whiner.
  • (5/5)
    demented, wonderful, awesome art. Pinocchio is not the story that Disney told you. Chapter titles like "Pinocchio" gets hanged abound.
  • (5/5)
    It's about Pinocchio's life from when he was carved to when he becomes a real boy. However, this disobedient little puppet goes from misfortune to misfortune as he must decide between things like school and a puppet show and school and Playland. He is also hung from a tree, swallowed by a giant shark, robbed and chased by assassins. Thanks to help from his father and his friend the fairy he mends his ways and his dream comes true.Even though I grew up with the Disney movie version of Pinocchio I quite liked this novel version because the storyline is a little different and it gives a little more depth to Pinocchio's character. All in all a cute, rewarding story.