The wonderful warm-hearted story of...
The wonderful warm-hearted story of Mr Hoppy, Mrs Silver and the tortoise who brings them together.
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|Dimensions (cm) :||19.7 (H) x 12.7 (W) x 0.6 – 1.7 (D) x 0.21kg|
|Author :||Roald Dahl|
|Publisher :||Penguin Books|
Mr. Hoppy is a shy old man who lives alone in an apartment. For many years, he has been secretly in love with Mrs. Silver, a woman who lives below him. Mr. Hoppy frequently leans over his balcony and exchanges a polite conversation with Mrs. Silver, but he is too shy to disclose how he feels.
Mrs. Silver has a small pet tortoise, Alfie, whom she loves very much. One morning, Mrs. Silver mentions to Mr. Hoppy that even though she has had Alfie for many years, he weighs only 13 ounces, and she desires that he become a more attractive weight. This inspires Mr. Hoppy to claim that he can make tortoises grow bigger with a magic spell, which he tells Mrs. Silver will make Alfie grow if it is whispered into his ear three times a day. The title of the book comes from this spell, a simple invocation for a tortoise to grow, but with each word written backwards and some spaced unusually, such as "Esio Trot" (tortoise). Mrs. Silver is doubtful, but agrees to try.
Mr. Hoppy then buys many tortoises of various sizes from various pet shops, none that weigh less than 13 ounces. He houses them in a corral within the living room of his apartment, and with the help of a special long claw, can grab one tortoise from Mrs. Silver's balcony and replace it with a slightly larger one while she is away at work. All of the tortoises are similar enough in appearance to Alfie that Mrs. Silver never notices that an exchange has been made.
Due to the gradual nature of the change, Mrs. Silver does not notice that her pet tortoise is growing until he can no longer fit into his house. She exclaims to Mr. Hoppy that his spell has been effective, and verifies that Alfie now weighs 27 ounces. He asks to see and runs down the stairs to do so. Mrs. Silver embraces him in admiration of his spell and, emboldened by this gesture, Mr. Hoppy proposes to her, which she accepts, having been expecting that he would for some time. Mr. Hoppy secretly returns all the tortoises in his living room back to their respective pet shops, and Mr. Hoppy and Mrs. Silver are married a few weeks later.
It is then revealed that the real Alfie was among those returned to the pet stores. A short time later, he was bought by a young girl who kept him in her backyard where, 20 years later, by the time she has children of her own, Alfie has finally grown to 27 ounces.
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