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Charlotte's Web

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Charlotte’s Web, classic children’s novel by E.B. White, published in 1952, with illustrations by Garth Williams. The widely read tale takes place on a farm and concerns a pig named Wilbur and his devoted friend Charlotte, the spider who manages to save his life by writing about him in her web.

Summary

Eight-year-old Fern Arable is devastated when she hears that her father is going to kill the runt of his pig’s new litter. Persuading him that the piglet has a right to life and promising to look after it, she saves the animal and names him Wilbur. When Wilbur becomes too large, Fern is forced to sell him to her uncle, Homer Zuckerman, whose barn is filled with animals who shun the newcomer.

When Wilbur discovers that he will soon be slaughtered for Christmas dinner, he is horribly distraught. He sits in the corner of the barn crying, “I don’t want to die.” Charlotte—the hairy barn spider who lives in the rafters above his sty—decides to help him. With the assistance of a sneaky rat named Templeton and some of the other animals in the barn, she writes a message in her web: “Some Pig.” More strange messages appear in the web, sparking people from miles around to visit these “divine” manifestations and the pig that inspired them. Charlotte accompanies Wilbur to the county fair, where she spins her last note: “Humble.” Wilbur wins a special prize, and his survival is ensured.

It becomes apparent, however, that Charlotte is unwell. After laying hundreds of eggs, she is too weak to return to the Zuckerman’s farm. A saddened Wilbur takes the egg sac, leaving the dying Charlotte behind. Once home, he keeps a watchful eye on the eggs. Although most leave after hatching, three stay behind in the barn, and they and subsequent generations of Charlotte’s offspring comfort Wilbur for many years to come.

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Reviews & ratings

Summary:



4.64 / 5.0 based on 25 reviews

Reviews source: Reviews for Charlotte%27s+Web



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