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As Luck Would Have It

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Overview

When Mother and Father Bear go off to look after Grandmother Bear, they leave twins Jonas and Juniper to take care of the house and field chores, warning them to beware of thieves. In this retelling of a classic story the award-winning Brothers San Souci (Robert and Daniel) take on the Brothers Grimm as Jonas and Juniper go through many misadventures at home before having an encounter with thieves who are no match for the simple, but good-hearted twins.

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Overview

When Mother and Father Bear go off to look after Grandmother Bear, they leave twins Jonas and Juniper to take care of the house and field chores, warning them to beware of thieves. In this retelling of a classic story the award-winning Brothers San Souci (Robert and Daniel) take on the Brothers Grimm as Jonas and Juniper go through many misadventures at home before having an encounter with thieves who are no match for the simple, but good-hearted twins.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
The Grimm Brothers' tale of Clever Elsie is set here on a farm, where twin anthropomorphic bears Jonas and Juniper are left in charge while their parents go to care for their sick grandmother. They are warned not to touch the money hidden in the cellar. Careless Jonas leaves the oxen alone plowing the field, where they make a mess. Equally thoughtless Juniper leaves the sausages cooking while she goes to draw some cider, and then leaves the keg open to chase the dog that has run away with the meat. Meanwhile, the cider has run all over the floor. To "tidy up," the witless girl dumps flour all over it. Meanwhile, Jonas tries to rescue the oxen that have fallen into the pond. They break the barrier open, causing the fields to flood. Silly Juniper then loses all their cheeses. When peddlers arrive selling pots, she lets them "touch" the money in the cellar, which of course they steal. How the foolish pair manage to catch the thieves and fix everything before their parents return makes for a humorous ending. The front-end pages show a street scene with the story title on a theater marquee, while the ones at the end show the characters performing on the stage. San Souci's watercolors with Prismacolor pencil highlights emphasize character and dramatic action. The naive youngsters are a contrast with the scurvy villains, fox and pig, while all are naturalistically attired in a country setting. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal

K-Gr 4

Lively, comical illustrations enhance the abundant droll humor in this noodle-head tale that plays off the Grimm Brothers' "Clever Elsie." It stars twin bear cubs who create one fiasco after another as they try to take care of their family farm while their parents are away. Brother Jonas tells the oxen to plow the field while he sleeps and then chastises them when they just wander around: "'What a mess!' he scolded. 'After lunch, you will have to plow the field all over again!'" When Sister Juniper forgets to close the spout to the cider barrel, she compounds the mess by trying to soak up the cider with flour. A sly fox, a pig with an eye patch, and a raccoon offer to sell Sister Juniper pots and pans, and she tells them to take the money they are owed from its hiding spot because her father told her not to touch the brick under which the money is hidden. When the thieves take all of it, the siblings follow to retrieve the family fortune, resulting in additional mishaps. The expressive, lucent watercolors highlighted with Prismacolor pencils portray the foolish escapades adeptly, and the anthropomorphized animal characters evocatively represent human characteristics and foibles. Although the text is a little lengthy, the waggish humor provides a good opportunity for a dramatic read-aloud.-Kirsten Cutler, Sonoma County Library, CA

Kirkus Reviews
The talented San Souci brothers take on the Brothers Grimm's "Clever Elsie," and the result is an entirely new story which, though it retains the folksy quality and quirky absurdity of the original, recasts the characters, adds a moral and tidies up the ambiguous ending. When twin bear cubs Jonas and Juniper are temporarily put in charge of the family farm, chaos quickly ensues. Many of the twins' problems-and, ironically, the solutions to those problems-come from taking their parents' directions too literally. For example, they are able to retrieve the family fortune only because, warned to guard the cottage door, they take it with them as they hunt down the thieves, and the door winds up knocking said thieves senseless. By story's end, the cubs have repaired all the damage they've caused and discovered in the process that things go much more smoothly when they put their heads together. Daniel San Souci's detailed watercolor illustrations contribute to the quaint feel of this effort and lend it a bit of welcome emotional depth as well. (Picture book. 5-10)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780874838336
  • Publisher: August House Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/25/2008
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD770L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.70 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 8, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Given To Me For An Honest Review As Luck Would Have It by Rober

    Given To Me For An Honest Review

    As Luck Would Have It by Robert & Daniel San Souci is such a fantastic child's book.  I really is a must read.  Once you begin it you will
     want to read it through and read it again.  It's a great book to read with your children or if your child is a reader they can read it theirself.
      This fantastic illustrated book will help you to teach your children the importance of paying attention, responsibility, following directions,
    keeping promises, working together and thinking before you act.  It shows some problems that can occur because of laziness, trusting
     strangers, rushing, daydreaming and not listening to your parents.  All of these lessons are taught in such a fun way.  The artwork is really
     good.  The colors are beautiful.  It is a real fun book to add to your child's bookshelf.  I enjoyed reading this book a lot.  I gave it 5 stars but
     it truly deserves more than that.  I highly recommend it to all.  I look forward to more from Robert and Daniel San Souci.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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