Beowulf

( 1 )

Overview

The acclaimed author and illustrator of SIR GAWAIN AND THE GREEN KNIGHT return with an exhilarating edition of Britain's oldest epic.

Long ago there was a Scandinavian warrior who fought three evils so powerful they could destroy whole kingdoms. Standing head and shoulders above his comrades, Beowulf single-handedly saves the land of the Danes from a merciless ogre named Grendel and then from his sea-hag mother. But it is his third terrible battle, with the death-dragon of the ...

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Beowulf

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Overview

The acclaimed author and illustrator of SIR GAWAIN AND THE GREEN KNIGHT return with an exhilarating edition of Britain's oldest epic.

Long ago there was a Scandinavian warrior who fought three evils so powerful they could destroy whole kingdoms. Standing head and shoulders above his comrades, Beowulf single-handedly saves the land of the Danes from a merciless ogre named Grendel and then from his sea-hag mother. But it is his third terrible battle, with the death-dragon of the deep, in which he truly meets his match. Lovers of heroes, monsters, and the drama of battle will find this retelling as enthralling as it is tragic.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Elizabeth Sulock
Morpurgo retells this classic epic in a narrative with parts: Beowulf and Grendel, The Monster of the Night, Beowulf and the Sea-Hag, as well as Beowulf and the Death-Dragon of the Deep. Though Morpurgo's text is missing an introduction and does not provide any historical background for young readers new to the subject matter, his prose is poetically constructed, making it mimetic of the story it is retelling. He consistently uses lengthy sentences and long paragraphs that recreate an Olde English feel for contemporary readers while striving to relate the connection between the readers' and the characters' worlds. "We know that each of us in our time, in our own way, must confront our fears and grapple with this monster of the night who, given a chance, would invade our homes, and even our hearts if he could." Foreman's detailed illustrations, which expand on the story's action, will surely appeal to fans of the fantasy genre, for each of the ninety-three pages is enchantingly decorated with a Celtic-style border. Overall this is a solid choice for introducing the classic story to young readers.
School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up-Morpurgo retells the classic story of the courageous young warrior from the land of Geats (now southern Sweden) who used his brute strength to save the neighboring Danes, then his own kinsmen, by slaying two horrible monsters, a sea serpent, and a massive dragon. The tale has been divided into three segments: the story of the monster Grendel's defeat; the slaying of his mother, the sea-hag; and the battle with the death dragon of the deep. Morpurgo has retold the tale in twisting, long-winded sentences that call to mind the way in which old epics were recounted by poets and bards. The text-filled pages framed with a Celtic-style border are broken up with small watercolor illustrations tucked here and there to help move things along. Many attractive full-page watercolor and pastel paintings illustrate important action-filled scenes-battles, a banquet, and Beowulf's funeral pyre. Morpurgo's short acknowledgment states that his inspiration for this version of the Old English classic came from the likes of Seamus Heaney, Rosemary Sutcliffe, and Kevin Crossley-Holland. The lack of introductory material and historical background is noticeable but overall this is a fine retelling.-Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, OH Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
"Hear, and listen well, my friends, and I will tell you a tale that has been told for a thousand years and more." It's not exactly a rarely told tale, either, though this complete rendition is distinguished by both handsome packaging and a prose narrative that artfully mixes alliterative language reminiscent of the original, with currently topical references to, for instance, Grendel's "endless terror raids," and the "holocaust at Heorot." Along with being printed on heavy stock and surrounded by braided borders, the text is paired to colorful scenes featuring a small human warrior squaring off with a succession of grimacing but not very frightening monsters in battles marked by but a few discreet splashes of blood. Morpurgo puts his finger on the story's enduring appeal-"we still fear the evil that stalks out there in the darkness . . . "-but offers a version unlikely to trouble the sleep of more sensitive readers or listeners. (Fiction. 10-12)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780763672973
  • Publisher: Candlewick Press
  • Publication date: 2/10/2015
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 160
  • Sales rank: 349,035
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Morpurgo, a recent British Children's Laureate, is the author of more than ninety books. He has been awarded the Smarties Book Prize, the Writers' Guild Award, and the Whitbread Children's Book Award. He lives in Devon, England.

Michael Foreman has written and illustrated numerous children's books and won several major awards, including the Kate Greenaway Medal twice. He lives in London.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 3, 2011

    Highly recommended, I give it two thumbs up!

    Whenever i think of a "page turner" of a book, i think of "Beowulf" as the perfect example. Many aspects of this book caught my attention, such as the Norse mythology blended with the imaginary monsters that everyone thinks of. Another aspect that i absolutely love about this book is that the protagonist is very flawed, although he has amazing strength, endurance, and speed, he is also very cocky, brash, and stubborn; this contrasts the modern hero's, being perfect and always making the right choice. This book actually got me teary-eyed at certain parts,(I won't ruin it for you) and pulled me in the moment i started reading it! I recommend it to all ages above 10, it's a pretty easy read and gets you antsy just thinking about reading it!

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