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Flowers & Fables
     

Flowers & Fables

by John Gruen, Rafal Olbinski (Illustrator)
 
Shards of mirror turn to violets, angry snowflakes fall, a boy becomes a sweet pea and then a butterfly in Flowers and Fables, fourteen tales from John Gruen that resonate like "a sweet, sad melody." The haunting paintings by surrealist Rafal Olbinski suggest further unfoldings of the fables. Full color.

Overview

Shards of mirror turn to violets, angry snowflakes fall, a boy becomes a sweet pea and then a butterfly in Flowers and Fables, fourteen tales from John Gruen that resonate like "a sweet, sad melody." The haunting paintings by surrealist Rafal Olbinski suggest further unfoldings of the fables. Full color.

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 5 Up-Fourteen short, lyrical fables in which the subjects are bewitched by or transformed into flowers or other shapes in nature. A boy playing at changing butterflies into sweet peas, and sweet peas into butterflies suddenly finds himself turned into a butterfly and flitters off toward the moon. A princess covered by poppy petals fades into a memory; some travelers stopping by a brook are turned into tall cypress trees. Haunting, surrealistic paintings complement the esoteric pieces. Although youngsters will be able to read the selections, they are decidedly adult in tone, and have limited appeal.-Sally R. Dow, Ossining Public Library, NY
Kirkus Reviews
This elegant volume is a fine diversion for teenagers and even older readers, but the peculiar nature of the tales renders it less suitable for a picture-book audience.

In each of 14 spreads, a species of flower figures into a brief story and illustration. The text of each fable, in small type with justified margins and exaggerated leading between the lines, aids in conveying their overall tone—mysterious, dark, full of pronouncements, e.g., "Now the mimosa shall weep her golden tears in an old woman's hand." Scents have sound; a man dies of sadness before he finds the maiden of whom he has dreamed and who springs to life from his tears. In fact, a lot of folks die in the course of these moody fables. The accomplished, mesmerizing pictures recall Magritte and Dalí: a sliver of moon imprisoned in a bird cage; an eye on the back of a hand; wild roots and branches grasping and snaring. The book may be excessively poetic or just excessively indulgent, but it leaves logic too far behind for most children.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780152013110
Publisher:
Creative Company, The
Publication date:
08/31/1996
Series:
Creative Editions Series
Pages:
40
Product dimensions:
7.75(w) x 10.75(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
10 Years

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