Hidden Tales from Eastern Europe

Hidden Tales from Eastern Europe

by Antonia Barber, Paul Hess, Shena Guild
     
 

The walls of Eastern Europe have recently crumbled to reveal fascinating hidden cultures. To reflect this more open perspective, here is a collection of little-known folk tales from Poland, Slovakia, Russia, Croatia, Serbia, Slovenia and Romania. The seven elegantly told and beautifully illustrated tales create a timely collection to stimulate children's interest

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Overview

The walls of Eastern Europe have recently crumbled to reveal fascinating hidden cultures. To reflect this more open perspective, here is a collection of little-known folk tales from Poland, Slovakia, Russia, Croatia, Serbia, Slovenia and Romania. The seven elegantly told and beautifully illustrated tales create a timely collection to stimulate children's interest in their European neighbours.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Although no explanation is offered for the intriguing description of the contents as "hidden," this collection of seven Eastern European tales hasn't a clinker in the bunch. Traditional folktale elements-baffled kings and sweet-tempered maidens, shrewd husbands, bad dreams and pots of gold-appear here in unusual combinations. Standouts include the Slovakian fable "The Twelve Months," in which the months themselves, personified, come to the aid of a girl charged with impossible tasks; the Russian tale "The Chatterer," whose peasant hero figures out how to keep buried treasure secret despite his wife's big mouth; and the Romanian story "The Hundred Children," in which the father of an enormous clan outwits a gullible dragon and brings home a fortune. Hess (Hungry! Hungry! Hungry!) provides a single-page framed illustration and several vignettes for each story. His paintings emphasize the curve of the mossy forest floors and valleys where the plots unfold; they appear to be taking place on tiny planets. Some of the darkness of Grimm can be found here, too, but Hess never loses his sense of humor; a disturbing scene showing a dying king is tempered by the unexpectedly outsized ears of the royal Dalmatian, asleep in front of the throne. Writing with economy and restraint, Barber (Tales from Grimm) renders even miraculous moments simply, allowing the luster of these stories to shine forth. Ages 7-up. (Mar.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780711221185
Publisher:
Pgw
Publication date:
07/01/2003

Meet the Author

Paul Hess was born in Sydney, Australia, in 1961. He went to art college in Sydney and then worked as a graphic designer and Art Director for various companies both in Sydney and London from 1981 to 1991. He has worked as a freelance art director and illustrator since then. His books for Frances Lincoln are Death in a Nut, Nail Soup, Cow on the Roof, Dragon of Krakow, Hidden Tales from Eastern Europe, The King with Horse's Ears and The King and the Seed. He lives in Northumberland.

Antonia Barber's The Ghosts was shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal and adapted into the film The Amazing Mr. Blunden. The Mousehole Cat was a finalist for the Smarties Prize, winner of the 1990 British Book Award, and Commended for the 1991 Kate Greenaway Medal; it was later made into an animated film. She lives in Cornwall, U.K.

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