Ouch! A Tale from Grimm

Overview

This tale from Grimm — far less familiar than many of the others — has been given a brisk retelling by Natalie Babbitt and witty, spectacular, sumptuous pictures by Fred Marcellino. The story tells all about young Marco, who leads a charmed life if anyone ever did, starting off as nobody special and ending up king. Not that it's an easy path, the most dangerous part being an errand that takes him down into Hell. But thanks to the Devil's grandmother, as good an old girl as grandmothers everywhere, it all comes ...

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Overview

This tale from Grimm — far less familiar than many of the others — has been given a brisk retelling by Natalie Babbitt and witty, spectacular, sumptuous pictures by Fred Marcellino. The story tells all about young Marco, who leads a charmed life if anyone ever did, starting off as nobody special and ending up king. Not that it's an easy path, the most dangerous part being an errand that takes him down into Hell. But thanks to the Devil's grandmother, as good an old girl as grandmothers everywhere, it all comes right in the end.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Linnea Hendrickson
This superb retelling of the "The Devil with the Three Golden Hairs" from Grimm comes in a beautifully-designed package. The title information on the back of the dust jacket leaves unblemished the cover illustration of the devil admiring himself in a mirror. The page layouts are varied, ranging from full two-page spreads to pictures set within other pictures and interspersed with the text. Marcellino employs the same imaginative use of perspective that helped him win a Caldecott honor award for Puss and Boots. Although some of his views are at eye-level, he frequently alternates views from the ground looking up and from on high looking down in ways that stunningly accentuate the dynamics of the story. Babbitt's retelling simplifies the tale to make it suitable for a picture book without losing any of its impact, and Marcellino's pictures supply some of the missing information and also make clear the nature of the characters, especially the incredibly lucky and upright young Marco, the greedy and thoroughly unpleasant king, and the vain devil and his crafty and long-suffering grandmother. There are details in the pictures to fascinate children, such as the palace dogs, food, musical instruments, a star-studded ceiling, and the devil's fireplace shaped like the open mouth of a monster.
M.P. Dunleavy
Fred Marcellino's illustrations are fabulous, as always....Natalie Babbitt['s]...sense of funis still going strong after more than three decades in this field.
The New York Times Book Review
Kirkus Reviews
A fine, comfortable storyteller's voice meets up with sly and elegant illustrations in this tale from the Brothers Grimm. A baby boy who is "nobody special" is born with a crown-shaped birthmark, so the local fortune-teller predicts he will marry a princess. The king, father of a newborn daughter, bribes the parents to surrender their son, on the pretext that he will raise the boy. Instead, he puts him in a box and drops the box in a river. The baby is rescued and named Marco, and grows up tall and sweet and confident. Re-discovered by the king, he is saved by mischievous bandits, marries the princess, then is sent off by his new father-in-law mid-celebration to get three golden hairs off the devil's head. Now the story gets interesting, as Marco rides off to Hell, meets the devil's grandmother, and brings back the three hairsnthe "ouch!" of the titlenwhile also doing away with the king and relieving a bored ferryman of his duties. The illustrations are rich in Renaissance pattern in architecture and clothing, chivied by Marcellino's round-headed, puckish figures. Street, forest, and water vistas share the rosy golden light of fairy tale; the whole is quite satisfying.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062050663
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/1/1998
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Lexile: AD510L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.31 (d)

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