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Pig's Ploughman

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 9-12-- Although beautifully designed, with stories well told, this volume is misleading. It is not so much the story of the Pig's Ploughman, Lord of Winter, as it is the story of how the Celtic hero Finn McCool meets Kathleen Houlihan and how, together, they free the sea god Lyr from imprisonment. The monster described is the dragon guarding Lyr, not the Pig's Ploughman. Kathleen, although satisfyingly robust and a good balance for Finn, does not resemble the essentially passive women in most Celtic legends. Making traditional themes current is a time-honored aspect of storytelling, but until the new versions have been generally accepted, it can be argued that stories such as these belong in fiction, not in nonfiction collections where readers will assume they're getting traditional tales. The illustrations, handsome reproductions of artworks of varying media and eras, are beautiful. Again, however, readers are frequently mislead. Although the art is identified at the end of the book, the captions tell a different story: a William Blake painting of Nebuchadnezzar is identified as Houlihan in a mountain of filth, and a portrait identified as Finn shows a dark-haired man. Finn's very name means fair-haired. Some of the reproductions arecarefully coordinated with the text, but readers will make an odd connection when visualizing a Celtic hero battling an Oriental dragon. The characterizations are vivid and the adventures excitingly described in a vigorous, earthy style. There are, however, disconcerting shifts between that style and the thrilling music of mythic language. The mix makes for uneasy reading. --Cynthia Bishop, Onondaga County Public Library, Syracuse, NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781555462567
  • Publisher: Facts on File, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 1/1/1990
  • Series: Monsters of Mythology Series
  • Pages: 104
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 7.56 (w) x 9.55 (h) x 0.54 (d)

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