Sleeping Bobby

Sleeping Bobby

by Mary Pope Osborne, Will Osborne, Giselle Potter
     
 

A beautiful baby, a sinister spell, a pricked finger, a hundred-year sleep, a true-love wake-up kiss.
We all know the story of Sleeping Beauty, but not the one that Will and Mary Pope Osborne tell — with a handsome prince named Bob, a feisty princess who wakes him from his enchanted slumber, and charming artwork from acclaimed illustrator Giselle Potter.

Overview

A beautiful baby, a sinister spell, a pricked finger, a hundred-year sleep, a true-love wake-up kiss.
We all know the story of Sleeping Beauty, but not the one that Will and Mary Pope Osborne tell — with a handsome prince named Bob, a feisty princess who wakes him from his enchanted slumber, and charming artwork from acclaimed illustrator Giselle Potter. Here's a fresh, magical reworking of the classic fairy tale that's sure to have kids begging, "Read it again!"
As soon as he touched the wheel's spindle, a splinter pricked his finger.
"Ouch!" said Bob.
"Good night, Bobby," said the old woman.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The creators of Kate and the Beanstalk update "Sleeping Beauty" by casting Prince Bob in the lead. With that exception, this wittily told version adapts readily to the exchange of male and female roles. Prince Bob's birth is a joyous event, and the happy king and queen invite 12 Wise Women to bless their son: There are 13, "but since the queen had only enough good china to serve twelve, one had to be left out." After the uninvited guest declares that Bob will "prick his finger on a spindle" and die on his 18th birthday, another promises not death but instead a century-long nap. Despite his parents' attempts to banish all spinning wheels, Bob has "great curiosity and a taste for adventure," and gets lured to the dangerous instrument. Potter suspends the snoozing, sepia-tinted characters against an ethereal blue backdrop. Afterward, bachelorettes trade "rumors [of] a kind, clever, modest, and very handsome prince," and become tangled in the formidable palace hedge. Only one princess, with "a taste for adventure" like Bob's, beats the thorns ("If this Bob is all they say, it will take more than some shrubbery to keep me from meeting him"). The Osbornes' conversational prose lends itself to being read aloud, and Potter's mixed-media paintings suggest destined romance and humble magic between the well-matched couple. All ages. (Oct.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
By now, Sleeping Beauty is probably one of the most famous fairy tales in Western culture. It has also been the topic of much debate from feminists. But what if the roles were reversed? The Osborne's retelling of the classic Grimm Brothers' fairy tale is actually fairly close to the original story. The one change is that the slumbering royal child is now Prince Bobby, and the person who rescues him with a kiss is a "kind, clever, modest, and very lovely princess." While there are other fairy tale retellings that offer more uniqueness rather than simply switching roles, by keeping the basic tale the same, the Osbornes tale conveys that princesses need not always be rescued. Giselle Potter's illustrations fit the tale style as well. They show dress and setting typical of fairy tales, but have a bit of a cartoonish feel. 2005, Anne Schwartz, Ages 4 up.
—Amie Rose Rotruck
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-In the vein of Kate and the Beanstalk (2000) and The Brave Little Seamstress (2002, both S & S), the Osbornes' fairly faithful adaptation of the Grimm Brothers version of "Sleeping Beauty" is written in a breezy, readable style, and most details of the original story have been included. However, in place of the heroic prince who awakens the beautiful sleeping princess, a "kind, clever, modest, and very lovely princess" awakens sleeping Prince Bob. Potter's folk-style characters are dressed in Elizabethan garb with details such as puffed sleeves, high lace collars, and ruffs. The use of brown tones on blue backgrounds to indicate the sleeping household provides an interesting contrast. The dry wit of the text may be beyond the grasp of the youngest listeners, but everyone can appreciate the simplicity of the story and the humor in the detailed, mixed-media illustrations. As a read-aloud, this tale is sure to be a hit.-Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, OH Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A third from the duo of Osborne and Potter, this one is less a feminist remake than simply a character gender swap. When a long-awaited son, Bob, is finally born to the royal couple, 12 of the kingdom's 13 Wise Women are invited to the feast (there is a shortage of china). The spurned Wise Woman gives Bob the traditional gift of death by spindle prick, while the 12th lessens the curse to a 100-year sleep. The Grimms' tale continues. Then, a "kind, clever, modest, and very lovely princess" with "great curiosity and a taste for adventure" sets out to find her fortune and determines she will seek the mysterious sleeping prince. When she finally lays eyes on him, she finds him so handsome that she just has to kiss him, thus awakening him and sparking their instantaneous love for each other. Potter continues the style set by the two earlier books-flat gouache-and-watercolor artwork in earth tones. Absent of the plucky, personality-rich heroines in their previous two outings, this one is an uninspiring disappointment save for Potter's art. (Picture book. 4-8)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780689876684
Publisher:
Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Publication date:
09/28/2005
Pages:
40
Sales rank:
516,486
Product dimensions:
11.75(w) x 8.81(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Mary Pope Osborne is the award-winning author of many distinguished books for children and young adults, including the bestselling Magic Treehouse series; Favorite Medieval Tales, illustrated by Troy Howell; American Tall Tales, illustrated by Michael McCurdy; Rocking Horse Christmas, illustrated by Ned Bittinger; and Adaline Falling Star. The former president of the Author's Guild, she lives in New York City with her husband, Will.

Giselle Potter is the author and illustrator of The Year I Didn't Go to School, which is based upon her travels around Italy with her family's theater troupe at age seven. She is also the illustrator of The Brave Little Seamstress and Kate and the Beanstalk, both by Mary Pope Osborne, The Honest-to-Goodness Truth by Patricia C. McKissack, and Gabriella's Song by Candace Fleming. Ms. Potter lives in Rosendale, New York.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Goshen, Connecticut
Date of Birth:
May 20, 1949
Place of Birth:
Fort Sill, Oklahoma
Education:
B.A., University of North Carolina
Website:
http://www.marypopeosborne.com

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