Tarzan by Robert D. San Souci, Michael McCurdy |, Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Tarzan

Tarzan

by Robert D. San Souci, Michael McCurdy
     
 

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Edgar Rice Burroughs's story of the boy raised by apes now comes to life for a new generation of young readers in this exciting picture book. Tarzan, whose name means "whiteskin", is adopted by a tribe of apes, but as he grows older, he begins to realize that he is not like the others. When he explores the abandoned cabin of his dead parents, he discovers that he

Overview

Edgar Rice Burroughs's story of the boy raised by apes now comes to life for a new generation of young readers in this exciting picture book. Tarzan, whose name means "whiteskin", is adopted by a tribe of apes, but as he grows older, he begins to realize that he is not like the others. When he explores the abandoned cabin of his dead parents, he discovers that he is something called "human", a species that uses reason and intelligence. These special human qualities give him the power he needs to become ruler of the apes. But at the same time, he knows that.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Just in time for the release of Disney's animated feature Tarzan comes this sturdy picture-book introduction to the famous character created by Edgar Rice Burroughs. San Souci (The Faithful Friend) skillfully condenses a complex work of fiction into its key components. He skims over the drama preceding Tarzan's birth to Lord and Lady Greystoke, victims of a shipboard mutiny, and quickly plunges readers into the eventful circumstances of Tarzan's adoption by a young female ape. This treatment emphasizes Tarzan's success in teaching himself to read, and his use of intelligence along with physical strength, a combination that results in his becoming king of the apes. San Souci's expert pacing and sense for the essential story line give his adaptation an air of completeness. An endnote addresses literary and philosophical underpinnings of the story as well as the author's use of the source material; it may well inspire kids to one day seek out Burroughs's works. In his trademark style, McCurdy's (Iron Horses, reviewed above) crisp, full-color scratchboard compositions feature lush foliage and menacing wild animals--they bring the African jungle to life. Ages 5-9. (June) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature - Carol Lynch
Robert San Souci's childhood fascination with the Tarzan stories (originally written by Edgar Rice Burroughs) prompted him to reproduce a simpler version that could reach more children. The language he chooses is simple and straightforward; the story moves along at a good pace. The accompanying illustrations, executed using a scratch board technique, have a strong quality that matches well with the feeling of the text. Tarzan is presented as a hero. He is rescued from danger as an infant and raised by great apes. While he behaves as the apes do, Tarzan knows he is different from them, a fact confirmed when he finds books that illustrate the superiority of man over beasts. Tarzan educates himself using these books, eventually rising above all the others in the tribe. When he realizes that he needs to be among others like himself, he boldly leaves the jungle to seek out his destiny. With this version as a starting point, children may be inspired to read the original Tarzan stories. San Souci's retelling will definitely lead to some interesting conversations about the plausibility of such a story and the ways in which it contrasts with other retellings.
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 3-6 San Souci is to be admired for his many picture-book adaptations of folklore and legend; however, this retelling of Tarzan may be a misstep. Although it undoubtedly will reach commercial success, there are some serious questions about what has been done with this version. The fascinating wild-child aspect of the tale and the mystery and power of self-inflicted literacy are overwhelmed by the action-adventure moments. These scenes boil down to an awful lot of deaths in a few pages of text. "Mortal combat" and "the harsh justice of the jungle" are the operative terms. For adults who harbor nostalgia for the hokey Weissmuller-O'Sullivan films, reading aloud this version devoid of the humor, silliness, and twinge of romance found in the older celluloid version will be a rude awakening. No Cheetah, no UNGAWAH, no Jane here. But even purists and the not-so-squeamish may question this adaptation. In his excellent author's note, San Souci explains his childhood fondness for Tarzan and writes of Burroughs, "One of his greatest gifts is that of world-building: he details the histories, peoples, creatures, cities, languages, customs, artwork, games, and clothing of imaginary places so carefully that they ring true." This extreme condensation renders impossible any world-building or characterization. McCurdy's accomplished scratchboard and colored-pencil illustrations lend a Rockwell Kent-like, mythic quality to the work, but do little to fill in the blanks left by the severely abbreviated text. Sue Sherif, Fairbanks North Star Borough Public Library, AK Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780786803842
Publisher:
Disney-Hyperion
Publication date:
06/23/1999
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.87(w) x 11.37(h) x 0.37(d)
Lexile:
AD760L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 11 Years

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