Will Moses, the great-grandson of Grandma Moses, has illustrated this American classic with a liveliness that its creator might have appreciated. This conjuring tale is a Halloween must.
When Ichabod Crane becomes the new schoolmaster of Sleepy Hollow, he quickly and happily adjusts to the local ways. He delights in the bountiful dinners he's served when visiting the prosperous farms of the region; he enjoys the local yarns and scary legends that fill the firelit evenings of autumn; and he comes to love the idea of marrying Katrina Van Tassel and of one day owning her father's wealth and lands. There's one problem with his plans, though: Brom Bones, the local hero, who decided long ago to wed Katrina himself. And now, to his annoyance, this pasty-faced bookworm named Ichabod is making a serious bid. This droll tale of romantic rivalry climaxes with the appearance of the Headless Horseman. The spirited narration by Glenn Close, radiant illustrations by Robert Van Nutt, and original music by Tim Story capture all the wit, fun, and shivers of this early American tale. In 1988 the audio was honored with a Grammy nomination in the category of best recording for children.
The Author's Account of Himself
I am of this mind with Homer, that as the snaile that crept out of her shel was turned eftsoones into a Toad, and thereby was forced to make a stoole to sit on; so the traveller that stragleth from his owne country is in a short time transformed into so monstrous a shape that he is faine to alter his mansion with his manners and to live where he can, not where he would.
I was always fond of visiting new scenes and observing strange characters and manners. Even when a mere child I began my travels and made many tours of discovery into foreign parts and unknown regions of my native city; to the frequent alarm of my parents and the emolument of the town cryer. As I grew into boyhood I extended the range of my observations. My holy day afternoons were spent in rambles about the surrounding country. I made myself familiar with all its places famous in history or fable. I knew every spot where a murder or robbery had been committed or a ghost seen. I visited the neighbouring villages and added greatly to my stock of knowledge, by noting their habits and customs, and conversing with their sages and great men. I even journeyed one long summer's day to the summit of the most distant hill, from whence I stretched my eye over many a mile of terra incognita, and was astonished to find how vast a globe I inhabited.
This rambling propensity strengthened with my years. Books of voyages and travels became my passion, and in devouring their contents I neglected the regular exercises of the school. How wistfully would I wander about the pier heads in fine weather, and watch the parting ships, bound to distant climes. With what longing eyes would Igaze after their lessening sails, and waft myself in imagination to the ends of the earth.
Further reading and thinking, though they brought this vague inclination into more reasonable bounds, only served to make it more decided. I visited various parts of my own country, and had I been merely a lover of fine scenery, I should have felt little desire to seek elsewhere its gratification, for on no country have the charms of nature been more prodigally lavished. Her mighty lakes, like oceans of liquid silver; her mountains with their bright aerial tints; her valleys teeming with wild fertility; her tremendous cataracts thundering in their solitudes; her boundless plains waving with spontaneous verdure; her broad deep rivers, rolling in solemn silence to the ocean; her trackless forests, where vegetation puts forth all its magnificence; her skies kindling with the magic of summer clouds and glorious sunshine-no, never need an American look beyond his own country for the sublime and beautiful of natural scenery.
But Europe held forth the charms of storied and poetical association. There were to be seen the masterpieces of art, the refinements of highly cultivated society, the quaint peculiarities of ancient and local custom. My native country was full of youthful promise; Europe was rich in the accumulated treasures of age. Her very ruins told the history of times gone by, and every mouldering stone was a chronicle. I longed to wander over the scenes of renowned achievement-to tread as it were in the footsteps of antiquity-to loiter about the ruined castle-to meditate on the falling tower-to escape in short, from the commonplace realities of the present, and lose myself among the shadowy grandeurs of the past.
Washington Irving is considered by many to be the father of American literature. He died in 1859.
Michael Garland has made an indelible mark on the world of children's literature. His rich,colorful artwork captures the flavor of Washington Irving's classic The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, Elizabeth Friedrich's Leah's Pony, Corinne Demas Bliss's Electra and the Charlotte Russe, and Ann Tompert's Saint Patrick and Saint Nicholas.
Mr. Garland wrote and illustrated Angel Cat, Dinner at Magritte's, Circus Girl, and My Cousin Katie, which was named an ALA Booklist Editors' Choice and a NCSS-CBC Notable Childrens Trade Book in the field of social studies. One of his paintings from The Legend of Sleepy Hollow was included in the 1992 Society of Illustrators' Annual Show, and the entire book was selected for the organization's "Original Art of Children's Books" exhibit also in 1992.
Mr. Garland was awarded Certificates of Merit in the Society of Illustrators' Annual Shows from 1981-1988 and in 1990-1992. A native New Yorker, Michael Garland earned a bachelor of fine arts degree from the Pratt Institute in 1974. An avid landscape painter in his leisure time, Mr. Garland lives with his wife and three children in Patterson, New York, not far from the scene of Washington Irving's great American folktale.
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