Thumbelina, Tiny Runaway Bride

Thumbelina, Tiny Runaway Bride

3.5 7
by Barbara Ensor
     
 

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HERE’S A CONTEMPORARY retelling of Andersen’s tale, revamped and fleshed out for today’s hip tweens. As she did in Cinderella (As If You Didn’t Already Know the Tale), Ensor re-imagines this classic, adding her own inimitable humor, flair, and stylish black-and-white silhouette spot illustrations. Thumbelina is that story most of us

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Overview

HERE’S A CONTEMPORARY retelling of Andersen’s tale, revamped and fleshed out for today’s hip tweens. As she did in Cinderella (As If You Didn’t Already Know the Tale), Ensor re-imagines this classic, adding her own inimitable humor, flair, and stylish black-and-white silhouette spot illustrations. Thumbelina is that story most of us can’t quite remember. Okay, sure, it’s about a tiny girl just the size of your thumb. But did you know that her troubles (or adventures, if you prefer) begin when she begs her mother to let her sleep outside on the porch? And that in no time she is engaged to a frog, and then a mole, and even receives a proposal from a miniature king?

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Review, The New York Times Book Review, June 15, 2008:
"Ensor revisits Andersen's tale and gives it a feminist touch . . . [and] her expressive collage cutouts have tons of charm."
Julie Just
Ensor revisits Andersen's tale and gives it a feminist touch…her expressive collage cutouts have tons of charm.
—The New York Times
School Library Journal

Gr 3-5

In this retelling, Hans Christian Andersen's original tale gets a little padding, some reinterpretation, and a format makeover into an early chapter book. The changes include expanding the role of Thumbelina's mother, making Thumbelina a bit more assertive, assigning the mouse a case of unrequited love, and adding an epilogue with an alternate ending. The basics, including Thumbelina's adventures and suitors, remain the same, even retaining language alluding to Denmark and references that create a historical context (e.g., mention of a dowry). Old-fashioned-looking black-and-white silhouettes break up the text. Neither the caliber of the writing nor the illustrations make this an essential purchase. The novel format may tempt fairy and princess fans who have moved on to longer fiction. Otherwise, libraries that own good versions of the tale, such as Lauren Mills's Thumbelina (Little, Brown, 2005), could pass on this one.-Faith Brautigam, Gail Borden Public Library, Elgin, IL

Kirkus Reviews
It all begins when a young woman decides she wants a baby enough to visit a witch. After paying a fee, Anne Marie goes home with a seed that quickly grows and blossoms to reveal a tiny girl. Thumbelina grows up sheltered, loved and well-cared for, but full of curiosity about the outside world. She records her frustrations in her diary and begs her mother to let her sleep outside. Finally her mother agrees, but after a night spent playing tag with fireflies, the slumbering Thumbelina is kidnapped by a frog looking for a daughter-in-law. She escapes this fate with some effort and embarks on her own journey down the unfamiliar river. This fleshed-out version of the Andersen tale is faithful to the original and has a charming, old-fashioned tone that lovers of fairy tales will undoubtedly embrace. Crisp silhouettes appear as spot illustrations and hand-lettered diary entries alternate with the conventional text throughout, lending an air of timelessness. (Fiction. 7-10)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780375839603
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
05/13/2008
Pages:
160
Product dimensions:
5.30(w) x 7.60(h) x 0.80(d)
Lexile:
890L (what's this?)
Age Range:
7 - 10 Years

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