K-Gr 6-Most of the 12 fairy tales collected in this handsome, appealing volume are popular stories such as ``The Ugly Duckling,'' ``The Snow Queen,'' and ``Thumbelina,'' while some are less familiar: ``Grief,'' ``The Shadow,'' and ``It's Perfectly True.'' Philip has done an exemplary job in selection and translation; apart from an occasional jarring colloquialism, the narratives are done with care and respect for the language and tone of Andersen's tales. They retain the old-fashioned style of the original stories, and while the pace is measured, it does not lag. Brent's jewel-toned illustrations highlighted with gold leaf are eye-catching and lavish. They are set in abstract borders, and the pattern is repeated on the margins of the text pages. Each page is edged with gold leaf on the vertical sides, and the result is inviting and attractive. There is little overlap with Eric Blegvad's fine collection, Twelve Tales (McElderry, 1994). A lovely collaboration.-Donna L. Scanlon, Lancaster County Library, PA
nger for reading aloud. Glowingly illustrated by Isabelle Brent with lots of gold ornament and brilliant color, the 12 tales in this collection have been retold by Philip with immediacy and romance and a relaxed, conversational style. ("So he came back home, very put out, because he did so long for a real princess" ). Some of the stories are well known, including "The Ugly Duckling" and Philip's previously published version of "The Snow Queen" ; some will be new to most readers. The design will make this a popular gift book in bookstores, and storytellers in classrooms and libraries will also find it a dramatic collection. In his fine introduction Philip says that Andersen, the awkward, ugly duckling, became a magnificent swan when writing his fairy tales, that he combined the oral tradition with the intimate secrets of his life and thoughts.