Books by Sophie Herxheimer

AMAZONS! by Sally Pomme Clayton
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 1, 2009

An unfortunate mishmash of trivialized folktale, cutesy self-help and earnest advice. The author and illustrator take "Amazons" as a descriptor for heroic warrior-women from several cultures, and their methodology for encouraging girls to be Amazons includes such deep thoughts as "dare to dream" and "listen to your heart." The tales, which include "Queen of the Amazons," "Dragon Girl" (from China) "Durga Demon-Slayer" and "Hand of Glory" (from England), are written in a breezy style ("Captain Hercules"?) very much at odds with the blood, thunder and mystery of the stories. A page on making "Amazon accessories" includes such tidbits as, "customize a belt using a glue-gun, glitter and sequins." An "Amazon spell" based, it says, on a sixth-century hymn to Durga, is on a page of (unidentified) yoga poses. Herxheimer's illustrations are indeed dramatic and colorful, reveling in the gore of cutting off seven dragon heads as well as the jewels of the Egyptian warrior-princess Al-Datma. The tales are potent, but the package is not. (notes on stories, bibliography, glossary) (Folktales. 7-10)Read full book review >