Books by Stina Langlo Ørdal

PRINCESS AASTA by Stina Langlo Ørdal
ANIMALS
Released: Oct. 1, 2002

A whimsical British import tells the story of how a resourceful princess finds her own best friend. When Princess Aasta decides she wants a "big, cuddly bear friend," she takes out an ad in the paper. Scores of bears respond with photographs, and Aasta chooses a polar bear, Kvitebjørn, because he "had the friendliest eyes she had ever seen." Despite her father's reservations about the wisdom of "having a big, dangerous Ursus maritimus running about in his garden," he allows Kvitebjørn to stay because he sees how happy they are together. This ever-so-slight story is capped off by a trip to the North Pole to play, after which they return for supper. Appropriately enough, the illustrations make generous use of white space, with its few figures outlined in pen-and-ink and touched with a sparing use of color. The figures are naïvely drawn, rendered in a childlike way to suit this tale, which is the acme of child wish-fulfillment. Aasta herself has a big round head with spiky long hair, pink cheeks and nose, and a broad, gap-toothed smile, while Kvitebjørn is the essence of ursine cuddliness, his white fur touched with yellow highlights to add a friendly warmth. The text rollicks gently across the page, varying in size and placement in a way that resembles cut-out and pasted-down collage words—another childlike touch. This sweetly confident tale, adapted from a Norwegian folktale by newcomer Ørdal, makes for an offering that appeals directly and successfully to its audience. (Picture book. 3-6)Read full book review >