This sly Korean folktale features a family of moles: exquisite daughter (whose eyes sparkle in very unmolelike fashion),...

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THE MOLE'S DAUGHTER: An Adaptation or a Korean Folktale

This sly Korean folktale features a family of moles: exquisite daughter (whose eyes sparkle in very unmolelike fashion), protective mother, and proud father. As the daughter is the fairest of all creatures, her father wants her to marry the most respected and powerful of husbands. ""The sky is the limit,"" he intones and proceeds to offer his daughter to the heavens. But the sky tells him the sun is mightier still, so the father pleads his case there. The sun speaks of the cloud's ability to vanquish him, but when the father makes his offer to a rough-looking rain cloud (""Have you given any thought to the idea of matrimony?""), the cloud points to the wind; the wind motions toward an ancient stone wall that no breeze can topple. The daughter is scandalized: ""You would not seriously think of wedding me to an old dusty stone wall?"" Only when a mole, having tunneled under the wall, pops up, is the question of the most powerful is laid to rest, and wedding bells chime. Gukova's artwork is wonderfully vivid, with all the natural elements fancifully displaying their talents. The text delightfully undermines the father's hubris without making him look a fool, for his heart, if not his head, is in the right place.

Pub Date: May 1, 1998

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Annick/Firefly

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1998