AUDUN AND HIS BEAR by Barbara--Retold by Schiller


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If you can keep your eyes from straying to the blocks of orange and mauve and walnut and gray that make a Mondrian of each page, sometimes with a diagonal thrust away from the text, you will find an appropriately spare, unpreachy account of resolution close-held, and integrity rewarded. Audun means to give the wonderful bear to King Sven of Denmark; he reaffirms his purpose to King Harald of Norway, Sven's enemy; rewarded by Sven for the bear, he bestows the most singular of his gifts, a golden bracelet, on Harald for letting him proceed in peace. With little overt action, this offers a scrupulous economy of word and gesture that is progressively insinuating as told here. But neither this nor the slightly younger, larger format Feagles Autun and the Bear is successfully pictorialized, although this--with its line drawings in the manner of medieval manuscripts--is closer to the spirit of the Icelandic story. If, again, you look at them closely, and as other than part of the decor.

Pub Date: Oct. 28th, 1968
Publisher: Holt, Rinehart & Winston