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KING SOLOMON AND THE BEE by Dalia Hardof Renberg


adapted by Dalia Hardof Renberg & illustrated by Ruth Heller

Pub Date: June 30th, 1994
ISBN: 0-06-022899-7
Publisher: HarperCollins

After King Solomon forgives a bee for stinging him, it returns the favor by identifying the one real flower among a roomful of artificial ones—one of the riddles set the great king by the queen of Sheba. As Renberg explains in an excellent note, this story has Talmudic roots but is based on ``The Bee'' by Jewish poet Hayyim Nahman Bialik (``since this account doesn't appear in the Talmud, scholars are unclear whether Bialik based it on some other ancient folklore or whether he invented it''). Renberg's simplified retelling is straightforward and lively, a good match for Heller's almost raucously colorful illustrations: Her statuesque, classically draped figures, set amid a riot of blossoms in the opulently appointed palace, are the stuff of legend. (Folklore/Picture book. 4-8)