THE EMPEROR’S NEW CLOTHES by Demi

THE EMPEROR’S NEW CLOTHES

Age Range: 7 - 10
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Demi sets her brief version of the Hans Christian Andersen chestnut in provincial Old China, suspending stout officials, gracefully gesturing onlookers, livestock, wild animals, and drifts of flowers, all drawn in ultra-fine detail, against backgrounds that seem limitlessly deep. The costumes are gorgeous, all vivid red, blue, and gold—even the Imperial undershorts, decorated with a sinuous dragon, are magnificent (children hoping for a naked emperor will be disappointed; steer them toward Anne Rockwell’s rendition of the tale). Though neither the verbal nor visual narrative is much enhanced by most of the five foldouts, they do make the book all the more grandly sumptuous. Demi scatters traditional Chinese symbols of purity, keyed in an afterword, throughout, and if the Emperor is left looking more annoyed than chastened by that pesky child’s eye-opening observation, it will still be plain to all readers that he understands who in his province is the biggest fool. (Picture book. 7-10)

Pub Date: May 1st, 2000
ISBN: 0-689-83068-8
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: McElderry
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 2000




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