PRINCESS FISHTAIL by Frances Minters


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Age Range: 4 - 8
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Familiar folktale elements are given a modern twist by the creators of Cinder-Elly (1994) and Sleepless Beauty (1996) in this original tale of a mermaid captivated by a handsome surfer. Told in slangy, rhyming vernacular, the storyline is traditional in its basic elements: when a human man falls into the sea attempting to get a glimpse of a beautiful mermaid, she helps him to shore, falls in love with him, agrees to trade her tail for legs, then wishes to be able to return to her family under the sea. But this Mer-Princess is more resourceful than the greedy troll with whom she’s made the trade anticipates; when the troll demands her voice in return for giving her back her tail, she takes swimming lessons at the Y and learns how to scuba-dive in order to visit her family. The colorful, splashy illustrations are outlined in scratchy, thin black lines, and the spreads are full of humorous asides and details in addition to the text: clams, jellyfish, seabirds, and even some aliens contribute remarks as they seem to watch the story unfold from the sides of the pages. This fish tale with well-known antecedents is refreshingly contemporary in its tone and look. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2002
ISBN: 0-670-03529-7
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Viking
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 2002


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