Kirkus Reviews QR Code
THE FAIRY TALE OF THE WORLD by Georg Büchner

THE FAIRY TALE OF THE WORLD

By Georg Büchner (Author) , Jürg Amann (Adaptor) , Käthi Bhend (Illustrator) , J. Alison James (Translator)

Age Range: 12 & up

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-7358-2316-7
Publisher: NorthSouth

Once there was a poor child who had no father or mother—they, like everyone in the world, had died. In search of heaven, the lonely boy traverses the cosmos, but all that symbolizes hope and possibility is found worthless and what seemed bright and beautiful reeks of despair. The Earth is an empty vessel, and the moon, sun and stars become metaphors for the desolation and disease of the universe. Based on a story found in Georg Büchner’s play Woyzeck, Amann’s bleak adaptation offers a conversation piece for sophisticated readers. Bhend’s lyrical artwork, done in colored pencil and mixed media, with its soft colors and texture, is a welcome contrast to the blackness of space and story. While her style seems simple, her cerebral images aptly represent the child’s complex, metaphysical journey and are appropriately ripe with symbols. It is she who leaves readers with the idea that peace and comfort may be possible; the barren, dark realm evoked by the words demands this mercy. This may be a good companion for those studying Büchner, but it's sure not for the usual picture-book audience. (Picture book. 12 & up)