THE STEADFAST TIN SOLDIER by Hans Christian Anderson
Kirkus Star


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A graceful, slightly abbreviated retelling that nicely captures Andersen's characteristic understated tone. Like the art for Marcellino's Puss in Boots (1990), these elegant compositions are in rich tones softened by the grain of the paper beneath; in contrast to the lively Puss (and in keeping with the story, since neither the soldier nor his beloved ever move on their own: they're at the mercy of fate, whether embodied in the wind, thoughtless children, or the jack-in-the-box goblin), the mood here is surface tranquillity--yet the tale's subtler nuances of endurance and loss shine forth with a quiet incandescence. Even movement is shown as if arrested, while the soldier--a thin, flat figure--remains wide-eyed and immobile throughout his adventures. Beautifully set in a wintry city of a hundred years ago (presumably Copenhagen): a handsomely designed book that respects the integrity of a favorite tale while giving it a flesh new interpretation.

Pub Date: Oct. 30th, 1992
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: HarperCollins