THE GOLD MINER’S DAUGHTER by Jackie Mims Hopkins


A Melodramatic Fairy Tale
by , illustrated by
Age Range: 7 - 9
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With folktale characters crowding the supporting cast, a sturdy heroine sets out to rustle up some gold to save her mine, house and hand from an oily banker in this elaborately staged—if not particularly well-knit—potboiler. Opening and closing in a lavishly appointed theatre before an all-animal audience, but otherwise set amidst dusty western hills, the play sends intrepid Gracie Pearl to town in a desperate search. There she finds that evil Bigglebottom, the banker, has seized the Golden Goose, tricked Rumpelstiltskin into a violent departure, sicced his trio of bears onto Goldilocks and for good measure tied three pigs to the railroad tracks for nonpayment of housing loans. None of these figures play any significant role, however; they just act as filler until, when the banker returns to claim his due, Gracie Pearl fights back so hard that the ground cracks and up comes a “black gold” gusher. Rebuses in the text provide visual cues for hissing and cheering, but Goodell’s elaborately detailed scenes will likely be a stronger draw for young readers. A good try nonetheless, and a natural for fans of the likes of Lisa Wheeler’s operetta Seadogs (2004), “staged” by Mark Siegel. (Picture book. 7-9)

Pub Date: March 1st, 2006
ISBN: 1-56145-362-5
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Peachtree
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1st, 2006


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