THE IRISH PIPER by Jim Latimer

THE IRISH PIPER

by , illustrated by
Age Range: 6 - 10

KIRKUS REVIEW

 In a humorously laconic voice, Latimer puts a fresh spin on the ancient story of the Pied Piper. Opining that only an Irishman could have produced such spellbinding music, he updates the tale with delightfully mischievous anachronisms in the spirit of Lester's Brer Rabbit stories. Hamelin's mayor is now a woman; and although the aldermen know the old tale, they rather doubt its details and are sure they'll be able to cheat the Piper; as for the children, the council would be glad to be rid of the majority they consider brats. Latimer provides an alderman's musical daughter to go off with the Piper; fairly enough, they leave the few real brats and take the other children back to Ireland. The author's colorful language and pungent dialogue make this long picture book perfect for reading aloud, though it may take more than one sitting. O'Brien's detailed pen drawings, touched with subdued color, strike just the right note with their cozy medieval setting and subtle caricatures (including the rats, clothed like little burghers); they suit the story far better than more pretentious art like Le Cain's (1989). A fine author's note on the original story and his own speculations is appended. (Folklore/Picture book. 6-10)*justify no*

Pub Date: Sept. 30th, 1991
ISBN: 0-684-19130-X
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Scribner
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 1991




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