THE SELFISH GIANT by Oscar Wilde

THE SELFISH GIANT

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Oscar Wilde wrote fairy tales for people of tender sensibility--those who find charm in the notion that birds would stop singing and trees forget to blossom because the children who used to play in their midst have been expelled. From that conceit the converse of course must follow: after winter has hung on and on in the giant's now-unfrequented garden, the children creep back in through a hole in the wall and climb up into the branches; and ""the trees were so glad to have the children back again that they. . . covered themselves with blossoms [while] the birds twittered in delight."" But if this strikes you as pathetic fallacy at its sappiest, you won't be touched to see the giant redeem himself by helping the tiniest of the children up into the one still-frosty, unoccupied tree--nor will you be moved to find him reunited with the child at last when the little one shows up, scarred with stigmata, to take the giant off to Paradise. Foreman's pale, tissue-soft fairyland is prettier by far than Kaj Beckman's garish setting for last year's The Happy Prince, but it won't help you relate to the story on Wilde's or any terms.

Pub Date: Sept. 21st, 1978
ISBN: 0750021276
Publisher: Methuen