Kirkus Reviews QR Code


illustrated by Paul Galdone

Pub Date: March 18th, 1985
ISBN: 0395525993
Publisher: Clarion

A Galdone-illustrated folktale can be counted on for visual thrust and expression, but in recent years those Galdone trademarks have become perfunctory. Here, slapdash diagonals of heaped straw do for dynamic vitality, and the miller's daughter with her oversized sad eyes is unattractively and one-dimensionally formless. Without seeming to try, Galdone can point up his story with a subtle detail (the ring of keys in the king's hand) or a sideways glance (a gloating one from the dandily dressed dwarf on the title page; a sinister one from the jewelery-laden king). But this is a garish, overbearing sort of expressiveness. Certainly these pictures will project to storyhour crowds, but they are all blare and no echo.