HANSEL AND GRETEL by Rika Lesser

HANSEL AND GRETEL

adapted by & illustrated by
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KIRKUS REVIEW

An odd, static work for Zelinsky—composed of painterly, Old Master paintings. But these have the eerie, haunting quality of German Romanticism (or, sometimes, of Balthus)—with intimations of real malevolence in the mother who'd leave the children in the forest, truly Wagnerian visions of the forest at sundown and in moonlight, distorted perspectives and drastic foreshortenings in the scenes of imminent danger, and even a welcome-home from their father that works in the same gestural mode. The telling is also stern, unadorned. (Lesser's appended Note explains the omission of the familiar, "Nibble, nibble, little mouse / Who's that nibbling at my house?") For anyone who wants a cruel and joyous, dire and tender "Hansel and Gretel," this is it—with the screaming old witch visible through the door of the burning oven as Gretel slams it shut. But be warned: It's the story of good triumphing over evil, not a fairy tale with a happy ending.
Pub Date: Nov. 26th, 1984
ISBN: 978-0-525-46152-4
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Dutton
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15th, 1984




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