HARP O’GOLD by Teresa Bateman


An Original Tale
by & illustrated by
Age Range: 5 - 8
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Bateman reminds readers of the proverbial phrases, "Be careful what you wish for" and "Money can't buy happiness." Tom, a musician, spreads joy throughout the emerald land on his timeworn harp, but longs to become a wealthy minstrel. While in the woods contemplating his fate, he wonders out loud if perhaps his shabby old harp is the source of his problem, and wishes for a new one. Lo and behold, a small man dressed in green appears with a gold harp. Astonished at his good fortune, Tom quickly makes the trade and seals the deal. When his vintage instrument disappears with the mysterious little man, Tom feels a bit of a pull on his heartstrings, but is blinded by the glitter and deaf to the tinny sound of the new one. All the right doors open to the minstrel with the golden harp, but alas, Tom is not as happy as he thought he would be, since people are in awe of the harp instead of the music. Tom's ultimate dream comes true when he moves into the palace to perform exclusively for the king, but he soon realizes that although he lives like a prince, he has lost his freedom and is a palace prisoner. Naturally, all turns out right in the end, with Tom having learned his lesson, thanks to a more benevolent than usual leprechaun. Bateman's (Leprechaun Gold, 1998, etc.) chatty message is made more charming by Weber's (Angel Spreads Her Wings, 1999, etc.) winsome figures and clever details, lots of green, of course, and music-appreciating animals. A welcome addition to the slender group of St. Patrick's Day picture books. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: March 15th, 2001
ISBN: 0-8234-1523-6
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Holiday House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 2001


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