Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Trick of the Tale

Trick of the Tale

Fall 2008 Fiction
Ages: 10 & Up
Author: Caitlin Matthews
Author: John Matthews
Illustrator: Tomislav Tomic
Publisher: Candlewick Press
ISBN: 978-0-7636-3646-3
Hardcover Price: $18.99
Review:
In this collection of 20 trickster tales from around the world, young readers will meet an array of by-now familiar characters (B'rer Rabbit and Ananse) as well as some not so common ones (Chauntecleer and Sunguara the Hare). The re-tellings of the tales-each one introduced by a line that attributes it to a culture or continent-are sturdy and straightforward but lack the oral cadences that would keep them from seeming flat. The book-making, however, is magnificent. Exquisitely detailed ink illustrations full of both humor and pathos subtly evoke antique steel engravings; thick, textured, faux-parchment pages beautifully set off the decorative Quercus Regular font; and subtly shaded watercolor borders delineate the beginning of each of the stories.
Kristi Elle Jemtegaard   ©2008 Parents' Choice
Kristi Elle Jemtegaard is the Coordinator of Youth Services for the Arlington Public Library system. She has taught courses on children’s and young adult literature at the Catholic University of America and the University of Virginia. She has served on both the Newbery and Caldecott Award Committees of the American Library Association and has chaired the Notable Children’s Recordings Committee and the May Hill Arbuthnot Award Committee. She is a member and past president of the Children’s Book Guild of Washington DC and has chaired the Washington Post–Book Guild Nonfiction Award Committee. She is a founding member of Capitol Choices, an organization of professionals in the field of children’s literature in the greater Washington DC area. She regularly reviews children’s literature and audio productions for a variety of national publications.


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