The latest collection from the duo better known as Beauty and the Beast Storytellers offers recast versions of one-to-three-minute ghost, jump and shaggy-dog tales, interspersed with performance notes addressed to fledgling performers. A mixture of chestnuts like “The Hairy Toe,” original stories and borrowings from Joseph Bruchac (“The Brave Woman and the Flying Head”) and others, all feature tellable language (“There was one extraordinary thing about this family—they lived right next door to the . . . graveyard. And every day John walked to and from work through the . . . graveyard”); are illustrated with cartoon fright scenes; by and large stay away from explicit gore and violence; and are just right for inducing “goosebumps, gasps and giggles” in susceptible audiences of any age. (source notes) (Folktales. 8-10, adult)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2006

ISBN: 0-87483-796-0

Page Count: 64

Publisher: August House

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2006

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For shark fanciers, a look at a Los Angeles Natural History Museum exhibit, Sharks: Fact and Fantasy. Now touring the country, it includes models of large and small sharks, many of them swimming in simulated undersea settings. The text follows a group of young museum-goers as they examine shark teeth, fossil sharks, sharks in art, and a living shark embryo; shark anatomy, special adaptations, types of sharks, and some shark facts are also included. Photos are clear, colorful and engaging. Not comprehensive, but an attractive added purchase. Pronunciation guide; additional reading; index. (Nonfiction. 8-10)

Pub Date: Sept. 23, 1991

ISBN: 0-395-57560-5

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Clarion Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1991

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An original “princess in a tower” tale with a startling twist. A never-revealed donor gives seven-year-old Roselupin a chest of yarn with the note: “knit what you want.” Having spent her entire life in a tall tower, thanks to an overprotective royal father, she takes thought, then knits a red wolf suit that causes her to grow hairy and huge enough to burst through the walls. After celebrating with a wild dance, she sets out to find others like her—not noticing that the costume is unraveling behind her. When the frightened king sends out searchers to discover what became of the monster, they return with the dour princess, who soon finds herself locked into an even stronger tower. Undaunted, she again takes thought, and knits her father “a rather mousy-looking pair of pajamas.” Though the scarlet behemoth bounding joyously through ankle-deep woods makes an arresting central image, readers willing to look more closely at Shannon’s shadowy, atmospheric paintings will find subtle clues in little Roselupin’s face that there’s more to her than meets the eye. Though turning her father into a mouse may seem a rather draconian way to win freedom, her tough-mindedness may give children feeling similarly smothered both amusement and vicarious relief. (Picture book. 8-10)

Pub Date: March 25, 2002

ISBN: 0-618-05544-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2002

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