The Gift of the Crocodile is a tale from Indonesia’s Spice Islands, retold by Judy Sierra and illustrated in vivid colour by Reynold Ruffins.
Why I like this book:
- It’s a fairy (folk?) tale!
- Damura, our protagonist, is more complicated than the standard Disney-type fare — no surprise there, as she is a folk tale hero
- Damura makes mistakes as well as wise and compassionate choices
- Damura’s espressions. Particularly in the scene where she sings to a baby crocodile. The song is perfect for reading aloud: just short enough to make improvising a tune easy; just long enough to tantalize the audience.
- Grandmother Crocodile. I can hear her elderly voice, both cracked and sturdy and altogether authoritative.
- The subtle echoes back to Damura’s dead mother. It is Grandmother Crocodile who gives Damura clothes and a carriage, and it is the dance steps Damura’s mother had taught her that entrance the prince.
- The illustrations are vibrant with colour and life. The final page is so lovely. I hope the original is on the wall of a library somewhere, or in a gallery.
The domovoi’s gaze wandered, and his mouth drooped open. “I am weak,” he slurred. “And the wood-guard is weak. Our enemy has loosened his chain. Soon he will be free. I cannot keep him out.” “Who is the enemy?” “Appetite,” said the domovoi again. “Madness. Terror. He wants to eat the world.” “How can I […]
Source: Publisher I received a package in the mail the other day and my niece immediately pounced on it because she knows I get picturebooks and the like in the mail often. She waited while I opened it and then her eyes grew as big as saucers when she Silver Dolphin Books First Stories series. […]
Hardcover, 480 pages Expected publication: October 4th 2016 by Chronicle Books Source: Raincoast Books Cue rather hysterical laughter as Nafiza tries to get over that ending. *weeps* *regains composure* I’m okay. I think. As okay as you can be while dangling from a cliffhanger. Sniff. Deep breath. Let’s talk about The Doorway and the Deep. […]
Vassa in the Night by Sarah Porter is not the strangest book I have read but it does number among one of the strangest. Let me show you a series of gifs to illustrate my reactions while reading the book. But it wasn’t a bad book at all. Just interestingly strange. I would tell you […]
Hardcover, 208 pages Expected publication: September 6th 2016 by First Second Source: Publisher Mighty Jack is Ben Hatke’s first foray into fairytale retelling and if Mighty Jack is anything to go by, I reckon I want to see Hatke retell all stories. I have been a fan of Hatke’s art and stories for a while […]
It has been a particularly challenging week (what do you mean it’s only Tuesday?) and I find myself not up to the challenge of writing a thought out, readable essay on Nodame Cantabile and since I love it too much to do a shoddy job on it, I have decided to postpone that post till next week […]
Hardcover, 247 pages Published May 10th 2011 by Feiwel & Friends Source: Purchased “One ought not to judge her: all children are Heartless. They have not grown a heart yet, which is why they can climb high trees and say shocking things and leap so very high grown-up hearts flutter in terror. Hearts weigh quite […]
Hardcover, 432 pages Published September 24th 2013 by Greenwillow Books Source: Purchased Pikey Thomas dreamed of plums and caramel apples the night the faery-with-the-peeling-face stole his left eye. I read the first novel in this duology a while ago–I say duology but the books can be read as standalones. The events of the first book […]
If you have read Holly Black’s Modern Faerie Tales series, you will be acquainted with her brand of vicious fae that call the city streets their own. The fae in Katherine Harbour’s Night and Nothing series are cast from the same mold but more on that later. First, an introduction. I have read the first two in […]