Ugly Duckling
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Ugly Duckling

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Ever since its publication in 1845, Hans Christian Andersen's The Ugly Duckling has been a favorite with generations of children around the world. Today's youngsters will be equally moved by the hapless ugly duckling, who, ridiculed and rejected by all, suffers terrible hardships. And they will celebrate along with him when he finally emerges triumphant as the most beautiful swan of all! Bernadette Watts's detailed illustrations chronicle the bittersweet story with charm and poignancy. Perfect for institutional, trade and gift accounts.

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  • Paperback | 32 pages
  • 210 x 282 x 6mm | 99.79g
  • 01 Jan 2008
  • North-South Books
  • New York
  • English
  • Reprint
  • col
  • 0735821461
  • 9780735821460
  • 101,807

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Review text

A gentler, milder version of Andersen's classic tale of the misunderstood cygnet, inexplicably despised for his comparatively large size and definite lack of yellow but not for any real ugliness. Vainio reveals through delicate watercolors the whitish-gray fluff of a charming, tender baby desperately alone in a soft, beautiful world. Though the illustrations are lovely, they lack power. In every situation where the innocent swan is abused and finds no respite from hatred, the art handles this horror too gently. His reactions to rejection and verbal abuse are revealed in the illustrations, with a slight incline of his head showing his dejection. He is also unnaturally slow in growing, remaining a fuzzy baby over the course of months and then suddenly growing to adulthood in a page turn - a problem inherent in most illustrated versions of the tale. The unnamed translator has edited out the most violent verbal and physical abuse found in the original, making a place for it in collections for younger picture-book readers yet losing the story's raw spark. (Picture book/fairy tale. 4-6) (Kirkus Reviews)

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