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Gr 1-3-A story that explores the consequences of pride and vanity. The Kingdom of Midnight has plenty of water, but no oil to light the lamps at night. The Kingdom of the Desert has plenty of oil, but no water for the gardens. The Grand Prince from Midnight and the Grand Princess from the Desert both pray to God for an answer to the problem. They are shown that the answer lies in the other kingdom, but both of them are too stubborn and prideful to ask the other for help. Through the aid of two children, they do finally meet in the valley between their kingdoms, but neither one is able to make the first move. Instead, they stand waiting and in the process turn into stone mountains. While looking for the two rulers, the children meet and exchange their precious resources. In this way, the people's desperate needs are met. Sasso's lyrical style carries readers through the story, masking the didactic tone of the text. Katz's use of lush blues and purples for the Kingdom of Midnight and golden yellows for the Kingdom of the Desert in full- and half-page spreads makes this a good choice for storytimes.-Tali Balas, Ethical Culture Fieldston School, New York City
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