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The Flint Heart Paperback – Abridged, August 14, 2012
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From Robin to the Joker, this compact, informative collection is your guide into over 75 years of the Dark Knight's friends and foes. Hardcover
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Magical adventure...A grand tale skillfully updated and tightened up, this should win the hearts of a new generation.
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Told in the voice of a storyteller in the style of A. A. Milne or J. M. Barrie, the tale will make an excellent read-aloud. . . . The Patersons have done a lovely job updating and abridging this tale for today's readers.
—School Library Journal (starred review)
The Patersons have done a stellar job of maintaining the book's period feel while creating a fresher, tighter story that feels tailor-made for family reading.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
About the Author
John Paterson Sr. (1932-2013) collaborated with his wife, Katherine, on Consider the Lilies: Plants of the Bible; Images of God; and Blueberries for The Queen.
John Rocco collaborated with Whoopie Goldberg on the picture book Alice and was Creative Director at Walt Disney Imagineering and served as pre-production art director at Dreamworks for the ? lm Shrek. His children's books include FU FINDS THE WAY, WOLF! WOLF!, and MOONPOWDER, and his illustrations are also featured on the jackets of Rick Riordan's best-selling YA series Percy Jackson and the Olympians. John Rocco lives in Brooklyn, New York.
From the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
I have not read the original version of The Flint Heart which was published in 1910, so I have no way to compare the two. I have a feeling though that quite a bit of the original language was retained in this telling. It has an old fashioned, proper feel that would place it right at home in 1910. How the authors retained that feeling while still making it so accessible to today's young audience is a testament to their storytelling skill. While there are certainly words here that will challenge third and fourth grade readers, they are presented in such a way that kids will no doubt rise to the vocabulary challenge. Parents might have to chime in and explain what a hot water bottle is, but most fantasy fans will find themselves entranced by this delightful and sometimes ridiculous portrayal of fairies, pixies, and woodland life.
The plot is summarized quite ably in the product description, so I will only add my fondness for the morals of this story.Read more ›
The story itself is a true fairy tale. There are pixies and fairies and all sorts of tiny talking creatures. There is magic and mystery, kindness and unkindness. The story centers on a small piece of flint, shaped like a heart, that has the magical ability to change a person's personality instantly. No matter how kind or cheerful he may have been, when he holds the flint heart he becomes power-hungry, cruel, and heartless.
Although the tale begins with a humorous episode in England in the Stone Age, it soon moves forward to rural Dartmoor about 100 years ago. A farmer with a large family finds the flint, and his personality is transformed. The rest of the story is the adventures of Charles and Unity, two of the farmer's children, as they try to bring back their beloved father's gentle personality. They need the help of many tiny creatures in the fairy kingdom to achieve their goal.
Parents should know that this is a true old-fashioned fairy tale, originally written in 1910, with dispassionate violence and cruelty to fairies, dogs, and children. In the Stone Age, "Phutt cooly took out his ax and whacked the man on the head, killing him on the spot." Phutt committed other dastardly acts, as did all the others that found the flint heart through the centuries.Read more ›
The second thing I found intriguing about this book was the story itself. This is not a fairy tale that I have heard before so I was interested to see how the story played out. The story itself kind of meanders. It is not really compelling so much as thought-provoking. Like most fairy tales, there is definitely a message here about leadership and wisdom versus greed and hunger for power. I think the book would be enjoyable for the right kind of reader, a more thoughtful reader. Quite a few kids might pick it up because of the gorgeous cover, but I wonder how many would actually finish it. On the other hand, the book would make for some very interesting discussions as a read-a-loud.
The Flint Heart by James and Katherine Patterson is my new favorite. Its riveting plot takes a turn for the worse multiple times. It is filled with action and I can easily say there is nothing unsatisfactory about this book. It's hilarious illustrations and creative characters are superb. It has just the right dose of reality and fantasy that makes it quintessential. This is a book that young and old will enjoy.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great book. Bought it for my nephew & he really loves it. Very happy.Published 19 months ago by J. Avery
This book was slow to take off. couldn't hold my interest. Stop reading early on. Don't waste your time with this one.Published on August 18, 2013 by Cee Bee
This story is long and rambling, but it does have a lot of interesting parts. The illustrations are wonderful, but the references are strictly adult and some of the slang would be... Read morePublished on January 14, 2013 by A. Kermath
Every night my 2 oldest boys and I look forward to bedtime so that we can escape into this wonderful book. This is the best book I have read to them in a long time if not ever. Read morePublished on October 23, 2012 by Jaime Doyle
This past week I had my darling grandaughter, 9 yr. old Laney, who is growing up entirely too fast, but for right now, we have alot in common and I adore having her around. Read morePublished on June 3, 2012 by R. T. Young
I'm glad I chose to READ this to my nine-year old because the language is older than he's used to -- and by older, I mean because the book was originally published in 1910, that's... Read morePublished on May 20, 2012 by Lori Anderson
As an adult of 2 young girls I found this book a lot of fun to read to them. As an adult the story was fun but I found the story lacking. Read morePublished on April 25, 2012 by Aaron Lee
Despite being a longtime Paterson fan, I tried to read The Flint Heart with cool objectivity. Sated with fantasy as I am in my line of work,it's difficult not to be cynical when... Read morePublished on April 24, 2012 by GreenG