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The Ugly Duckling (Illustrated) [Kindle Edition]

Hans Christian Andersen , Ripple Digital Publishing
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,797 customer reviews)

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Book Description

A classic story by Hans Christian Andersen presented with modern illustrations. The story of how a little bird endures the abuses and miseries as he was growing up not realizing he would mature into a beautiful swan. It’s a great tale about personal transformation for the better.

"It is only with the heart that one can see clearly, for the most essential things are invisible to the eye."
– Antonie De Sainte Exupery


Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Three-time Caldecott Honor artist and four-time winner of the Coretta Scott King Award, Jerry Pinkney doesn't disappoint with this lovely, old-fashioned, richly textured watercolor adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's The Ugly Duckling. The mother duck knew from the very beginning that one of her babies would be different from the rest... the sixth egg was large and oddly shaped. When it finally hatches that summer, she thinks the "monstrous big duckling" must be a turkey chick! Other ducks are appalled by the ugly duckling, and he is chased, pecked, and kicked aside. When he can't stand it anymore, he runs away from the pond, eventually taking refuge in the warm cottage of an old woman with a cat and a hen. Missing the delicious feeling of the water too much to stay, however, he heads out again into the wide, increasingly cold autumn world.
One day, he heard a sound of whirring wings, and up in the air he saw a flock of birds flying high. They were as bright as the snow that had fallen during the night, and their long necks were stretched southward. Oh, if only he could go with them! But what sort of companion could he be to those beautiful beings?"
At last, after a hard, cold winter--and plenty of the kind of adventures no one really wants to have--the duckling sees the same flock of birds he'd seen in the sky so many months ago. He decides he will follow them, somewhat dramatically preferring to be killed by them rather than suffer any more "cold and hunger and cruelty." Much to his surprise, they welcome him! And when he looks for his dull, awkward reflection in the water, he sees a beautiful swan instead. Children who feel ostracized, even for the tiniest of differences, may shed a few sympathetic tears for the ugly duckling. And no doubt, it was Andersen's wish to give them the hope of one day finding their own peaceful place. (Ages 3 to 9) --Karin Snelson

From Publishers Weekly

Pinkney's (Rikki-Tikki-Tavi) supple, exquisitely detailed watercolors provide a handsome foil to his graceful adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen classic. This "duckling" is teased unmercifully by his apparent siblings but loved by the mother duck: "He may not be quite as handsome as the others," she says, "but... I am sure he will make his way in the world as well as anybody." Eventually he runs away, and as the seasons turn, the fledgling has a series of adventures, from a close encounter with a hunting dog to getting trapped in ice. All the while he is growing, transforming, and in the triumphant ending, he finds peace and happiness when his real identity is revealed to himself and to readers. Pinkney's artwork is a swan song to the beauty of the pastoral, and his lush images flow across the pages in sweeping vistas and meticulous close-ups. Whether depicting the subtle patterns and colors of a duck's feathers, the murky twilight of a freshwater pond or the contrast of red berries against dried grasses etched with snow, Pinkney's keenly observed watercolors honor nature in all its splendor. A flawlessly nuanced performance by a consummate craftsman. Ages 3-up.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 509 KB
  • Print Length: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Ripple Digital Publishing; 1 edition (March 18, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004SUP1XO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #374 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
Like most parents, you want your child's home library to include standard fairy tales. Jerry Pinkney's "The Ugly Duckling" combines incredibly detailed ilustrations with a nice balance of both strong and muted colors AND a wonderful re-telling of the generations-old standard tale. In this verson, however, people are woven into the story in a way that I haven't seen before, and I like that very much. It's easy to see why this book was selected as a 1999 Caldecott Honor Book. Pinkney's a very gifted illustrator, and he really has to be given credit for his well-constructed text as well as the gorgeous pictures. Authors who write and then illustrate their own stories are somewhat rare, and as an adult, I appreciate the incredible mix of talent and hard work this represents. My children, of course, just love the pictures; they'll grow to appreciate good writing as they get older.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Realistic yet reverent October 4, 2009
Format:Hardcover
Let's face it, the traditional ugly duckling story is a little rough, with all of the "grown-up" animals treating that poor duckling so mean. It is understandable why other versions try to lighten it up by altering the story and/or illustrating it with cartoons.

This version maintains the shocking portions of the story. (For example, the ugly duckling is bitten because "he is so ugly he deserves to be bitten.") Although I was concerned about how it would affect my 4yo, I felt that it was vital to understanding why this little duck would run away and risk death in the cold of winter. As it turned out, it served as a good basis for discussing how we should treat people and how treating someone poorly can hurt them while treating them kindly can save a life, both literally and figuratively. I also felt the beautiful, serene illustrations served to balance the ugliness, bringing a quiet reverence to the story.
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52 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Ugly Duckling January 2, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
With my grandchildren in mind, I recently searched for free Kindle books with illustrations that would be appropriate for different young age groups. Wow! In no time at all I found the story by Hans Christian Anderson of "The Ugly Duckling". What a treasure! And...the free Kindle Fire edition is outstanding. Well formatted with many colorful illustrations. I loved the story (even at 75 years old) and knew that it would be perfect for our grandchildren in the range of 5-8 years old. Or, maybe until 100. I read it once again and marvelled at its universality. This is a winner and I give it five stars!!! Outstanding job Graphic Spin and Amazon!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story, gorgeous illustrations September 11, 2003
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This version of The Ugly Duckling is a great retelling of the classic story, with an enriched exploration of the Ugly Duckling's feelings and experiences. The illustrations are stunning. My three children, ages 3-5, are enthralled. And because of the nuance and complexity of the story, this will continue to be a family favorite for years to come.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Definitely NOT for young children December 25, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I downloaded this book for free--and after perusing it promptly deleted it. No way would this work for my 3 year old granddaughter. Here's why:

1. This is 99% text, and the few illustrations that do exist are miniscule. It's a joke to call this "illustrated."

2. The text is often boring and way over the head of a young child: "It would be very sad, were I to relate all the misery and privations the poor little duckling endured during the hard winter..." Or how about this: "He now felt glad at having suffered sorrow and trouble, because it enabled him to enjoy so much better the pleasure and happiness around him..."

3. There is also too much emphasis on beating and killing. How about this passage: "I will fly to those royal birds," he exclaimed, "and they will kill me, because I am so ugly, and dare to approach them. It does not matter. Better to be killed by them than pecked by the ducks, beaten by the hens, pushed by the maiden who feeds the poultry, or starved with hunger in the winter."

4. While this may be the original story, I remember as a child reading a version devoid of all the gore in this story, and certainly never read anything like: "Kill me, said the poor bird; and he bent his head down to the surface of the water and awaited death."

Bottom line: This is absolutely NOT suitable for young children (ages 2-5). In fact I don't think it works for older children either because while the text may not frighten them, I think it will bore them.

I just ordered Children's Classic Fairy Tales: The Ugly Duckling, which I was able to preview part of before ordering. The preview had nice illustrations and text appropriate for my granddaughter.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Ugly Duckling February 20, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I have "never" read such a cruel version of The Ugly Duckling. Not only did he receive over the top abuse, the writer had to include the sportsmen out on the moor shooting wild geese and causing the water to be tinged with blood. REALLY...this is a children's book?
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
By Talo
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Just what the title says.. I thought that there was a lot of text compared to the number of illustrations in this book. Younger kids may get bored if story are too wordy. Also some of the translations came across as being kind of harsh. Perhaps in the original German( ?) it just translates differently but I really do not want to read to my kid a line like " Please Kill me said the ugly Duckling".
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars This is Sad!!!
This is a despicable recreation of a classic children's book. Everybody involved should be ashamed of themselves and find God!
Published 9 hours ago by John P
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Fun!
Published 1 day ago by Jessica Guthrie
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
It great for children and I liked it to you she try it.I recommend this book if you have children
Published 2 days ago by Jaya
5.0 out of 5 stars ... hadn't heard the story before and we both quite enjoyed it, it's a...
I got this to read to my grandaughter since she hadn't heard the story before and we both quite enjoyed it, it's a classic, of course we loved it :)
Published 2 days ago by elizabeth gronlund
5.0 out of 5 stars Great!
We liked this book . My daughter who is five said it was a great book. We enjoyed the details in this version.
Published 3 days ago by Christina Y. Saveskie
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
My 6 year old grandson loved it.
Published 3 days ago by KHelm
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great fable!
Published 6 days ago by john lee king
4.0 out of 5 stars reference to the gym and I don't know how to get the hang of it and it...
I love you so much fun and I have to be a good day to be a good time with the best of the year and
Published 7 days ago by A. Cookey
3.0 out of 5 stars Ugly Duckling
I just wanted to let everyone know that this CHILDREN'S book just won a Caldecott honor. As I scrolled down to read the reviews, I was shocked to hear of romance, mystery, etc. Read more
Published 9 days ago by Simmone Mackinnon
5.0 out of 5 stars great
awesome for kids
Published 9 days ago by Bernard S. Johnson
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I know this book is a classic but...
It really is cute. My grandchildren would really love this.
Sep 25, 2014 by Shelve48 |  See all 2 posts
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