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The Legend of Sleepy Hollow Paperback – November 5, 2013
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Abridged but not rewritten, the classic tale is decorated with a plethora of very small, comically gothic cartoons that add an air of spooky grotesquerie. An overall color scheme of pale browns and oranges adds a properly autumnal air to Sleepy Hollow's knobby woodlands, and the supporting cast includes nearly as many ghosts, toothy imps and the like as it does human figures. Grimly's not much for verisimilitude - party guests at the Van Tassels include African-Americans, and there's a glimpse of a generic Native American earlier on - but burly "rantipole hero" Brom Bones looks rightly massive next to the exaggeratedly gawky figure of Ichabod Crane. The Headless Horseman not only sports a particularly eerie-looking twig between its shoulders but rides a red-eyed, demonic steed, and in three views on the final page the decayed schoolhouse has a decidedly haunted air. Still, this is not a particularly scary rendition, and because its text is chopped into scattered, easily digestible passages tucked between or inside the panels, it may have more appeal to less-able readers than full versions. (Fantasy. 10-12) (Kirkus Reviews) --Kirkus Reviews
About the Author
Alice Hoffman is the author of fourteen novels, including Practical Magic, Turtle Moon, Local Girls, Here on Earth, The River King, and Blue Diary. She lives in Massachusetts.
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Edit: The 'vintage' illustrations seem to be images taken from typing 'The Legend of Sleepy Hollow' into a search engine. One of them even comes from the old Disney adaptation of the story.
The local color--the description of the farms, fields, streams, trees, brooks, and ponds in the countryside--is painted for us with great skill.
We almost find ourselves there in the account of the party at Van Tassel's....there with the host, the guests, the sumptuous traditional Dutch table settings, the telling of war stories (Revolutionary war, of course). and the recounting of tales of spooky apparitions that have reportedly been seen and heard in the area. The Headless Horseman, is, of course is the "main character" among those.
Irving describes Crane's terrifying night ride from the Van Tassel party more vividly than any animated movie that I have ever seen.
That terrifying tree that was shown in the Disney animation--which gave me chills whenever I thought about it as a child, and which made me fearful of the shapes of big leafless trees at night for years--is described very vividly by the author.
Irving tells us that it was a tulip tree. I never knew that that was what it was. We have one in the front yard. I can see it from where I write this. It doesn't frighten me a bit.
Very well written indeed, and a quick read--it is, of course, a short story.
As I said below, great for Halloween.
No planning or trip out required, if you have an e reader.
Some rather well constructed and nicely descriptive prose here, I think:
It's one of the oldest examples of American literature, but its American author, Washington Irving, penned it while he was living in England.
It is part of a collection of short stories and essays entitled The Sketchbook of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent, these were the first words from a gothic story that featured a character who was believed to have been decapitated by a cannonball.
That character, known as "The Headless Horseman", is said to be one reason that "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" became popular at Halloween.
It was first published in 1820.
Most of us have seen screen adaptations, but I had never read the story.
most of the story. If a person would like to know about the original story this book is ideal. The illustrations add understanding about the plot.
Of course, the TV Show has the Headless Horseman who is killing folks. The story takes place in 21st century. Since Sleep Hollow is being filmed in Wilmington,., New Bern, and Salisbury, N.C. and other areas in our great state, it is fun to see if you can recognize some of the scenes.
I would recommend Rip Van Winkle and the Legend of Sleepy Hollow to be read to anyone who loves history and a little mystery. It is a safe book to read to children.