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The Sleeper and the Spindle Hardcover – September 22, 2015
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From School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up—Snow White meets Sleeping Beauty in this fairytale mash-up where things are not what they seem. When three dwarfs learn of a sleeping plague spreading throughout the land, they alert their queen. The queen, already feeling that marriage means the end of her ability to make choices in her life, gladly postpones her wedding, grabs her sword, and sets off with the dwarfs to get to the bottom of the magical curse. On their way, they encounter throngs of cobweb-covered sleepers. To their surprise, the slumbering masses talk in their sleep and eventually begin to lumber after them. The team forges ahead to the castle, where they find the sleeping princess and an old woman. The queen's kiss, shown in a sumptuous spread, wakes the princess. The quest turns out to be just what the queen needs to be reminded of the choices she has. Riddell's spectacularly intricate ink drawings, gilded with gold, bring Gaiman's inventive story to life. Each page is packed with marvelous details—vines claustrophobically twist everywhere and expressions convey far more emotion than the words let on. Gaiman's narrative about strength, sacrifice, choice, and identity is no simple retelling; he sends readers down one path then deliciously sends the story veering off in an unexpected direction. The only downside—the tale ends far too soon. VERDICT This highly recommended visually stunning twist on two classic fairy tales will be well received by fans of graphic novels and fantasy stories.—Amanda MacGregor, Great River Regional Library, St. Cloud, MN
“Gaiman and Riddell’s greatest [collaboration] to date.” (Tor.com)
“Told in a way only Gaiman can” and featuring “stunning metallic artwork.” (GeekInsider)
“A refreshing, much-needed twist on a classic story.” (The Guardian)
“Spellbindingly illustrated.” (Gaby Wood, Saturday Telegraph)
“Magical, sumptuous, transporting.” (The Big Issue)
“Unforgettable, unpredictable and utterly enchanting for anyone between the ages of seven and seventy.” (Amanda Craig, The New Statesman)
“A genuine treat.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))
“A spectacular art object...certainly a treasure.” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))
“Riddell’s spectacularly intricate ink drawings, gilded with gold, bring Gaiman’s inventive story to life...This highly recommended visually stunning twist on two classic fairy tales will be well received by fans of graphic novels and fantasy stories.” (School Library Journal (starred review))
“A wholly original reimagining...Riddell’s artwork is the reason a library should own this title in their collection. His details are exquisite.” (Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA))
“A striking volume...thrums with malevolence and confounds our expectations...[the pictures] seem to writhe creepily on the page.” (Wall Street Journal)
“Unabashedly feminist...So sonically tuned that it breathes on its own from the very first line. Adding to the wonder are Chris Riddell’s dazzling illustrations.” (New York Times Book Review)
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Top customer reviews
For what it is, it's worth the read. It's also a lovely gift for a reader. I'm giving a copy to my boyfriend's mother for Christmas, for example. I wouldn't necessarily spend the money on it for myself (since it's very short), but it's so gorgeous that I would love to have a copy on my bookshelf.
3.5 out of 5 stars, but I rounded up because of the illustrations
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or do we?
The princess is about to get married... to the prince who kissed her awake?Read more