Saturday, June 15, 2013

Clever Jack Takes the Cake, by Candace Fleming, illustrated by G.Brian Karas

Jack accidentally receives an invitation to the princess’s birthday party. Too poor to buy a birthday gift for the princess. Jack decides to bake her a cake. He trades for ingredients, giving a hen seed for two eggs and kissing a cow for a pail of milk, and tops his cake with the most succulent strawberry in the land. Jack proudly sets off for the castle, but blackbirds, a troll, and a dancing bear devour parts of the cake. He remains upbeat, until the Princess’s guard eats the strawberry. The Princess is allergic to them. Only thing Jack had left to offer the birthday girl is an account of his adventures. She is delighted “A Story “And an adventure story at that! What a fine gift. Proving once again the gift of story is better than rubies.

I love that it is ideal for story time and a perfect read for young boys. Candace Fleming and G, Brian Karas, creators of this wonderful picture book bring us a modern fairy tale  Fleming writes with rhythmic repetition and delicious word choices that lend themselves perfectly, while Karas' pencil art amplifies each scene’s action and mood. This picture book emphasizes the power and pleasure of a well- told tale.

Reviewed by Verlean, First Regional Library

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