The Goat-Faced Girl: A Classic Italian Folktale

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1st Edition

Retold by Leah Marinsky Sharpe. Illustrated by Jane Marinsky. David R. Godine Publishers, hardback, 203 x 254 mm. 32pp
In stock in Australia for immediate despatch

Like many good fables, this story opens with a foundling left - rather inconveniently, if not surprisingly - in the woods. A large lizard, ever conscious of tripping hazards, picks up the infant and takes her home, where she soon grows into a pretty, pampered, and generally useless young woman named Isabella. Despite her adoptive mother's efforts (for the lizard is really a witch in disguise) to shape her up, the girl prefers the alluring life offered her by the charming Prince Rupert, a world of cooks and servants, palaces and jewels, luxury and indolence.

Luckily, the lizard woman is a canny, concerned parent. She does not suffer fools lightly and is not about to let her daughter's too-easy transition to palace life go unchallenged. And so she arranges a surprise transformation for her daughter - one that puts the prince's marital plans on hold and gives the witch just enough time to hammer home a few lessons about the downside of idleness, the inanity of vanity, and the satisfactions of self-reliance.

In this witty, modern interpretation of a classic Italian folktale, Leah Marinsky Sharpe has crafted a light-hearted mother-daughter fable with a moral that is sure to strike a chord with readers of all ages. The illustrations by Jane Marinsky glow with rich colour and playful humour. Together, words and pictures provide a zesty treat for parents and children alike.

Leah Marinsky Sharpe has told stories all her life, but this is the first one to be published. When not writing children's books, she is finishing her PhD in conservation biology. Jane Marinsky's editorial illustrations have appeared in many major publications. She is proud that her daughter, Leah, is talented, capable, imaginative, and not at all lazy.

Kirkus Review:

'Though Marinsky dresses the cast in traditional fairy-tale hose and flowing gowns, there's a distinctly modern cast to this arch rendition of an old tale. When a beautiful but indolent young woman named Isabella accepts the proposal of equally lazy Prince Rupert, the doting sorceress who raised her in luxury, deciding that she needs to mend her ways first, endows her with a goat's head. The horrified prince tries to fob her off by assigning tasks like preparing a royal feast alone and creating her own luxurious gown - for which the sorceress provides cookbooks, pots and other tools. Eventually Isabella grows fond of doing for herself, regains her human topper and sends Rupert packing when he frankly admits that he only cared about her looks: 'You mean to tell me ... [y]ou only care about how I look? Not who I am'? Sharpe has made changes in theme (that goat's head was originally punishment for being ungrateful) and language, but this version, the story's first separate appearance in this country, will make a popular gift from parents and caregivers afflicted with similarly slothful younglings'. (Picture book/folktale. 8-11).


SKU 9781567923933
Barcode # 9781567923933
Brand Godine
Artist / Author Leah Marinsky SHARPE (reteller)

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