Reviews for Legend of Sleepy Hollow


Horn Book Guide Reviews 1996
With great understanding and respect for his source, Moses, great-grandson of Grandma Moses, has given Washington Irving's American classic both a fluent retelling and handsome illustrations in an eminently suitable folk-art style. The text, which focuses on the essential characteristics of the protagonists' personalities, is appealing in its own right, but the dynamic full-color paintings make the book spectacular. Copyright 1998 Horn Book Guide Reviews

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Horn Book Magazine Reviews 1996 #2
The Hudson River tale of the hapless schoolmaster Ichabod Crane, his wooing of the charming Katrina Van Tassel, and his encounter with the Headless Horseman ensured a lasting place in American literature for the nineteenth-century writer Washington Irving. With great understanding and respect for his source, Will Moses, great-grandson of Grandma Moses, has illuminated the original with a fluent retelling and handsome illustrations in an eminently suitable folk-art style. By eliminating extraneous descriptions and commentary, Moses has focused on the essential characteristics of the protagonists' personalities without losing the flavor of a story handed down from generation to generation. The text is appealing in its own right, but the dynamic full-color illustrations make the book spectacular. Moses conveys humor, beauty, charm, and mystery in a broad-ranging palette that captures sunlit pastures as precisely as darkening shadows. And who would not be delighted with the double-page spread featuring Ichabod demonstrating his terpsichorean talents in the Van Tassel's parlor? Simply splendid! m.m.b. Copyright 1998 Horn Book Magazine Reviews

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Publishers Weekly Reviews 1995 July #4
Paintings by Grandma Moses's great-grandson make a striking match for Irving's classic story of strange goings-on in a small town in the Hudson Valley. Though greatly condensed, the plot remains intact; Ichabod Crane, the gangly schoolteacher, is driven out of Sleepy Hollow by a pumpkin-headed horseman who may (or may not) have been his flesh-and-blood rival to the affections of Katrina, a well-off young beauty. The paintings-naive, bright and straightforward in the tradition associated with Moses's illustrious forebear-suit the story stylistically although they do not fully enter into its spirit; they do not vary to plumb the moods of the story, which range from low country comedy to romance to suspense and terror. But the illustrations are well placed, either as two-page set pieces of the churchyard or Katrina's family farm (these are strikingly similar in composition to the work of Grandma Moses), or as small vignettes amidst the text. Overall, an attractive illustrated storybook, which may excite interest in the original. Ages 6-up. (Aug.) Copyright 1995 Cahners Business Information.

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School Library Journal Reviews 1995 October
Gr 3-6?Unlike the more concise adaptations by Robert Van Nutt (Rabbit Ears, 1991) and Robert San Souci (Doubleday, 1986), this version of the classic tale, retold by Grandma Moses's great-grandson, remains true to the original in its lengthy and flowery narration. An unnamed storyteller enthusiastically relays the legend of the Headless Horseman and his effect on the schoolmaster, Ichabod Crane, in ``...a mysterious, dreamy little settlement called Sleepy Hollow.'' While there are occasional awkward passages, the text is lively and compelling, with a 19th-century flavor. The primitive paintings enhance the Hudson Valley setting; unfortunately, their quality is uneven. Moses is most successful with the double-page landscapes and village scenes (similar to his great-grandmother's style), which will intrigue readers with their detailed activity. A few of the smaller vignettes capture humorous situations and the personalities of individual characters, but many, especially the night scenes, are indistinct and muddy. Moses includes black characters in the illustrations, though he has removed Irving's stereotyped descriptive passages. The lively text begs to be read aloud, but the detailed paintings lend themselves to one-on-one viewing. Try San Souci's or Van Nutt's version if you are sharing the illustrations with a group.?Kristin Lott, East Brunswick Public Library, NJ

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