Reviews for Sleeping Bobby


Booklist Reviews 2006 January #1
PreS-Gr. 2. The creators of Kate in the Beanstalk (2000) turn another familiar fairy tale into an irreverent, gender-twisting delight. As in "Sleeping Beauty," the king and queen search for a special, rarefied name worthy of their newborn child, who is "so extraordinary and so delightful." "How about Bob?" the queen asks. More deadpan punch lines appear throughout this lively retelling, which continues the reversal of sexes: at the end, it's a brave princess who comes to the rescue and plants the spell-breaking kiss on a handsome, slumbering prince. Potter's richly costumed, expressive characters amplify both the humor and sense of magic in painted spreads that, despite a few detailed images, will show well to a crowd. An excellent choice for reading aloud and for pairing with other cheeky fractured fairy tales, such as Jon Scieszka's The Stinky Cheese Man (1992). For another story about a girl hero who saves her prince, suggest Robert San Souci's A Weave of Words (1998). ((Reviewed January 1 & 15, 2006)) Copyright 2006 Booklist Reviews.

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2006 Spring
In this retelling of the Grimm brothers' "Sleeping Beauty," a boy takes the hundred-year snooze. The story is a familiar one, even with gender roles reversed, but is told with the lightest of touches. The wide-sweeping illustrations adroitly complement the droll retelling; they are set firmly in fairy-tale country but have just the right touch of humor. Copyright 2006 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

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Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2005 #5
Will and Mary Pope Osborne, ably accompanied by artist Giselle Potter (creators of Kate and the Beanstalk), retell Perrault's "Sleeping Beauty," this time with a boy taking the hundred-year snooze. The story is a familiar one, even with gender roles reversed, but told with the lightest of touches: when a longed-for baby is born to the king and queen, he is so delightful that they "wanted him to have a very special name. 'How about Bob?' asked the queen"; the Wise Women from the kingdom are invited to Bob's christening, but one is left behind "since the queen had only enough good china to serve twelve." After the curse, the pricking of the finger on the spindle, and the enchanted sleep, a clever, modest, and adventuresome princess with hair that would make Rapunzel jealous sets out to find the prince. Potter's wide-sweeping illustrations perfectly complement the droll retelling; they are set firmly in fairy-tale country but also have just the right touch of humor. Especially amusing are the pantalooned legs sticking out of the castle's thorny hedge that belong to the prince's many would-be rescuers -- young women not quite as determined as our heroine. Thanks to her, "the king and the queen and the princess and Bob...lived happily ever after" -- of course. Copyright 2005 Horn Book Magazine Reviews.

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Kirkus Reviews 2005 September #2
A third from the duo of Osborne and Potter, this one is less a feminist remake than simply a character gender swap. When a long-awaited son, Bob, is finally born to the royal couple, 12 of the kingdom's 13 Wise Women are invited to the feast (there is a shortage of china). The spurned Wise Woman gives Bob the traditional gift of death by spindle prick, while the 12th lessens the curse to a 100-year sleep. The Grimms' tale continues. Then, a "kind, clever, modest, and very lovely princess" with "great curiosity and a taste for adventure" sets out to find her fortune and determines she will seek the mysterious sleeping prince. When she finally lays eyes on him, she finds him so handsome that she just has to kiss him, thus awakening him and sparking their instantaneous love for each other. Potter continues the style set by the two earlier books-flat gouache-and-watercolor artwork in earth tones. Absent of the plucky, personality-rich heroines in their previous two outings, this one is an uninspiring disappointment save for Potter's art. (Picture book. 4-8) Copyright Kirkus 2005 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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Publishers Weekly Reviews 2005 September #2

The creators of Kate and the Beanstalk update "Sleeping Beauty" by casting Prince Bob in the lead. With that exception, this wittily told version adapts readily to the exchange of male and female roles. Prince Bob's birth is a joyous event, and the happy king and queen invite 12 Wise Women to bless their son: There are 13, "but since the queen had only enough good china to serve twelve, one had to be left out." After the uninvited guest declares that Bob will "prick his finger on a spindle" and die on his 18th birthday, another promises not death but instead a century-long nap. Despite his parents' attempts to banish all spinning wheels, Bob has "great curiosity and a taste for adventure," and gets lured to the dangerous instrument. Potter suspends the snoozing, sepia-tinted characters against an ethereal blue backdrop. Afterward, bachelorettes trade "rumors [of] a kind, clever, modest, and very handsome prince," and become tangled in the formidable palace hedge. Only one princess, with "a taste for adventure" like Bob's, beats the thorns ("If this Bob is all they say, it will take more than some shrubbery to keep me from meeting him"). The Osbornes' conversational prose lends itself to being read aloud, and Potter's mixed-media paintings suggest destined romance and humble magic between the well-matched couple. All ages. (Oct.)

[Page 67]. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

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School Library Journal Reviews 2005 October

K-Gr 3 -In the vein of Kate and the Beanstalk (2000) and The Brave Little Seamstress (2002, both S & S), the Osbornes' fairly faithful adaptation of the Grimm Brothers version of "Sleeping Beauty" is written in a breezy, readable style, and most details of the original story have been included. However, in place of the heroic prince who awakens the beautiful sleeping princess, a "kind, clever, modest, and very lovely princess" awakens sleeping Prince Bob. Potter's folk-style characters are dressed in Elizabethan garb with details such as puffed sleeves, high lace collars, and ruffs. The use of brown tones on blue backgrounds to indicate the sleeping household provides an interesting contrast. The dry wit of the text may be beyond the grasp of the youngest listeners, but everyone can appreciate the simplicity of the story and the humor in the detailed, mixed-media illustrations. As a read-aloud, this tale is sure to be a hit.-Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, OH

[Page 144]. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

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