Reviews for Glass Slipper, Gold Sandal : A Worldwide Cinderella


Booklist Reviews 2007 November #2
*Starred Review* There are plenty of books that showcase a Cinderella from a particular country, but this beautifully conceived offering by Newbery Medal-winner Fleischman moves the story from culture to culture with a turn of the page; Cinderella goes from eating pan dulce in Mexico and receiving figs and apricots from a fairy in Iran to being handed rice from Grandfather Snake in India. Cinderella herself morphs from an Irish maiden into a Zimbabwean beauty in robe and headress. And when she runs away from the ball, she leaves behind a glass slipper, a diamond anklet, or a sandal of gold. From concept to execution, this is a sophisticated piece of artistry. Drawing on traditional textiles for inspiration, Paschkis' folk-style art is a mastery of design. Using unexpected colors (tomato, navy, maroon) and pearls of detail unique to the individual countries, her images invite readers to look and look some more. The telling (framed by a mother reading to her daughter) needs introduction, but children old enough to understand the concept of one story transversing many lands will be fascinated. Copyright 2007 Booklist Reviews.

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2008 Spring
Fleischman snips thirty-six bits from seventeen Cinderella stories and strings them into one continuous tale. The result is a kaleidoscope of storytelling styles and ethnic and cultural details. With marvelous ingenuity, Paschkis incorporates decorative folkloric motifs into the illustrations. In words and art, a graphic and inspiring demonstration of humanity's common themes, as well as its rich diversity. Copyright 2008 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

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Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2008 #1
As the author reminds us in a note, "Cinderella" is an ancient and (with "more than a thousand" versions) well-nigh universal story. To dramatize this, he's snipped thirty-six bits from seventeen different cultures worldwide, retold them with an ear tuned to their various flavors, and strung them into one continuous tale. The result is a kaleidoscope not only of storytelling styles but of ethnic and cultural details: "The King declared he would marry the golden shoe's owner" (China) and "the magistrate...took the straw sandal in his hand" (Korea); "The guests feasted on mangoes and melons" (Zimbabwe), "rice seasoned with almonds" (India), "beef stew and lamb stew" (Ireland), "anise cookies and custards" (Mexico). It's a credit to Fleischman's narrative skill that he manages to maintain continuity and coherence throughout. Following along with marvelous ingenuity, Paschkis incorporates decorative folkloric motifs into backgrounds that pair the same harmonious colors each time a country reappears (yellow on green for the West Indies, shades of lavender for France); in inset illustrations, Cinderella's long, dark hair is recognizable through multiple changes of costume. In words and art, a graphic and inspiring demonstration of humanity's common themes, as well as its rich diversity. Copyright 2008 Horn Book Magazine Reviews.

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Kirkus Reviews 2007 October #1
A gem of a book shines a light on the multifaceted Cinderella. The familiar tale begins in Mexico, continues in Korea, then Iraq, until 17 variants, from Appalachia to Zimbabwe, unfold the story in sequence. Thus, familiar motifs--glass slippers (France), lentils thrown in ashes (Germany)--share space with strikingly different ones: Godfather Snake (India), a breadfruit coach (the West Indies). Fleischman blends the different versions skillfully, adopting an Irish lilt here, an Appalachian twang there, pacing the telling brilliantly to accommodate the shifts in culture without sacrificing the tale's narrative tension. Paschkis places brightly painted folk-art vignettes in panels against backdrops inspired by the textiles of the cultures represented. Her frame, of a mother and daughter reading the book together, ties the lush presentation up in a bow. Richly colored endpapers feature a map of the world, the regions where the tales originate indicated clearly. For anyone who ever thought they'd seen enough of Cinderella, here's an offering that, in celebrating both its universality and specificity, makes the old tale new again. (Picture book/folklore. 4-10) Copyright Kirkus 2007 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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Library Media Connection - November/December 2007
Newbery award winning author Paul Fleischman has skillfully blended over 20 different versions of Cinderella into one cohesive whole. Flavored with the spice of many cultures, this new version has a delicious, chewy descriptive language that cries for reading aloud. Teachers who introduce the genre of folktales will find this book a useful model for writing assignments. Children could be encouraged to write their own version of a popular fairy tale. Compare and contrast this title with another unusual Cinderella, such as, an Irish version of Billy Beg and his Bull, the Irish Cinderlad. The illustrations are flavored with designs from the many cultures of this version's origins. The pictures are executed with gouache paints in a primitive folk style. The result is a unique Cinderella that is exceptional for its usefulness in the classroom and the beauty of its illustrations and language. Fleischman only cited one source for his many Cinderella versions, Judy Sierra's Cinderella (Oryx Press, 1992). Students of children's literature, and classroom teachers would have appreciated and found a use for a complete list of references. Highly Recommended. Dr. Audrey Irene Daigneault, Library Media Specialist, Pleasant Valley Elementary School, Groton, Connecticut © 2007 Linworth Publishing, Inc.

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Publishers Weekly Reviews 2007 September #1

Beneath its handsome William Morris-like cover art, this inspired retelling blends many versions of Cinderella into a single, extraordinary tale. As Newbery Medalist Fleischman's (Joyful Noise ) strong storytelling voice incorporates sometimes small details from different traditions, text and illustrations nimbly morph from one Cinderella story to the next, creating this brand-new version. Paschkis (Yellow Elephant ) makes use of folk art and textile patterns throughout the world in the clever background paintings behind each of her vibrant panel illustrations, and she helpfully and unobtrusively labels the country from which relevant borrowings originate. Generally, each page focuses on a single country's contributions, but even when details from several countries share a spread, visual harmony prevails and characters remain recognizable despite their costume changes. When Cinderella has nothing to wear, for example, "a crocodile swam up to the surface--and in its mouth was a sarong made of gold [Indonesia]... a cloak sewn of kingfisher feathers [China]... a kimono red as sunset [Japan]." Even the last line of text is patched from several sources: "Such a wedding it was, and such an adoring couple [Iraq]... and such a wondrous turn of events [Korea]... that people today are still telling the story." Paschkis emphasizes the storyteller's voice by beginning and ending the narrative with illustrations of a mother reading to her daughter--a daughter who, appropriately, looks much like Cinderella herself.Ages 5-up. (Sept.)

[Page 58]. Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

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School Library Journal Reviews 2007 September

K-Gr 4-- Capitalizing on the frequently made assertion that Cinderella is the most widely told folktale on earth, Fleischman and Paschkis have created a pan-cultural, universally pleasing interweaving of variants from 17 distinct cultures. This clever books reads nearly seamlessly and somehow manages to convey simultaneously the essential sameness of the story and the particularities of the different versions. Dressing for the royal shindig, our heroine, "…looked in her mother's sewing basket (Laos). Then she reached into the hole in the birch tree (Russia). Then a crocodile swam up to the surface--and in its mouth was a sarong made of gold (Indonesia)…a cloak sewn of kingfisher feathers (China)…a kimono red as sunset (Japan)." Paschkis's backgrounds to the text and gouache illustrations alert readers to the shifts in locale by the use of color-coding and of folk-art design motifs drawn from each culture until the final scene where costumes, dances, music, and cuisines from across the globe convene at a wedding so wondrous "that people today are still telling the story." Endings don't get any happier than in this global tour de force.--Miriam Lang Budin, Chappaqua Public Library, NY

[Page 182]. Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

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