Vasilissa the Beautiful: A Russian Folktale

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9780064433457: Vasilissa the Beautiful: A Russian Folktale

Mistreated by her cruel stepmother and jealous stepsisters, Vasilissa has only her little doll to comfort and protect her. But fierce powers await Vasilissa--deep in the forest lives an old witch named Baba Yaga. "Winthrop's supple, unobstrusive retelling is lively with entertaining incident."--Kirkus Reviews, pointered review. Full color.

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From School Library Journal:

Grade 2-5-- Two talented individuals--one American and one Soviet--have teamed up to tell the most beloved of Russian folktales, a cross between Cinderella and Hansel and Gretel. When her stepsisters order Vasilissa to the fearsome Baba Yaga's house for fire, she is given a series of impossible tasks. Managing them all with the help of a doll given to her by her long-dead mother, Vasilissa is subsequently freed of her stepfamily and marries a Tsar. The text is long, but Winthrop's excellent retelling is perfectly suited to the culture that produced it, and for storytelling. The language is restrained but richly conveys the wonder of the events. Particularly effective are the descriptions of Baba Yaga's house and her three servants. Equally fine are Koshkin's dramatic illustrations; executed in what appears to be gouache or tempera, they possess a grainy matte texture that complements the story's somber tone. Decorative patterns fill the regional costumes worn by the characters. A distinct sense of place is evident, from the glowing skulls that light Vasilissa's path to the court of the Tsar. And Baba Yaga is gruesomely resplendent. The only glaring fault is the lack of integration between the text and paintings, which are erratically sandwiched between solid pages of print. --Denise Anton Wright, Library Book Selection Service, Inc., Bloomington, IL Grades 3-6
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Publishers Weekly:

Sumptuous, pattern-filled paintings add an exotic air to this neatly told Russian Cinderella story. Ages 6-10.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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