Mr. Semolina-Semolinus: A Greek Folktale

3.76 avg rating
( 51 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780689810930: Mr. Semolina-Semolinus: A Greek Folktale

Since she cannot find the perfect man to marry, feisty Princess Areti decides to create a man of her own, Mr. Semolina-Semolinus, out of sugar, almonds, and semolina wheat, but when he is kidnapped by an evil queen, Areti must brave a perilous journey to get him back.

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About the Author:

Giselle Potter has illustrated many books, including Kate and the Beanstalk by Mary Pope Osborne, an ALA-ALSC notable book; The Boy Who Loved Words by Roni Schotter, a Parents’ Choice Gold Award winner; and Cecil the Pet Glacier by Matthea Harvey. She is the author and illustrator of Tell Me What to Dream About and This Is My Dollhouse—both inspired by her daughters—and The Year I Didn't Go to School, about traveling through Italy with her parents’ puppet troupe when she was eight. Giselle also illustrates a weekly column called “Ties” for The New York Times. She lives in Rosendale, New York, with her husband and two daughters. Visit her online at GisellePotter.com.

From Kirkus Reviews:

Told in the fashion of a Greek folktale, this story from newcomers Manna and Mitakidou has neither the steam nor the invention to match the impressive artwork of Potter's debut. The Princess Areti crafts her own suitor from three pounds each of almonds, sugar, and semolina. ``On the fortieth day God brought the man to life,'' dubbed Mr. Semolina-Semolinus, who is ``five times beautiful and ten times kind.'' A dastardly queen from a far-off land hears tell of this special gent and steals him away. Areti embarks on an odyssey to find her beau, powwows with the mothers of the sun, moon, and stars, and receives a nut from each: ``When in need, break it.'' Areti locates Mr. Semolina-Semolinus and deploys the nuts in an effort to capture him back from the wicked queen. As she is about to fail for the third time, the story turns, unsatisfyingly, on a tailor's complaint instead of Areti's own efforts. Threads dangle, and the power of the tale seeps away. The illustrations, with skewed perspectives, eccentric characterizations, superb color sense, and whimsical angles and swoops of line, elevate the tale; readers will be looking for stronger future efforts from these three. (Picture book/folklore. 4-8) -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Anthony L. Manna; Christodoula Mitakidou
Published by Atheneum/Anne Schwartz Books (1997)
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Anthony L. Manna, Christodoula Mitakidou, Giselle Potter (Illustrator)
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