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A prose translation of the Sufi poet Nizami's twelfth-century Haft Paykar is a collection of tales within a tale, where seven princesses entertain Shah Bahram with their stories of adventure, magic, and miracles.
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Wafa' Tarnowska was born in Lebanon and spent her childhood there. She has lived in Australia, India, Poland and Cyprus and is now a full-time writer for children and adults. Wafa' feels that her work is a valuable bridge between East and West, helping to break down the stereotypical images that Western people have about the East, and vice versa.
Nilesh Mistry was born in Bombay and moved to London in 1975. Inspired by the example of his great uncle, a professional illustrator, Nilesh realized at an early age that it was possible to spend his life painting! He studied Illustration at Harrow School of Art and Central St. Martin s School of Art, working for various animation companies after graduating, before becoming a freelance illustrator. Nilesh has also illustrated Story of Divaali (HC: 9781841489360, PB: 9781846861314) and Stories From the Silk Road (PB: 9781841488042).
Tarnowska bases this multidimensional if uneven collection of tales on 12th-century Persian poet Nizami's epic poem Haft Paykar. One day, Bahram, the son of the shah of Persia, discovers a secret room in the grand palace built for him by the king of Yemen, to whom the shah has sent his son to be raised. The portraits of seven fetching princessesAfrom India, China, Russia, Greece, Arabia, Persia and MoroccoAline the chamber's walls, and Bahram vows he will one day meet these beauties. After his father's death and his ascension to shah, Bahram invites them to visit his own palace, and they each tell him a story, the morals of which convey the importance of patience, truth, faith, passion, serenity, fairness and devotion to God. Many of the plots are riveting, such as "The Raja Who Dressed in Black," who grows too impatient to achieve a kiss from the queen of Houris (fairies), or "The Story of Good and Bad," in which a good friend forgives the acts of a bad one; but others seem protracted and labyrinthine (e.g., the Moroccan princess's tale). The language does not achieve that of its poetic origins; the prose is often clunky or clich'd (a wealthy Egyptian is described as having been "born with a silver spoon in his mouth"). And readers may be caught off-guard by the abrupt ending of the frame story (Bahram disappears in a cave). Mistry's (Stories from the Silk Road) ornately bordered, gouache paintings effectively portray the thematic and chromatic content of each entry and include some lovely, intricate mosaics and patterns. Tarnowska's retelling offers insight into a range of cultural lore and symbolism, but may prove esoteric for many young readers. Ages 10-up. (Aug.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Barefoot Books, 2000. Condition: New. Nilesh Mistry (illustrator). book. Seller Inventory # M1841480223
Book Description Barefoot Books, 2000. Hardcover. Condition: New. Brand New!. Seller Inventory # VIB1841480223