Tatterhood and the Hobgoblins: A Norwegian Folktale
retold and illustrated by Lauren A. Mills
Little, Brown Books, ISBN: 0-316-57406
A retelling of a Norwegian folktale follows Tatterhood, the wild and strange twin sister of sweet and perfect princess Isabella, as she attempts to break a spell placed on her sibling.
From School Library Journal
Grade 1-3-- Attractive, softly colored illustrations decorate and enhance this competent retelling. Common folkloric elements, such as an unhappy childless queen, unheeded advice, and magical transformations, are eventually capped by the expected happily-ever-after ending. The unexpected aspect here is the active role taken by its hoydenish heroine. The elder of twins magically born to the previously barren queen, Tatterhood, dresses in rags and rides upon a goat. Yet it is she who sets out to restore her sister, Isabella, to health when vengeful hobgoblins steal her head and replace it with the head of a calf. Tatterhood successfully vanquishes the hobgoblins and the two sisters then enjoy three more years of unspecified adventures, finally meeting a handsome king and his brother. This precipitates the happy ending of a double wedding and a triumphant journey home. The text flows smoothly, retaining enough of the original language to convey the flavor of the tale, but Mills changes some details to make the story more accessible to modern readers. The appealing illustrations are slightly reminiscent of Michael Hague's work and suit the exotic charm of the unusual story well. The cover illustration is particularly attractive and, along with the feisty heroine, should ensure that the book finds an enthusiastic audience. --Lisa Dennis, The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Beautiful and Influential
By M. Wehr on August 1, 2005
I bought "Tatterhood and the Hobgoblins" for my twin daughters 12 years ago because of the incredible beauty of the illustrations and the respect it provided for twins who were very different from each other.
Now my daughters are 16, strong and beautiful. In talking with them recently, one of them mentioned Tatterhood. "I thought I was Tatterhood," she said. (Tatterhood is the wild and strange girl in the story, with a strong and unruffled self-image.) "I always thought I was different and thinking about Tatterhood made me feel that is okay."
It's a wonderful book, a pleasure to read. The positive influence it had on my daughter was just icing on the cake!
By E. Wylder on March 14, 2010
I grew up reading this book, and it is one of my all time favorite books. I have always loved to read, and this was really one of the first things I could get my hands on. The pictures are so amazing and the story isn't one of those watered down Disney retelling, it's the real deal. Tatterhood is independent and crazy and shows that that is a good thing, and she's also brave and clever. The illustrations in Tatterhood are one of the best things about it. My copy was ruined in a flood, but I found a copy in the used book store and promptly bought it, I'm way too old to be reading children's stories without a kid to read them to, but Tatterhood is my weakness. Fairy Wings is another amazing book by these authors; and it has the same beautiful pictures that initially drew me in when I was little.
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