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Once upon a time there was a poor woodcutter who lived near a great forest with his wife and his two children. The little boy was called Hansel, and the little girl’s name was Gretel.

So begins this classic Grimm tale of two innocent children, abandoned in the forest by their cruel mother, who happen upon the enchanting gingerbread house of a wicked witch. Hansel’s cunning and little Gretel’s courage foil the witch’s evil plan to fatten them up and eat them, and in the best fairy tale tradition, they and their loving father live happily ever after.

Dorothee Duntze’s elegant, stylized illustrations provide an intriguing new interpretation of this childhood favorite, a satisfying story of evil punished and goodness rewarded.

Author Biography: Dorothee Duntze was born in Reims, France. She studied art at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Reims and the Ecole des Arts Decoratifs in Strasbourg. Among the other books she has illustrated for North-South are The Twelve Days of Christmas, The Emperor’s New Clothes, The Princess and the Pea, and The Twelve Dancing Princesses.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780698114074
Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date: 11/28/1996
Pages: 48
Sales rank: 298,685
Product dimensions: 8.06(w) x 11.25(h) x 0.17(d)
Lexile: AD680L (what's this?)
Age Range: 4 - 8 Years

About the Author

 Rika Lesser is a poet and translator of Swedish and German literature.

Paul Zelinsky was born in Evanston, Illinois. He attended Yale University, where he took a course with Maurice Sendak, which later inspired him to pursue a career in children's books. Afterwards he received a graduate degree in painting from Tyler School of Art, in Philadelphia and Rome. Paul Zelinsky lives in New York with his wife, Deborah, and the younger of their two daughters.

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Hansel and Gretel 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 16 reviews.
Trina08 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is a classic! It is so amazing that this one book has so many different versions. I absolutely love this story mainly because the children won at the end of the story and they were smart enough to get themselves out of danger. I think this book could be used for a book club book.
lorinhigashi on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This version captures the grave and sad story of Hansel and Gretel who are abandoned by their parents in the woods to die. Hansel is the protector and looks after his sister while they try to find their way home. Although Gretel proves to be just as strong and smart as her brother later in the story. When they find the candy-made home, the owner is an old woman, not a witch in other versions. The old woman captures the children and wants to kill them so she can eat them. Although she is not a witch in the original version that this story is based on, she still proves to be evil. The variations of her character are sure to have been based on the cruel intentions she shows. The illustrations are appear to be paintings, capturing the emotional journey of Hansel and Gretel.
karenamorg on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Rika Lesser¿s 1984 retelling of Hansel and Gretel provides the reader a concise, descriptive narrative of the German folktale of the brother and sister who are abandoned by their parents in the woods. Text is beautifully enhanced by Paul Zelinsky¿s distinctive richly colored paintings that give a European verisimilitude to the woods, architecture, and clothing worn by the characters. In the Storyteller¿s Note at the end of the book, Lesser provides historical details about the tale, identifying her narrative as closer to the original that the brothers Grimm first published in 1812 than many more embellished forms that came later. Target audience grades 1-3. A 1985 Caldecott Honor book.Lesser, R., Grimm, W., Grimm, J., Zelinsky, P. O., Dodd, Mead & Company., & South China Printing Co. (1984). Hansel and Gretel. New York: Dodd, Mead & Company.
KellyBryan on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The story of Hansel and Gretel was always scary to me as a child for obvious reasons. It is a cleverly written story and I like how Rika Lesser changed it up a little bit. The illustrations are absolutely beautiful and accompany the text well. For a child it is hard to think about issues of abandonment, starvation, and cannibalism. These issues can spark conversation between you and your young one and it is a good way to keep the conversation flowing.This book can be used in class when learning about classic fairy tales. Every child should be exposed to the classics as they are listed as classics for a reason.
linnaea44 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was a great retelling of the classic Hansel and Gretel. The illustrations were beautifully done, great detail and color. I enjoyed the description of the witch and the fathers love for the children. It still shocks me that the parents would lead their children to the middle of the forest, and left to die. I loved that the children finally escape the witch, steal the jewels, and go back to their widowed father and end up saving the day. Wonderful story and great pictures for all ages.
devasun on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
when you get to the part where hansel and gretel start eating the candy house.
shomskie on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
One of the true classic fairy tales, Hansel and Gretel follows the journey of a pair of siblings as they attempt to return home after their selfish step-mother convinces their father he must dispose of them for the two of them to be able to continue living their lives. Hansel is able to thwart her first attempt by leaving a trail of pebbles to follow home, but the next day he tries to repeat this method using bread crumbs which are quickly eaten by the birds. The children must escape a mysterious candy house and the wicked witch who inhabits it before they are reunited with their father.
HollyRogers on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Hansel and Gretel is about brother and sister that is sent out into the woods to survive on there on. After being held captive by a cannibalistic witch they find a way to kill her and escape back home to their father. This book although a traditional book by the Brothers Grimm I personally do not like this book and find it very disturbing.If I were to use this book in my classroom I would use it in the study of the Brothers Grimm writings or as a lesson about how some books may disturb us but we must remember that it is just a book and to look for the positive aspects of the book like the illustrations.
ChelseaRose on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
As the classic tale goes, Hansel and Gretal's parents are poor, and their mother decides it is better to abandon their children in the woods then allow them to starve. The children find their way back to their house, but their parents take them into the woods again and this time they can't find their way back. They find themselves at the candy covered witches house, and Hansel is placed in a cage to fatten up to eat. Gretal helps the witch, but ends up outsmarting her, pushing her in the oven and they escape and return to their home. Their mother has died and their father is happy that they have returned.
justine.marxer on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Genre: FairytaleAge app: primaryReview: This is a good example of a fairytale because there is no author and the story entails the characters going through challenges. Hansel and Gretel happen upon a house in the woods made of bread and sweets.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Hansel and Gretel¿s mother wanted their father to take them into the forest and leave them. Their parents were poor and not able to feed all four of them. The children heard this and Gretel cried. Hansel didn¿t cry but said, ¿It will be all right. I have an idea.¿ Hansel snuck out and collected some white pebbles. The next morning while they walked deep into the woods with their parents, Hansel dropped pebbles to mark their path. When the moon was up they followed the pebbles home to find a happy father but an angry mother. The children heard their mother again tell the father that ¿he must take them into the forest.¿ The door was locked so Hansel could not get out to collect pebbles. The next day he left a trail of bread crumbs instead because that was all he had. The next morning the birds and animals had eaten the bread crumbs. They found a house made of bread & candy while trying to find their way home. The hungry kids began eating very fast. ¿Nibble, Nibble, Nibble! Who gnaws my house to rubble?¿ a woman¿s voice said. The woman took them in and took care of them. Then the old woman wanted to eat Hansel and Gretel. What will they do? This is a great story that has been read for many generations. Paul Zelinsky now lives in New York City. In 1998, he won the Caldecott Medal. He did a great job with retelling the Grimm tale through pictures. They are captivating and colorful. Poet Rika Lesser does a great job retelling the popular tale through words. This was the tales first transcription and first appearance in print. She is also known for three collections of poetry Growing Back and prize-winning translations. Lesser, Rika. Hansel and Gretel. New York: Puffin, 1996.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I liked the part when Hansel and Gretel found a full box of jewels and they said they woud never be poor. Their father told them that their step mother had run away but Hansel said as long as we are all together we will live happy.