Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The Giant and the Beanstalk (review)

Diane Stanley. The Giant and the Beanstalk. New York: HarperCollins, 2004. 32pp. Grades PreK-2nd.

Otto, the Giant, wants his hen back, but he cannot find the right Jack in this tale of mixed-up folktales. Otto isn’t like the other giants in the magical kingdom. For one thing he is too nice and caring. When he could pick any ferocious pet in the kingdom’s pet store he chooses a hen instead. His confused and upset parents allow him to keep it because it lays golden eggs. One morning Otto surprises a human pilfering around his kingly home. When the human gets one look at him he grabs the hen and heads for a new beanstalk in the kingdom fields. In hot pursuit Otto climbs down after him and begins his search for the hen in the human kingdom. Otto starts to feel like he is on a wild goose um hen chase as he goes from Jack to Jack and still hasn’t met the correct one. Will Otto turn into a gruesome fierce Giant after spending time with humans in the search for his beloved pet hen? Author Staley has created another amusing story that children will be sure to love. Children will engage their brains trying to figure out the next Jack from common nursery rhymes as their eyes fill with beautiful illustrations.

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