Young Reader in the Making

Young Reader in the Making

Friday, October 31, 2014

Book 370: Struwwelpeter

Struwwelpeter, tales by Heinrich Hoffman, adapted and illustrated by Bob Staake, Fantagraphic Books, 2006.

It's Hallowe'en, so the perfect time to review one of the most disturbing books in my collection -- this one.

This book has been in my to-be-reviewed stack for a few months, and, even though I have a miniature dragon guarding it all that time, my almost six-year-old son keeps managing to find it and pull it out of the pile.  I've been having to to bribe him to put it back.  The truth is, I am less concerned about this book giving him nightmares than I am that he will like it -- he seems to have inherited a rather dark sense of humor.

I remember having a copy of an earlier translation of this book when I was almost six.  I didn't scare me at all; I was fascinated.  The stories are just as ridiculously macabre as they were when I first encountered them.  The illustrations, however, are delightfully and brilliantly playful, which makes them less terrifying, but somehow more disturbing.  In other words, absolutely perfect for anyone who possesses a rather dark sense of humor.

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