"A library book, I imagine, is a happy book." Cornelia Funke

"Everything puts me in mind of a story." Ben Franklin

Friday, April 22, 2011

That Apple is Mine!

That Apple is Mine!  Retold by Katya Arnold, 2000.

"I saw it first! It's mine!

I had it last! It's mine!

Oh, can't you see it's made for me?

It's mine, it's mine, it's mine!


from Mine! Mine! by Trout Fishing in America

In the autumn, one last apple hangs on a tree. Rabbit spies it, but Crow picks it and Hedgehog catches it. Who does this tasty fruit belong to? It’s up to Bear to mediate and teach the others to share. Arnold has based this tale on a story of Vladimir Suteev’s. According to Arnold’s note, Suteev was a kind of Russian Walt Disney who made films and picture books in the twentieth century.

Arnold created her art for the book with black line drawings over hand-painted collages. This results in backgrounds of sky blue, apple green and butter yellow and characters spot lit in broad strokes of contrasting colors. There is a playful retro feel here. The animals indeed look like cousins to beasties in early Disney films. Rabbit sports sneakers, with stars, Crow favors a bead necklace and Bear wears a flowered dress and kerchief. Careful observers will notice one more little creature vying for the apple, before the reveal on the final page.

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