La Fontaine Raconté aux Enfants

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2013
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There are seven fables here, as the early illustrated T of C shows. They are the perfect choices for little children: FC, TH, GA, OF, WL, FS, and LM. La Fontaine's verse is transformed into easily understood prose. The illustration styles are colorful and lively. As on the title -page, the climactic page of FC has a line to show the path of flight of the cheese from crow's beak to fox's mouth. After each good prose telling, there is a La Fontaine's verse text. The first scene of TH has animals in various human pre-jogging poses. The bear even has his water-bottle! The frog makes frog paw-marks in the stripe that the stag has drawn as the starting line. True to La Fontaine's version, the hare rests with his soda-plus-straw at the starting line. He tells himself that this victory will bring him no great glory. In this version, it is to show his defiance that he takes a little nap at the starting line. He awakens to see the tortoise almost at the finish line. In GA, the cicada here does not say the full the sentence that includes Je chantais. OF starts with a lovely rhyming proverb: D'un oeuf, jamais on ne fera un boeuf. Cette morale n'a rien de neuf. The frog here undergoes an identity crisis. She had thought herself the queen of places. Her humiliation sets up here for her attempt to get back her identity. Her skin takes on various colors. Petit ou grand, restez vous - même car c'est ainsi qu'on vous aime. The book's most dramatic images are those of the black wolf encountering the white lamb. If I were a parent of a young child, I would be delighted to read him or her this book.
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