- USD 3.99
Pook Press celebrates the great Golden Age of Illustration in children's literature. Many of the earliest children's books, particularly those dating back to the 1850s and before, are now extremely scarce and increasingly expensive. Pook Press are working to republish these classic works in affordable, high quality, colour editions, using the original text and artwork so these works can delight another generation of children. Kay Nielsen (1886-1957) was a Danish illustrator of the golden age of illustration. He was influenced by Japanese art and the Swedish fairy tale illustrator John Bauer and contributed to the Art Nouveau movement. His illustrations are bold, and vibrant - often reproduced by a 4-colour process which set him apart from his contemporaries who typically used a 3-colour process. His art is characterised by long, swooping lines, open spaces and a certain macabre quality and his ephemeral illustrations are intricately inventive, flirting with implausibility. The shift in taste from fantasy to realism after WWII meant that Nielsen did not retain his pre-war popularity. However, interest in his exquisite illustrations has since been revived, and they now command a high price in today's art world.
This expansively illustrated edition of a well-loved epic romance, told here in Sir George Webbe Dasent's 1859 translation from the Norwegian, has lost none of its Gothic beauty and irresistible power. Dasent's translation is a real page-turner, told in a relaxed, conversational style that manages to be at once soothing and suspenseful. Readers will follow eagerly the plight of the beautiful, unnamed lassie, who must travel to a far-off kingdom to rescue her beloved prince from the clutches of an evil--and very ugly--bride. Only a rather swift resolution sounds a slightly jarring note in the otherwise engrossing tale. Lynch's sweeping paintings in dark greens and browns, with their large close-ups and exciting shifts in perspective, expertly capture the story's heroic scale. Several spreads are especially noteworthy: the dizzying bird's-eye-view of the heroine and her bear, dwarfed by the palace's massive architecture; the North Wind, rising from the mists like a bearded Old Testament patriarch, carrying the speck of a girl on his back as the seas roil below. The book's lavish endpapers, in the style of an Old World cartographer, point the way to this enticing kingdom east o' the sun and west o' the moon. Ages 4-up.