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|Princess and the peas|
Author: Himes, Rachel
In this version of the classic story, Ma Sally of Charleston County, South Carolina, devises a contest for her son's admirers: cook up a dish of black-eyed peas that meets her exacting standards, and the winner can marry her son. Includes recipe for Princess's black-eyed peas.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 3.70
Points: .5 Quiz: 189593
School Library Journal (00/04/17)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 04/01/2017 PreS-Gr 2—Food, family, and community are the heart of debut author/illustrator Himes's retelling of the classic Hans Christian Andersen story. Ma Sally, "the best cook in Charleston County, South Carolina," is concerned when her son John wants to get married, because the local gals might not feed him right, so she plans a cooking contest to see if anyone is worthy. Kind and thoughtful John is considered a catch, and several women answer the call. After they fail to impress Ma Sally in the kitchen, a newcomer to town arrives at Ma Sally's, saying she heard about some kind of contest. Introducing herself, Princess sets to work making the best peas Ma Sally has ever tasted. Princess then suggests that John might take her dancing—after he washes the dishes, of course. The narrative's rhythm and pacing hearken back to its fairy-tale roots, and the rich text ("tables groaned under crocks") will have readers' mouths watering. Himes immerses children in the Formica world of the 1950s setting, and the pastel-colored backgrounds make the characters practically pop off the page. Her textured acrylic, watercolor, and mixed-media illustrations add dimension, bringing readers into a vibrant African American community that they'll want to return to again and again. Princess's winning pea recipe is appended. VERDICT This retelling of a classic tale is a fresh interpretation and a fun read-aloud. A first purchase for most collections.—Danielle Jones, Multnomah County Library, OR - Copyright 2017 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.