Bound To Stay Bound

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 Hank and Gertie : a pioneer Hansel and Gretel story
 Author: Kimmel, Eric A.

 Publisher:  WestWinds Press (2018)

 Classification: Easy
 Physical Description: [32] p., col. ill., 26 cm

 BTSB No: 518140 ISBN: 9781513261225
 Ages: 6-8 Grades: 1-3

 Lost children -- Fiction
 Siblings -- Fiction
 Frontier and pioneer life -- Fiction
 Witches -- Fiction
 Wagon trains -- Fiction

Price: $6.50

In this version of the classic tale, two children wander from the wagon train taking them west and find a log cabin made of candy, inhabited by a witch.

 Illustrator: Penny, Mara

   Kirkus Reviews (-) (06/15/18)
   School Library Journal (-) (08/01/18)
   Booklist (07/01/18)

Full Text Reviews:

Booklist - 07/01/2018 In this retelling, Kimmel takes the classic story, with its themes of abandonment and children outwitting adults, and places it along the Oregon Trail. Siblings Hank and Gertie wonder off the trail, until they discover a yummy-looking cabin of licorice and rock candy. Soon, of course, a witch places Hank under a spell and Gertie in shackles with an iron ball and chain. Gertie eventually outsmarts the witch and breaks the spell on Hank, enabling both of them to escape—in a flying kettle, no less. Penny beautifully illustrates this story in a dusty palette, including plenty of Old West details (the witch wears a 10-gallon hat, and Gertie gets “spittin’ mad”). Some elements are a bit confusing—how did the witch cast a spell on Hank?—but, thankfully, a closing author’s note gives insight into how Kimmel reconfigured the story for the Oregon Trail setting, which makes the book appropriate for classroom discussions. Overall, this is a gentle, familiar read that isn’t too dark and scary. - Copyright 2018 Booklist.

School Library Journal - 08/01/2018 PreS-Gr 2—The familiar Grimm tale has been recast in a Western setting. Here, renamed siblings Hank and Gertie leave their mother to explore the countryside while the wagon train stops by a stream for lunch. Predictably, the children become lost when birds eat the bread crumbs they leave to find their way back. Soon the children meet Aunt Caroline while munching on her candy cabin. Of course, Aunt Caroline is actually a witch (Western style; plus she travels in a flying kettle). The old girl quickly begins to fatten up Hank for her barbecue while Gertie toils in the corral. Gertie tricks the witch into demonstrating her shape-changing skills, she changes into a rattlesnake that gets gobbled up by a coyote (a former boulder). Illustrations in muted colors and broad forms appear to be digital collage. They suggest the setting and provide additional details about Hank's diet and Aunt Caroline and her outfit. A concluding note from prolific reteller Kimmel briefly discusses folktale traditions and the Oregon Trail setting. VERDICT This version somewhat softens the harshness of the original tale but the specificity of the setting and various additions make it less broadly appealing.—Maria B. Salvadore, formerly at District of Columbia Public Library - Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

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