Saturday, April 11, 2015

[BOOK REVIEW] Cendrillon: A Caribbean Cinderella by Robert D. San Souci

Title:  Cendrillon:  A Caribbean Cinderella

Author:  Robert D. San Souci

Artist:  Brian Pinkney

Genre:  Family / Caribbean / Fairy Tale / Folktale / Retelling

Year Published: 1998

Year Read:  2011

Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers   

Source:  Library

Content Rating:  Ages 5+  (Child Mistreatment)

I have read many different versions of “Cinderella” during my time, but this is the first time I have heard of a Caribbean version of the classic fairy tale!  “Cendrillon: A Caribbean Cinderella” is a unique retelling of the classic fairy tale by Robert D. San Souci along with illustrations by Brian Pinkney and it is about a young woman named Cendrillon who, with the help of her godmother, tries to go to the ball to meet the handsome prince!  “Cendrillon: A Caribbean Cinderella” is a brilliant retelling of the classic Cinderella tale that everyone will love!
I have really enjoyed this version of the classic fairy tale!  Robert D. San Souci has, as usual, done an excellent job at retelling this French-Caribbean folktale and what I really loved about Robert D. San Souci's writing  is that it is told from the godmother's point of view.  This aspect of the story was quite unusual for me since I have always read the story from Cinderella's point of view and this was the first time that I have read a version of Cinderella from the godmother's point of view.  I really did enjoy seeing the story told from the fairy godmother's point of view because it really helped me see how close the godmother was to Cendrillon and you gain a better understanding of the story if it is told from a first person's point of view.  Another aspect of the story I really loved was how the godmother was so close to Cendrillon that you can see the relationship as more like a mother and daughter relationship and it made the book so heartwarming to read through.  As I love to read in various fairy tales and folktales that originate from other countries, I was glad that there was a French Creole translation key at the end of the book since it really helped me understand the story much better and I love learning about languages from different countries, so this was a treat to read!  Brian Pinkney's illustrations are beyond beautiful in this book as all the characters look extremely realistic yet colorful at the same time.  I loved the scratchy look that Brian Pinkney provided to the illustrations since it really made the illustrations stand out.  My favorite illustration int his book was of the mansion of Monsieur Thibault as his mansion is huge and is surrounded by palm trees and flowers and the purple sky really brought out the true beauty of seeing a lit up mansion at night!
Overall, “Cendrillon: A Caribbean Cinderella” is a fantastic retelling of Cinderella that every child who love fairy tales will definitely enjoy for many years!  I would recommend this book to children ages five and up since the French Creole language might be hard for younger children to understand.

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