Saturday, August 29, 2015

[BOOK REVIEW] The Water of Life by Barbara Rogasky

Title:  The Water of Life

Author:  Barbara Rogasky

Artist:  Trina Schart Hyman

Genre:  Family / Fairy Tale / Travel / Royalty / Magic

Year Published: 1986

Year Read:  2015

Publisher: Holiday House

Source:  Library

Content Rating:  Ages 5+ (Some Child Mistreatment)

Buy or Add on:  Amazon  //  Goodreads

Now, I have read many stories from the Brothers Grimm and I had enjoyed every single one of them!  So, imagine my surprise when I finally came upon one of the Brothers Grimm’s stories being put into a singular children’s book called “The Water of Life” retold by Barbara Rogasky along with illustrations by Trina Schart Hyman and enjoying it immensely!

The story starts off with the king becoming extremely ill and everyone thought that the king might die since there was no cure to be found.  One day however, while the king’s three sons were grieving over their father’s illness, a little old man told the sons of the Water of Life and that it might cure their father.  The oldest son then decided to seek the Water of Life; merely because he wanted to inherit his father’s kingdom and he goes on a journey to find the Water of Life.  Along the way, the oldest son meets a small dwarf who asked him where he was going and the oldest son rudely shoved the dwarf away.  The dwarf then angrily cursed the oldest son to remain trap in a ravine between two mountains for a long period of time.  When the oldest son did not return, the second son decided to search for the Water of Life and he also met the small dwarf along the way and treated the dwarf rudely when the dwarf asked the second son where he was going.  The second son then ended up in the same fate as the older brother for being too prideful towards the dwarf.  Finally, the youngest son went to search for the Water of Life himself and he actually showed kindness towards the dwarf by telling him that he was searching for the Water of Life.  The dwarf then eagerly tells the youngest son how to find the Water of Life and the trials he must overcome to get the water.

Will the youngest son be able to get the Water of Life?

Read this book to find out!

Wow!  This book was amazing!  I have always loved the Brothers Grimm’s tales and it was great seeing one of their stories showing up in a picture book format!  Barbara Rogasky’s writing is truly fantastic as Barbara Rogasky really captures the medieval spirit of this tale and I really loved the fact that the youngest son is shown to have a kind heart and that he is rewarded for his kindness.  I like the fact that the story teaches readers that having a kind heart will give you your own rewards in life. I also really enjoyed the magical aspect of this story as we have a dwarf who curses people for being arrogant and a jug of water that can cure any kind of illness inflicted on people as they make me wonder about whether or not such magical abilities should be allowed in the real world and how they would help the world become a better place to live in.  Trina Schart Hyman’s artwork is truly gorgeous as they really capture the Medieval times the story takes place in and I enjoyed seeing images of castles and magical creatures occupy this magical world.  I also loved the fact that the characters are drawn realistically as it gives the story a mature yet mesmerizing atmosphere and also make the characters stand out.

Overall, “The Water of Life” is a truly fantastic tale about true kindness that every fan of the Brothers Grimm should definitely check out!

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