This title includes gorgeous artwork from John Rocco that illuminates a robust and wildly entertaining fantasy, wryly retold by Katherine and John Paterson. An ambitious Stone Age man demands a tallsman that will harden his heart, allowing him to take control of his tribe. Against better judgement, the tribe's magic man creates the Flint Heart, but the cruelty of it causes the destruction of the tribe. Thousands of years later, the tallsman re-emerges to corrupt first a boy's father, an innocent fairy creature, and a familial badger, Can Charles and his sister Unity, who have consulted with fairies such as the mysterious Zagabog, wisest creature in the universe, find a way to rescue humans, fairies and animals alike from the dark influence of the Flint Heart? This humorous, hearty and utterly delightful reworking of a 1910 story by Eden Philipotts, is perfect for an entire family to savour together or an adventurous youngster to devour. It is from renowned authors John Paterson ("Roberto's Trip to the Top") and Children's Literature Ambassador Katherine Paterson, author of "Bridge to Terabithia"; "Jacob Have I Loved"; and, "Bread and Roses, Too". Bedrock Studios and Arcady Bay Entertainment have a feature film of "The Flint Heart" already in the works. Arcady Bay principal David Paterson ("Bridge to Terabithia") will adapt his mother's book as a live-action film that will be special effects driven.
About the Author
Katherine Paterson is a two-time winner of the Newbery Medal and the National Book Award; she has received many other accolades for her work, including the Hans Christian Andersen Medal, the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, and the Governor's Award for Excellence in the Arts. John Paterson Sr. has collaborated with his wife, Katherine, on numerous books. They live in Barre, Vermont, USA. John Rocco has collaborated with Whoople Goldberg on the picture book Alice and was Creative Director at Walt Disney Imagineering; he served as pre-production art director at Dreamworks for the film Shrek. In 2009 he published Fu Finds the Way. His illustrations are also featured on the jackets for Rick Riordan's best-selling YA series Percy Jackson and the Olympians.
Enchanting...A crowd-pleaser brimming with action, magic, and wit. --Disney FamilyFun
Magical adventure...A grand tale skillfully updated and tightened up, this should win the hearts of a new generation. --Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Told in the voice of a storyteller in the style of A. A. Milne or J. M. Barrie, the tale will make an excellent read-aloud. . . . The Patersons have done a lovely job updating and abridging this tale for today's readers. --School Library Journal (starred review)
The Patersons have done a stellar job of maintaining the book's period feel while creating a fresher, tighter story that feels tailor-made for family reading. --Publishers Weekly (starred review)
The Flint Heart is a delightful fantasy, perfect for young readers or as a classroom or family read aloud. It delivers just the right amount of heart, the right amount of scary, and the right amount of wonder to enchant kids and adults alike. Told in a manner reminiscent of classic Winnie the Pooh, the story is beautifully paced and filled with characters that are memorable and most often humorous. The narrator's casual observations and witticisms will bring smiles to the faces of adult readers, while kids will be charmed by the honest, straight forward characters who are all trying so hard to overcome the evil that is the Flint Heart.
I have not read the original version of The Flint Heart which was published in 1910, so I have no way to compare the two. I have a feeling though that quite a bit of the original language was retained in this telling. It has an old fashioned, proper feel that would place it right at home in 1910. How the authors retained that feeling while still making it so accessible to today's young audience is a testament to their storytelling skill. While there are certainly words here that will challenge third and fourth grade readers, they are presented in such a way that kids will no doubt rise to the vocabulary challenge. Parents might have to chime in and explain what a hot water bottle is, but most fantasy fans will find themselves entranced by this delightful and sometimes ridiculous portrayal of fairies, pixies, and woodland life.
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