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Heckedy Peg
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About the Author

Audrey Wood is the author of many beloved books for children, including the bestselling classic The Napping House, its companion The Full Moon at the Napping House, Caldecott Honor Book King Bidgood's in the Bathtub, Heckedy Peg, Piggies, and Piggy Pie Po, all of which were illustrated by her husband, Don Wood. The Woods divide their time between California and Hawaii. www.audreywood.com Don Wood is the illustrator of many beloved books for children, including the bestselling classic The Napping House, its companion The Full Moon at the Napping House, Caldecott Honor Book King Bidgood's in the Bathtub, Heckedy Peg, Piggies, and Piggy Pie Po, all of which were written by his wife, Audrey Wood. The Woods divide their time between California and Hawaii. www.audreywood.com

Reviews

K-Gr 3 This original story reads like a pure folktale. The poor mother of seven children, each named for a day of the week, goes off to market promising to return with individual gifts that each child has requested and admonishing them to lock the door to strangers and not to touch the fire. The gullible children are tricked into disobeying their mother by the witch, Heckedy Peg, who turns them all into various kinds of food. The mother can rescue her children only by guessing which child is the fish, the roast rib, the bread, etc., a trick she neatly performs by matching each kind of food with the gift that each child had requested (Monday asked for butter, so Monday is the bread, etc.). This story, deep and rich with folk wisdom, is stunningly illustrated with Don Wood's luminous paintings. He shows the countryside as a true fairy tale settingthe half-timbered village, thatched roof cottages, haymakers in the field, and the witch's hut in dark, dank woods. With variety of color and line he enhances every nuance of the text, from the individuality of the children and the stalwart mother to the unrelenting evil of the witch. A tour de force in every way. Connie C. Rockman, The Ferguson Library, Stamford, Conn.

Although text and art in this picture book match as hand and glove, it is really the ornate illustrations that carry it aloft to the dimension of classic fairytale. The mother of seven children (who are named for each day of the week) leaves for the market with a list of things for thembutter, knife, pitcher, honey, salt, crackers and egg pudding. The witch Heckedy Peg who ``lost her leg'' drops in on the kids and turns them into foodbread, pie, milk, porridge, fish, cheese and roast rib. The mother finds her children and saves them by matching each food item on her list, as in bread and butter, cheese and crackers, etc. The story has essential elements of playfulness and eeriness; also evident is a poetic license that effects a looseness in structure. The realistic figures of the happy inhabitants of the cottage are bathed in bursts of light, in contrast to the shadowy, ghastly hideout of Heckedy Peg. Ages 4-8. (September)

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