Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Review - The Girl in the Castle Inside the Museum

The Girl in the Castle Inside the Museum
by Kate Bernheimer
illustrated by Nicoletta Ceccoli
Date: 2008
Publisher: Schwartz & Wade
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 40
Format: e-book
Source: library

Once there was a girl who lived in a castle. The castle was inside a museum. When children visited, they’d press against the glass globe in which the castle sat, to glimpse the tiny girl. But when they went home, the girl was lonely. Then one day, she had an idea! What if you hung a picture of yourself inside the castle inside the museum, inside this book? Then you’d able to keep the girl company. Reminiscent of “The Lady of Shalott,” here is an original fairy tale that feels like a dream—haunting, beautiful, and completely unforgettable.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

I was just browsing through the local library's collection of e-books and the cover of this one caught my eye.

The illustrations are absolutely gorgeous.  I barely read the words as I flipped from one gossamer-like painting to the next.  They're beautiful little works of art that I can easily imagine as framed prints on the wall of a little girl's bedroom.

Unfortunately, the story is rather lacking.  I got the feeling that someone really liked a bunch of existing illustrations, and so hired a writer to come up with a bit of text to tie it all together.  There really is no plot.  It's just about a girl who lives in a castle inside the museum and dreams about people coming to visit her.  That's it.  It's too bad, because with a better story, this could have been an amazing picture book.  As it is, it's a collection of beautiful illustrations... but not much more.

Premise: 3/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 4/5
Illustrations: 5/5
Originality: 4/5
Enjoyment: 5/5

Overall: 4.2 out of 5

2 comments:

  1. Too bad it fell short of your expectations...still, I think I'd like to give it a go. The pictures alone would be worth the experience...plus I'm a sucker for titles like this. ^_^ Happy reading!

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  2. Great review! Anyone who is out to buy English books online, must add this book in the list.

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