The Ugly Duckling

Marianna Mayer, Author, Hans Christian Andersen, Author, Thomas Locker, Illustrator
Marianna Mayer, Author, Hans Christian Andersen, Author, Thomas Locker, Illustrator MacMillan Publishing Company $15.95 (39p) ISBN 978-0-02-765130-0
Reviewed on: 03/01/1987
Release date: 03/01/1987
Mayer's version of this story isn't necessarily better for its elaborate plot and long-winded road toward that familiar resolution. This time the duckling and his mother are warned by a Peking duck in the farmyard that they may be in for a surprise. But the duckling, humiliated by the constant teasing and bullying of the other animals, runs away. He sees swans fly overhead and longs to join them; later he is trapped in a frozen lake and rescued by a farmer. But of course, when spring comes, he is a beautiful swan. Mayer has elongated the Andersen tale; in doing so she has made it ponderous. It lacks the lighter touches, both humorous and poignant, found in other versions. Locker's evocative landscapes, in a classical setting, show the fleeting colors of passing seasons. (All ages)
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