The Fate of Fausto: A Painted Fable

Oliver Jeffers. Philomel, $24.99 (96p) ISBN 978-0-593-11501-5
Fausto, a balding tyrant in a three-piece suit, wants it all. “You are mine,” he tells a flower. He declares ownership of a sheep, a tree, a field, a forest, and a lake. A mountain gives him some trouble, but when Fausto “put up such a fight you would not believe”—Jeffers (Here We Are) represents it with vicious scribbles above his head—the mountain eventually concedes. Now Fausto resolves to possess the sea and, outfitted in a yellow slicker, sets out in a boat. “Sea, you are mine,” he declares. To demonstrate his “anger and importance” after the sea resists, Fausto steps from the boat to stamp his foot on its surface—allowing nature a serene return to its original, unowned state. In Jeffers’s first book featuring lithography, a medium that reproduces the energy of his lines with startling vividness, dashes of violent pink, acid yellow, and Prussian blue punctuate expanses of white space. Boldly conceived and gracefully executed, Jeffers’s dark fable imagines what happens when desire leads to selfishness and self-destruction, and shows the merits of calm refusal in the face of dangerous individuals. Ages 4–8. (Sept.)
Reviewed on : 07/03/2019
Release date: 09/17/2019
Genre: Children's
Hardcover - 978-957-14-6735-1
Hardcover - 978-89-349-9925-6
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