cover image The Walrus and the Carpenter: Lewis Carroll

The Walrus and the Carpenter: Lewis Carroll

Lewis Carroll. Henry Holt & Company, $13.95 (30pp) ISBN 978-0-8050-0071-9

Lewis Carroll's beloved nonsense poem about the walrus and the carpenter who amiably lure a bed of naive oysters to their dinner tablethen dine on themreaches new heights in nonsense with Zalben's full-color paintings. Eager for the treat promised by their hosts, a swarm of child-faced oysters swim the ocean with their coats brushed, faces washed and shoes clean and neat (""And this is odd, because, you know,/ They hadn't any feet''). After feasting on raw oysters and realizing his dinner guests are no longer with him, Zalben depicts the Walrus weeping bitter tears next to the empty shells and a blanket strewn with the poor oysters' tiny shoes. Tweedledum and Tweedledee are perfectly proper twits who introduce and deliver the poem, then discuss with Alice the morality of our hosts' odd behavior. A fine presentation of this delightful classic. (5-8)