cover image Rip Van Winkle

Rip Van Winkle

Washington Irving, Gary Kelley. Creative Company, $21.95 (64pp) ISBN 978-1-56846-082-6

Readers who haven't sat down recently with Irving's classic tale, or those who have yet to be introduced to it, are in for a treat. Written in 1820, the story of the slumbering Dutchman is remarkably fresh, told with verve and panache. In keeping with the caliber of the prose, Kelley's artwork echoes the classic tradition (and in fact occasionally brings to mind N. C. Wyeth). His light-dappled landscapes and portraits are drawn on a grand scale, and rendered in sombre, autumnal hues that hint at the story's innate mystery. Irving's puckish wit and droll descriptions are a delight. For more mature readers, the effort of navigating Irving's occasionally florid style is rewarded with many such morsels. Beautifully designed and elegantly type-set on high-quality stock, this book is as much a pleasure to hold as it is to read. Ages 12-up. (Oct.)