This was a childhood favorite of mine, and with very good reason: the author is first class.
Her tale of two London children attempting to make something special for their Eastern European housekeeper and cook, follows them on many adventures, both physical and mental. Some are poignant, some hilarious, and it's a very heart warming tale.
Important: make sure you get the version with the original illustrations!
Oct 7, 2010
An artist approves...
My roommate owns the earlier publication of this book which has much more amazing art... this tale of a little boy creating an icon from scratch as a gift to someone he loves really touches me, as the kind of art that I make involves sacred and metaphysical subjects. (Check it out at paulruckerart.com.) the earlier edition has a very beautiful and poignant artist's rendering of what his icon might look like, which appears to incorporate metallic foil as metal leaf just as his does. I am partial to Rumer Godden's writing to begin with; Black Narcissus, now a Criterion movie, is based on one of her stories and is one of my favorite movies.
This is one of those books that shows why grownups need "children's" stories around, from time to time.
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