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Cinderella (Walt Disney's Cinderella) Hardcover – 1 Aug 2007

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Hardcover, 1 Aug 2007
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With the help of her fairy godmother, a kitchen maid mistreated by her stepmother and stepsisters attends the palace ball where she meets the prince of her dreams.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 16 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Labor of Love 5 Nov. 2007
By S. P. McCauley - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This unexpectedly powerful version of the Disney Cinderella story may simply amaze you. Visually, it adapts concept art by Mary Blair--who was central to the look of Disney's feature films of Cinderella, Peter Pan, and Alice in Wonderland, and of his Small World exhibit.

These are not the final images as seen in Disney's film, but more expressionistic and primitive, freer, moodier, rougher, more startling. As art, they stand firmly on their own: extreme contrasts, dramatic compositions, surprising color combinations. (I think these pages would be fascinating to very young artists working with their own very free hands and their own exuberant experiments with color.) Blair's paintings capture and freeze moments of heightened feeling and thought and movement as only a brilliant artist can.

It's so interesting to play these images against those we have in memory from the film and to note how the concept paintings set the image and tone, but also how very powerful they are alone: a small square of bright sunlight warms the wall of a cold dark hallway where a young girl stands waiting--a lesson in mood, color, composition, and visual storytelling. And so is every page.

The storytelling itself is equally fine--a sublime, wise, rich, moving text by Cynthia Rylant. Beautiful unexpected turns of phrase surprise again and again. This is writing of the highest order. And it is perfectly IN place here--in this ageless work of art to which children and adults will return again and again.

"This is a book about Love." It is also clearly a labor of love for all concerned: note the interplay of text printed always against perfectly chosen colors that coordinate with the facing art (Make a game of this after the tenth rereading: "Why do you think they chose THIS color here?"), and the back dust jacket which hides (don't forget to peek) a different illustration altogether.

This is a beautiful book--one that might lead parents at some point to talk to children about editors, and artists, and designers, and poets, and about how great books are made.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Stunning! 8 Sept. 2007
By Julie Neal - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Wow! I have never seen a kids' picture book with this much sophistication. Though it's published by Disney, it does not have the typical Disney text or use the company's well-known Cinderella artwork. Instead, it retells the famous fairy tale in a spare, evocative style, and illustrates it with the 1950s watercolors that artist Mary Blair created as conceptual pieces for the animators of the classic film.

Here's how it describes when Cinderella meets the Prince at the ball: "How does a young man find his maiden? His heart leads him. He finds her in a room. He asks her to dance. And when he touches her, he knows."

The artwork is remarkable. Blair was Disney's best artist, known for her abstract interpretations that used white as their focal points. These paintings, each understated yet dramatic, represent some of her best work. I can't do them justice with words.

A good companion book, by the way, is The Art And Flair Of Mary Blair.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Every little girl needs this version of Cinderella 27 Nov. 2007
By Rebecca - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This book is a feast for both the eyes and ears. The text is sophisticated and completely lovely to read. I have read this several times to my four-year-old daughter and I've enjoyed explaining some of the author's terminology to her. Each time we read it, she picks up on another beautiful line and wants me to explain to her what it means. Some of our favorite lines from the book are "a child of ashes becomes a vision" and "in silence, love found them".

The text and the illustrations work so well together. It is truly unlike any version of Cinderella that I have read or watched. The illustrations are what prompted me to buy the book. Mary Blair is one of my favorite artists and this book has given me the opportunity to study some of her techniques. My daughter is too young to fully appreciate the mastery in the illustrations, but she is definitely picking up on the mood that they were intended to evoke. I'm amazed at how rich and full these illustrations are, even when using a minimal number of colors. I could gush on and on about how wonderful this book is!

Every detail of this book is beautiful. After writing this review, I'm looking forward to reading it to my daughter again very soon!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Truly a GEM! 25 Oct. 2007
By F. Montagna - Published on
Format: Hardcover
If you are expecting a full translation of the Disney movie,this book is not for you.There are no mice and birds,but in their place is a sophisticated retelling of the Cinderella story acccompanied by Mary Blair's stunning inspirational artwork for the Disney film. Some of these paintings have been seen in books about Blair but some of them have not. The way that Disney Press has designed the book is truly beautiful as well. Cynthia Rylant's text strips down the story to the bare essence:Cinderella's dream to be loved. The text also does not get to wordy so it gives the reader a chance to savor the illustrations.
I highly recommend this book for anyone of any age.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Cinderella more than a Children's book 19 Oct. 2007
By David C. Hearn - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This Cinderella book is much more than a children's book; it is a show case for the Art work that inspired the classic Disney film. Much like the "Sketch Books" published a few years ago by Disney this book bring us the magic of the creation of Cinderella and show cases the stylized Art of one of Disney greatest talents. A book for your coffie table as much as for your children!
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