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Heckedy Peg /

A mother saves her seven children from Heckedy Peg, a witch who has changed them into different kinds of food. Full description

Main Author:
Other Authors: Wood, Don, 1945- ,
Format: Book
Language: English
Published: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1987
Edition: First edition.
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In this story, seven sweet children are transformed by an evil witch into specific types of food. "The inherent drama of the story, combined with the haunting images the art provides, gives the picture book a timeless quality."-- Booklist

Review by Booklist Review

Ages 4-7. The story, taken from a sixteenth-century game still played in England today describes how seven children named for the days of the week are promised gifts by their mother, who is going to the market. The children, in turn, promise not to open the door but are duped by a witch, who turns them into delicious morsels to eat. The distraught mother tracks them to the witch's cottage and is offered the chance to save her family, but only if she can identify each child by name. It seems impossible, but by matching the children's desired gifts with their enchanted states (``Pie wants knife. That's Tuesday. Milk wants pitcher. That's Wednesday''), they are saved. Don Wood's masterful oil paintings are suffused with the glowing colors of the English countryside, contrasting well with the dark grays and browns that surround the witch's environs, and his portraits of the children, their mother, and the crone are sure and true. The inherent drama of the story, combined with the haunting images the art provides, gives the picture book a timeless quality. IC. Fairy tales / Witches Fiction [CIP] 86-33639

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

Although text and art in this picture book match as hand and glove, it is really the ornate illustrations that carry it aloft to the dimension of classic fairytale. The mother of seven children (who are named for each day of the week) leaves for the market with a list of things for thembutter, knife, pitcher, honey, salt, crackers and egg pudding. The witch Heckedy Peg who ``lost her leg'' drops in on the kids and turns them into foodbread, pie, milk, porridge, fish, cheese and roast rib. The mother finds her children and saves them by matching each food item on her list, as in bread and butter, cheese and crackers, etc. The story has essential elements of playfulness and eeriness; also evident is a poetic license that effects a looseness in structure. The realistic figures of the happy inhabitants of the cottage are bathed in bursts of light, in contrast to the shadowy, ghastly hideout of Heckedy Peg. Ages 4-8. (September) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 3 This original story reads like a pure folktale. The poor mother of seven children, each named for a day of the week, goes off to market promising to return with individual gifts that each child has requested and admonishing them to lock the door to strangers and not to touch the fire. The gullible children are tricked into disobeying their mother by the witch, Heckedy Peg, who turns them all into various kinds of food. The mother can rescue her children only by guessing which child is the fish, the roast rib, the bread, etc., a trick she neatly performs by matching each kind of food with the gift that each child had requested (Monday asked for butter, so Monday is the bread, etc.). This story, deep and rich with folk wisdom, is stunningly illustrated with Don Wood's luminous paintings. He shows the countryside as a true fairy tale settingthe half-timbered village, thatched roof cottages, haymakers in the field, and the witch's hut in dark, dank woods. With variety of color and line he enhances every nuance of the text, from the individuality of the children and the stalwart mother to the unrelenting evil of the witch. A tour de force in every way. Connie C. Rockman, The Ferguson Library, Stamford, Conn. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Audrey Wood was born on August 12, 1948. She is a children's book author and illustrator. Her books include Blue Sky, Silly Sally, Weird Parents, The Red Racer, and Tugford Wanted To Be Bad. She also collaborates with her husband Don Wood on picture books. These include Moonflute, The Napping House, Tickle-Octopus, Bright and Early Thursday Evening, and The Full Moon at the Napping House.

(Bowker Author Biography)

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