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The Little Mermaid - Jerry Pinkney

The Little Mermaid Written and Illustrated by Jerry Pinkney 2020 Age range: 4-8 Hans Christian Anderson’s classic stories have been told and retold over many mediums and in many forms. As each retelling unfolds a new generation of children learn and relearn the stories. Jerry Pinkney has taken the story of The Little Mermaid and has beautifully retold it for today’s generation.

Miles below the surface of the ocean in the merfolk kingdom lives the Sea King and his four daughters. The youngest daughter, Melody is an explorer who weaves wonderful stories based on the wreckage of ships. She wonders if it is true that a “ball of fire burns over the land.” One day she follows a sea turtle who goes up to take in the air and she springs forth out of the water, and notices fish that fly and sand on the horizon. She observes a figure on the beach-one that has “two sticklike legs”-a girl that waves hello. The turtle nudges her, however, and Melody returns back to her home in the water.

Melody falls under the spell of a sea witch who offers her human legs if she would give up her voice. Melody takes up the offer to drinks a potion that allows her to transform. Melody comes ashore and meets the girl she saw on the beach-Zion. Even though Melody lost her voice she is glad to make a friend and tells her story to Zion through pictures. Zion tells her new friend, “you should have never given up your voice…for anything.” Melody realizes she has to return to her sea, because the sea witch has captured her family. It is there that her voice comes back, and she learns there is power in her voice. A Bookish Decree: Dynamic

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