A tattered scarecrow stands in the middle of a muddy field, taking no notice of the violent thunderstorm around him. But when a bolt of lightning strikes him, fizzing its way through his turnip head and down his broomstick, the Scarecrow blinks with surprise-and comes to life.
So begins the story of the Scarecrow, a courteous but pea-brained fellow with grand ideas. He meets a boy, Jack, who becomes his faithful servant. Leaving behind his bird-scaring duties, the Scarecrow sets out for Spring Valley, with Jack at his side. As the valiant Scarecrow plunges them into terrifying dangers-battles, brigands, broken hearts, and treasure islands-he never realizes he's being followed by the one family who desperately wishes he'd never sprung to life. Will the Scarecrow discover the secret to his past before the crooked Buffalonis close in on him?.
Oz isn't the only place where scarecrows make great traveling companions. In Pullman's (The Golden Compass) charming and original fairy tale, a natty and blithe scarecrow comes to life when he's struck by lightning. He quickly hires on a local orphan boy named Jack to be his servant and the two set off to see not the wizard, but the world-and seek out a place called Spring Valley, where the scarecrow knows he belongs. Entertaining adventures, including outwitting a band of brigands, ensue. British actor Malcolm's velvety, elegant voice makes nimble transitions between a cast of distinct character voices: the gruff brigands, simple farmer and eager young Jack. The scarecrow's confident, sophisticated manner of speaking is humorous and sometimes touching-but always memorable. Listeners will delight in Malcolm's interpretation of this blend of new twists and familiar elements, all strung together in Pullman's fine style. Ages 8-12. (Sept.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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May 07, 2007
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