external image hansel-gretel-graphic-novel-donald-hardcover-cover-art.jpg
Hansel and Gretel is a graphic novel that is retold by Donald Lemke and illustrated by Sean Dietrich. This short story takes place in a forest, in the middle of nowhere, where there lives a family of four. The forest is quiet and large and the cottage is small and shabby. The family is very poor and the children end up getting lost in a deep dark, unforgiving forest. The dark, twisted, unique illustrations of this graphic novel will keep you interested and entertained!!

The main characters are the malevolence stepmother, the loving father, also known as the woodcutter, Hansel and Gretel and the wicked old witch. The stepmother is an evil woman who is selfish and ugly. She despises her step children and wants them to die. She is rude and inconsiderate and wants to send Hansel and Gretel into the forest to perish, so that the woodcutter and she will have food to survive. The woodcutter, also known as the father, is a kind, gentle man who loves his two children and tries his very hardest to provide for them. But his evil step wife wears the “pants” in the relationship and he has no say in anything that happens. Hansel is the woodcutter’s son and he loves and cares very much about his sister. He tries to protect her and keeps her safe from their nasty stepmother. Gretel is Hansel’s sister and she is small and innocent. She gets pushed around and the father has no say over it. She is frightened and feeble and just needs some love. Gretel is tiny and precious and incapable of standing up for herself against their depraved stepmother. Last but not least is the wicked witch, who appears at first to be a nice old lady but only wants to exterminate Hansel and Gretel. The old witch is evil and hideous and she is out to kill.

external image dietrich_hanselandgretel.jpg
This graphic novel is about an unhappy family of four who is poor and miserable. The evil stepmother is wicked and wants to kill Hansel and Gretel so that the woodcutter and she will have enough food. Eventually, the stepmother demands to her husband that the children will be sent out into the forest to gather “firewood”, but really she wants to abandon them there. Since the woodcutter is intimidated by his evil wife he sadly agrees. So Hansel and Gretel are each given one piece of bread and sent out to get firewood. Hansel clues in on what the evil stepmother is doing and he leaves a trail of bread crumbs behind so that they can find their way back again. Unfortunately, the birds come and eat all the bread crumbs and the children have no way to find their way back to the cottage in the pitch black of the towering forest.

Eventually the children stumble upon a small chalet made all of candy. Hansel and Gretel are so hungry that they greedily start to rip off the cookie and chocolate from the house. The dreadful, aged woman appears out of the house and invites the children inside her cottage. The children think that they have found Heaven on Earth, but shortly find out that they were miserably wrong. Hansel and Gretel struggle to get out of their tough situation and Gretel has to learn to stand up for herself and think outside the box before it is too late. Hansel only has so much time; will Gretel be able to play the role of superwoman?Amazon.ca,
external image star4.jpg
I give this book a four out of five star rating!

Peer Reveiw 1. Good job! The pictures and hte plot line are very grabbing, though, the haracter discription gave some of hte ending away to me. but either way, Good Job!

Perri Review 2. This is a good review I liked the pictures they added a lot of detail to your review. Expect i thnk you told to much of the story, you kind of gave it away. But other then that it was good

peer review 3: this is an ok review too much of the story was told in my opiniion but it was done really well and easy to read and stuff.

Mrs B: I enjoyed how you used specific vocabulary to describe the characters - a real strength to your review. Because this is a retelling of an old tale, I would appreciate knowing how you feel about the effectiveness of the retelling. From the images you included I can see that there is a modern interpretation of the brooding evil that underlies this narrative - so what do you think of the illustrations? How do they update - or not - this old tale? Otherwise a very substantial review.