4 out of 4 stars
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The Ogre and the Unicorn by Linda Prettyman is an enchanting children's book about kindness, friendship, and compassion. From the beginning, it reads like a fairy tale: "Once there was a beautiful unicorn." The unicorn befriends a sad ogre, and after learning that he has been treated unkindly, she is surprised by the sadness she feels. As the story unfolds, the unlikely friends discover that they have a special connection.
This magical picture book teaches age-appropriate themes of good versus evil, compassion, kindness, rejection, jealousy, friendship, sadness, acceptance, and love to young readers. The fairy tale features a trio of good fairies and a wicked yet pretty witch. Their roles in the story eventually reveal a surprising connection between the unicorn and the ogre, and the friends also learn more about themselves.
Sabrina Van Wagoner illustrates the book beautifully, and I especially like that her colorful illustrations capture the characters' emotions and personalities. The readers can feel the ogre's sadness, see tears of compassion in the eyes of the lovely unicorn, and imagine that the wood fairies are good but slightly mischief. I also appreciate the inclusion of an evil witch who is not stereotypically ugly, which reinforces the message that beauty and goodness do not always go hand in hand.
As the picture book is also exceptionally edited, I am unable to name anything I dislike about this charming story. I can picture an older sibling reading it to younger siblings; the sweet ending is sure to delight children of various ages. Additionally, the delightful illustrations complement the fairy tale perfectly.
It is my pleasure to rate The Ogre and the Unicorn 4 out of 4 stars. It is an excellent story for teaching children about compassion and accepting others. I recommend it to young readers through the age of 10, parents, teachers, and grandparents.
The ogre and the Unicorn
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