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The Persian Cinderella by Shirley Climo

The Persian Cinderella

by Shirley Climo, Robert Florczak (Illustrator)

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The story of the Persian Cinderella is a different version of the traditional Cinderella we are familiar with. It takes place in the Mediterranean. The story and the illustrations give us so many details on the differences between cultures form the way they dress to how they live in their houses. The story follows the typical order where the princess is an unhappy, lonely kind hearted woman who meets her prince but the evilness of her stepsisters gets in the way. As most fairy tales, the princess overcomes evil and is able to live happily ever after. ( )
  cvarela | Sep 27, 2014 |
“The Persian Cinderella” is a wonderful international book for students to read. This book will take students on adventure to the far away country of Ancient Persia; it shows the student how people in Persia used to dress and how they used to act. The main purpose of this story is very similar to the original Cinderella, which is to follow your dreams not matter what may come your way. The author did a great job of depicting what life in Persia might be like and she did a great job at describing the emotions in this book. For example at one point the Prince was sad and she depicted this by saying, “He plucked the hairs from his beard.” One can get a great visual of the Prince’s anguish at losing his Cinderella. So the imagery in this book amazing sometimes the reader didn’t even have to look at the pictures, or the reader could smell what the author was describing. ( )
  brandib90 | Sep 16, 2013 |
Motherless Settareh, so named because of the star-shaped birthmark on her cheek ("Settareh" meaning "star" in Persian), grows up in the women's quarters of her father's house, alternately ignored or harassed by her stepmother, stepsisters, aunts, and female cousins. Given a gold coin by her father, in order to buy new clothes for Prince Mehrdad's upcoming No Ruz (New Year) celebration, Settareh instead gives most of her holiday money to a beggar, using what little is left to buy an cracked old bottle. Her kinswomen are convinced that, contrary to her father's instruction, she has not chosen wisely. But the pari - a magical fairy - residing in her bottle proves differently, producing gorgeous clothing that allows Settareh to attend the No Ruz celebration after all...

As mentioned in my review of Shirley Climo's The Korean Cinderella, another of her four Cinderella retellings (see also: The Egyptian Cinderella and The Irish Cinderlad), I find the titles used for these books, including The Persian Cinderella, rather problematic. This tale, after all, is no more "the Persian Cinderella" than Cinderella is "the French Settareh," and while I understand the need for marketing, and for reader appeal (what better way to draw in fairytale lovers young and old, than to describe this as a "Cinderella" story?), I wish that a culturally specific name had been used, with any parallel to other traditions confined either to the description, or to a subtitle. Something after the fashion of Petrosinella: A Neopolitan Rapunzel, which happens to be my favorite variant of the "Rapunzel" tale-type.

That said, I did find the actual story here, taken from that classic collection, Tales from the Thousand and One Nights, where it is known as The Anklet, very engaging. I also appreciated that, this time around, Climo actually named her textual source material! The cultural details - Settareh lives in the women's quarters; Prince Mehrdad is unable to search for the mysterious anklet-owner, because he cannot visit women in their homes - offer a fascinating glimpse of another place and time. The illustrations by Robert Florczak, which a friend has astutely compared to the work of Maxfield Parrish, are appealing. All in all, despite my critique of the title, this is a book I would recommend to young fairytale lovers, and to readers interested in international variants of the "persecuted heroine" tale-type. ( )
  AbigailAdams26 | Apr 25, 2013 |
A good story for a girl or buy who enjoys princess stories, the Persian Cinderella is fortunate because of her kindness to others.
  kellw | Feb 22, 2013 |
A traditional Persian tale that parallels the Western Cinderella fairy tale. ( )
  tomfriesejr | Dec 16, 2012 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Shirley Climoprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Florczak, RobertIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
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Book description
In this tale, the familiar Cinderella story is infused with a Persian setting, values, and traditions. The subtle variations to the western story, along with colorful illustrations, give the reader a better understanding of 15th Century Persia.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0064438538, Paperback)

In this jewel-like version of a classic story, popular folklorist Shirley Climo tells the tale of Settareh, the Persian Cinderella. Magic enables Settareh to outsmart two jealous stepsisters and win the heart of a prince. But where most Cinderella stories end, poor Sattareh's troubles are only beginning! The unexpected plot twists will enchant readers as they rediscover the familiar tale in the lush setting of long-ago Persia. Shirley Climo's authentic details bring the story to life, and Robert Florczak's stunning paintings echo the vibrant colors and motifs of an ancient land.

01-02 TX Bluebonnet Award Masterlist

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:49:49 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

A retelling of the traditional Persian tale in which Settareh, neglected and abused by her stepmother and stepsisters, finds her life transformed with the help of a little blue jug.

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