Tuesday, March 13, 2018

The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf

The Story of Ferdinand
by Munro Leaf [jP Lea] 

Having recently seen and enjoyed the animated film Ferdinand, which was based on this children’s picture book, I wanted to revisit the source material.

This is a simple story, of a Spanish bull who is more interested in the sights and smells of butterflies and beautiful flowers than he is in the physical feats of daring-do that his fellow young bulls engage in, in order to impress the bullfighters enough to win their way into the bullfighting ring. The story by Munro Leaf, with art by Robert Lawson, is sweet, and comical. I hadn’t read it since I was a child myself, back in the late 1960s. And I remember both reading and listening to it as a thin floppy plastic record LP that accompanied my childhood copy of the book.

However, having just enjoyed the animated film version (2017) of the story, I can say that the filmmakers expanded the tale, adding many layers of depth to the storyline, including Ferdinand’s acquired knowledge of the ultimate fate of any bulls that make it into the bullfighting ring. Knowing these story elements, and then not seeing them reflected in the original story, makes we wish the picture book had touched on those elements too! None-the-less, The Story of Ferdinand is a charming little story, that hasn’t lost any of that charm despite it having been first published in 1936! I still strongly recommend it!

[ Penguin Random House’s official The Story of Ferdinand web site ] | [ Wikipedia page for Munro Leaf ]

Recommended by Scott C.
Bennett Martin Public Library

Have you read this one? What did you think? Did you find this review helpful?

New reviews appear every month on the Staff Recommendations page of the BookGuide website. You can visit that page to see them all, or watch them appear here in the BookGuide blog individually over the course of the entire month. Click the tag for the reviewer's name to see more of this reviewers recommendations!

No comments: