Beauty and the Beast (Ursula Jones/Sarah Gibb)

Another fairy tale for you today!  Both this book and yesterday's were birthday gifts for Little Sis, by the way.

This is Beauty and the Beast [Orchard Books UK, 2012], retold by Ursula Jones and illustrated by Sarah Gibb.  I've mentioned Sarah Gibb before, as she illustrated the Emily Windsnap series.  She is best-known in the U.S., I think, for her gorgeous picture book version of Rapunzel.  

The illustrations are truly gorgeous.  Little Sis's copy is a sturdy paperback.  It definitely makes me want to seek out more from this duo, particularly The Princess Who Had No Kingdom.

I love "Beauty and the Beast" as a fairy tale so much.  While I appreciate the Disney version (that library!), this is the reason I first fell in love with the story:  the Shelley Duvall's Faerie Tale Theatre version that ran on Showtime in the U.S. in 1984.

Of course, the Faerie Tale Theatre version lifts heavily from the exquisite French film version, directed by Jean Cocteau in 1946.  It's available on Hulu if you live in the United States (see below).  No YouTube link, or I would post that instead. It is so worth hunting down to watch if you have never seen it.  Truly, this is one of the most beautiful films ever made.

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  1. The movie from Cocteau had scared me as a child (what can I say, the Beast was scary looking LOL) but I appreciated more as I grew older. Belle's dresses were beyond beautiful and I was mesmerized by the story. It always made me a little sad though and because of that, I prefer other fairy tales stories. The illustrations from your book are amazing!!! Love the silhouette drawings and the view of the rooms!

    1. I didn't see it until I was a teenager, but the Faerie Tale Theatre version borrows heavily from it, even down to the Beast's makeup and costume. It was always my favorite, even though it wasn't funny, and as always, I preferred the Beast to the prince. :) Have you checked out Sarah Gibb's Rapunzel yet? It's gorgeous.

  2. ok. you are SO awesome. i've never seen the Cocteau version and I'm gonna get right on that, as I've been meaning to do that for YRS!!! this book is amazing! i'd love to find that princess with no kingdom thing!

    the other day we watched Rumpelstiltskin on Faerie Tale Theatre, soooooooo fab, I'll encourage J that we need to watch the Beauty and the Beast episode!!!

    1. I found out that the second graders at our school have been watching Faerie Tale Theatre episodes in their drama class (yay, performing arts magnet!), as part of a unit about reading scripts. Big Sis has already seen them, so she just sits back and enjoys! I love the Rumpelstiltskin FTT. There are certain *funny* FTTs that I love very much - The Frog Prince, especially - but my favorites tend to be more dramatic. And yes, watch the Cocteau version, especially after watching the FTT. It's funny how much they borrowed!


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