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‘We need the literature of other countries to expand our
horizons and stimulate our ideas. Without it, we are not only
diminished, we are starved’
(The Times, Magnus Linklater 29/06/05)
Pinocchio (Fulvio Testa)
by Carlo Collodi
Age Range: 9-11
Originally written for the Giornale dei bambini, a Rome children’s magazine, Pinocchio only appeared in book format in 1883. It was first translated into English in 1892 and there have been numerous translations and adaptations into English ever since. As well as having been translated into many other languages throughout the world, Pinocchio became internationally recognised when Walt Disney made a film of it in 1940.
This is the universally well-known story of the wooden puppet carved from a piece of pine wood by Geppetto, the poor woodcarver, who lives in a small Italian village. Geppetto loves Pinocchio dearly and although the wayward puppet does love his father he finds it almost impossible to be good. From the moment Pinocchio is created he has a mind of his own and more than anything he longs to be a real boy.
When Pinocchio meets the Blue Fairy she promises to grant his wish if he can demonstrate that he is brave, loyal and honest, but Pinocchio just loves having fun and is easily tempted into making the wrong decisions. As he stumbles from one misadventure to another will he ever learn the difference between right and wrong?
Geoffrey Brock’s unabridged translation conveys all the wit of Collodi’s original story in this sumptuous illustrated version by international renowned artist Fulvio Testa. Pinocchio has been illustrated many times before, including the hauntingly beautiful illustrations of Roberto Innocenti, as well as being given the Disney treatment. Fabio Testa’s fifty full pages of pen, ink and watercolor cartoon-like artwork help to lighten the tone, softening some of the darker scenes in the story such as when Pinocchio burns off his feet, while at the same time enhancing the humour of Pinocchio’s mischievous nature. This is a welcome addition to the many Pinocchio versions published throughout the years with its fresh translation and winsome illustrations.