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Cold Iron.

COLD IRON. Sophie Masson. 1998/2004. Read by Esther Van Doornum. 5 cds. 6 hrs. Bolinda Audio. 1-74093-559-4. $40.00. Vinyl; plot notes. JS

The poor servant girl, Malkin, tells this story of Tattercoats and the great adventures that lead a little group of unlikely friends to their true destinations. The story has many layers and pulls from numerous sources of fairy folklore and Elizabethan history. With hints of Cinderella and Midsummer Night's Dream, this is a complex blend of characters and plots. With a sure, clear voice, Van Doornum's multi-voiced reading clearly defines all the characters. From the old grandfather, Baron of Fisher Forest, to the lighter tones of the mysterious Pug and the cool Oberon, the male voices ring true. Tattercoats and Malkin, who eventually discover their mutual heritage, are given distinct vocal expression. Van Doornum's slight Australian accent adds to the romantic feeling of this magical fantasy. Timeless themes of friendship, betrayal and family are smoothly blended with well-chosen music weaving the chapters together. Masson's book is wonderful but the real joy of this story vividly comes to life with the skills of the talented, articulate reader. Sally Tibbetts, LRC, Maine West HS, Des Plaines, IL

J--Recommended for junior high school students. The contents are particular interest to young adolescents and their teachers.

S--Recommended for senior high school students.
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Author:Tibbetts, Sally
Article Type:Audiobook review
Date:May 1, 2006
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