Death in a Nut

By Eric Maddern; Paul Hess (Illustrator)
(Frances Lincoln Children's Books, Hardcover, 9781845070816, 32pp.)

Publication Date: January 2005

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Description

A feisty boy learns a powerful lesson about life and death in this beautifully illustrated story based on a Scottish folktale. When Jack meets Old Man Death coming toward his cottage, he stands firm. "You're not taking my mother!" he cries, and piles into Death with his fists. With each punch, Death gets smaller and smaller until Jack is able to squeeze him inside a hazelnut shell. He throws the nut far out to sea, and goes home. Suddenly trouble begins: eggs won't break, the cockerel's neck "unwrings" itself, and the butcher confesses that he can't slaughter any livestock. What has Jack done? Eric Maddern's droll text and Paul Hess's vivid watercolors enrich this traditional tale about learning one of life's basic truths.

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