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East of the Sun & West of the Moon
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East of the Sun & West of the Moon

4.37 of 5 stars 4.37  ·  rating details  ·  829 ratings  ·  49 reviews
"Mayer's telling is an interweaving of plot elements from the original Scandinavian fairy tale with inventions of his own and details from The Frog Prince. The spellbound frog is whisked off to the trolls' castle and the ungrateful lass loses her chance to marry a handsome prince until she creates a happy ending, having atoned for her mistake".--Publishers Weekly. Full col ...more
Paperback, 46 pages
Published May 1st 1987 by Aladdin Paperbacks (first published 1980)
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East by Edith PattouSun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day GeorgeIce by Sarah Beth DurstEast o' the Sun and West o' the Moon by Peter Christen AsbjørnsenOnce Upon a Winter's Night by Dennis L. McKiernan
East of the Sun and West of the Moon
8th out of 24 books — 99 voters
The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. TolkienThe Hobbit by J.R.R. TolkienThe Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas AdamsThe Odyssey by HomerThe Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
Best Fictional Journey
34th out of 165 books — 73 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,514)
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Not my favorite version of the story - the beginning is especially different. The illustrations are lovely, but just a little 'off.'
A version of a Norwegian folktale, I absolutely loved Mercer Mayer's story and especially the illustrations. A beautiful young girl is sent on a mission to help cure her ailing father, which involves getting a cup of water from the South Wind's home. When she finally reaches her destination, she is assisted by a frog who asks for three wishes in payment. She agrees and later the frog comes by to visit her as his first wish. His second is that she come with him and be his wife, to which she refus ...more
Little added; much lost.

The illustrations, though to me somehow slightly cold and unpleasantly modern, are rich and skillful.

However, I dislike the alteration of the story to be part "The Frog Prince" and part "East o' the Sun and West o' the Moon." In my mind, the most foolish thing you can possibly do with a fairytale where a white bear arrives on your doorstep, asking for your youngest daughter that he may carry her far away to his castle, is switch that great bristling icy bear for a little

A different take on the East of the Sun, West of the Moon tale in which the snooty girl undergoes quite the transformation. This is no Snow White or Cinderella, starting off all good and perfect. This girl has her nose in the air and needs to learn a lesson in Real Life – which she does, and then shows her true colors of willing to lean in and put her effort in for the long haul. With the payback of rescuing the prince all by herself and winning a kingdom. Sandberg would approve.

And oh, the ill
Kathleen Houlihan
My favorite Mercer Mayer picture book ever -- the story is totally different from the Norwegian version by the same title. This is more like the princess and the pond (or the golden ball, whatever you've heard it as), where a princess loses a silver cup in the well and a frog retrieves it for you but extracts a promise from the girl to marry him. When he comes to collect, the princess refuses and flings him against a wall...and this is where things get weird: goblins come out of the wall and the ...more
I read this book so many times as a child that my copy is falling apart. I loved the illustrations so much that I still think of them from time to time. My rating is supremely biased in that I was read this when I was little and grew up with it, but I absolutely adore this book and just had to say so!
I really liked this book. Mercer Mayer isn't my favorite illustrator of all time, but there were some great pictures in here! I especially loved the scary creatures frozen in ice and the host of demons carrying away the youth. The story is easily readable, not too long, but good level of detail and interesting. My kids listened to it twice in a row.
Dec 21, 2008 Kittiya rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone, It's a great read! But mostly to little girl's looking for a herion.
Recommended to Kittiya by: my grandmother & grandfather
Shelves: my-favorite, children
This is my all time favorite book. I was given this book when I was a young child. I would make anyone who was willing read this to me, then later I would read it to myself over & over. As an adult I love reading this to my daughter... though she is not as enamored with this story as I am. I love the fact that I can share this with her.
One of the reasons this story appealed to me as a child was there was a heroin instead of a hero. I liked other points to the story also... such as the life
My absolute favorite children's book. The artwork is divine and the story is inspirational!
This is one of my all-time favorite books, principally because of the art (the story is good, though--albeit quirky.

This was a cherished book from my childhood, and the art stuck with me over the years, haunting me. I've been searching in physical bookstores for a copy for years, but finally had to resort to finding it online. Thank goodness for the Internet! I recently tracked down a used copy for about $30. I've just finished rereading it for the first time in a couple of decades, and I can r
Hope Renea
Amazing book I read with the little guy I babysit. Wonderful story!
Jul 04, 2007 Serena rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: kids
I didn't find this book, 'Shibumi and the Kite Maker' or Mercer's version of 'Beauty and the Beast' until later. I did grow up reading 'Everyone Knows What a Dragon Looks Like' though. While the author has many popular books, these ones with their amazing illustrations are just so special.
This is a retelling of the classic Norwegian fairytale about a princess who needs to rescue a prince from the castle of the goblins. What makes this book so special is not the story (it can be found in a myriad of places,) but for the outstanding artwork which is painted in the same vein as the old illustrations in Grimm's Fairy Tales.
I am a lifelong lover of fairytales, and this adaptation of a Scandinavian fairytale captivated me at the age of six. I regret that I've never been able to find a copy in print. My heart would sing if I could find one! Mayer is a masterful storyteller and illustrator!
Dec 16, 2007 Mimi rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Everyone
Shelves: favorite
This book is really special to me. When I was little I only got to read it with my mother. I use to beg her to read it to me. I love this book it reminds me of snuggling in my parents bed and feeling so special and the best part was falling asleep to my mothers voice
The series of fairy tales this book belongs to are some of the most beautifully drawn books I've ever seen. I've loved them from childhood and always will. This version of 'East of the Sun West of the Moon' is good, with a very elegiac tone.
Bonnie Hopkinson
Another favorite illustrated book from my childhood. I wish these weren't out of print! Such an amazing journey, and the beautiful picturesque illustrations by Mercer Mayer. I love a good fairytale. This one's a delight for me and my children.
Yes, it's a children's picture book. But I've read several novels based on this folktale, so I decided to skim through this. The pictures were wonderful, but the story kind of dragged on. Oh, well. It was meant for kids.
P is for Polly
This is a very important folk tale to me. After reading several Chinese myths lately, I am wondering if the origins of this tale are from the East. The story might make more sense as a Chinese folk tale.
one of my favorite fairy tales. the imagination breaks long on this geography: east of any sunshine and west of any moonlight, that is beyond the beyond in every direction. life is very special there.
Abby Whittredge
This is one of the most beautifully illustrated books I have ever seen. My two year old son sits on the floor and "reads" this book probably once a week. It is so visually appealing.
(Picture Book)"The Moon, Father Forest, Great Fish of the Sea, and North Wind help a maiden rescue her true love from a troll princess in a faraway kingdom."
Kathy Blose
Beautiful artwork and beautiful fairy tale! I love his version of this story. I got this for my daughter's library many years ago. It is a classic~ Kathy Blose
An original take on the Frog Prince fairy tale with the most beautiful illustrations. A must have for any child's book collection.
This book as a child fascinated me with it story and its illustrations. Every time I am in a library or book store I look for it.
For those of you who love fairy tales, this is a beautifully illustrated version. Mercer Mayer takes his children's art to the next level.
i'm familiar with a variation of this story which has a longer text, but this telling excells in illustrations. it's a good read.
Christopher Clough
Some of the most stunning illustration ever in a children's book...words really can't capture how beautiful this book is.
This is my favorite children's book. The pictures are beautiful and the story is great. In short, a must-read.
Megan D. Neal
A mixture of the Frog Prince and East of the Sun fairy tales, with Mercer Mayer's unique touches and glorious pictures.
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I began illustrating books in 1966. Since that time I have published over 300 books. Most of my books are about things that happened to me when I was a little kid. Now I'm a big kid and I write about things that happen now, especially with my own children. They always remind me of what it was like.

I was born in Arkansas in 1943. Boy, that was a long time ago! It's real fun to be an old kid. Then m
More about Mercer Mayer...
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