Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Rapunzel” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Rapunzel (Children's and Household Tales #12)

4.16 of 5 stars 4.16  ·  rating details  ·  11,650 ratings  ·  723 reviews
Surely among the most original and gifted of children's book illustrators, Paul O. Zelinsky has once again with unmatched emotional authority, control of space, and narrativecapability brought forth a unique vision for an age-old tale. Few artists at work today can touch the level at which his paintings tell a story and exert their hold.Zelinsky's retelling of Rapunzel rea ...more
Hardcover, 48 pages
Published October 1st 1997 by Dutton Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 1997)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Rapunzel, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Rapunzel

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
So here’s a story, guys. Husband and wife are in love. Wife has crazy cravings. Husband satiates cravings at cost of wife’s baby. Baby raised by sorceress. Sorceress keeps baby locked in a tower from the time she’s twelve, so she never comes in contact with men.

From stage left, in comes the dashing Prince, who pulls himself up Baby’s – now Young Woman’s – hair and enters her tower.

Enters. Her tower.

Rapunzel saw that he was young and handsome; in her own heart she felt a happiness she had never k
Maybe because my teacher said something in class, but I was expecting something different from this book. I thought maybe it would be 'de-constructing' the fairy tale in someway, but instead it was just sort of putting it together in a mismash of various versions, some Grimm, some earlier traditions. The illustrations were interesting, and the abundance of cats in the pictures were nice.
John Yelverton
A very fun story, but it definitely depends on what version you read.
Aiyana Martinez
Paul Zelinksy in my eyes brings the typical story of a young girl stuck up in a tower for years to a modern old time story that tells you more about her story of how she got to up in the tower and her love story after. Zelinksy starts the story off as we all know it by by having a witch trade her herbs for a couples baby. The witch soon takes the baby and hides her from the cruel world she thinks she's in. The story continues to be the same as every Rapunzel told until the witch hurts the man wh ...more
I loved the illustrations in this book, particularly the use of color. (Caldecott Honor book, too.) Great details that could easily be overlooked, too. I also liked reading the history of the fairy tale. I did not know it dated as far back, or know of the many changes that had occurred. In fact, only vaguely do I remember ever hearing a version where Rapunzel was pregnant, and that's why the witch cast her out.

This is also one of those fairy tales that, though I love the aspect of long, gorgeou
The story of Rapunzel was always one of my favorite fairy tales growing up. I was intrigued by the idea of a girl kept hidden in a tower, letting her hair down to let the world in, but never being able to leave that tower. With sumptuous oil paintings that allow the beauty of the tower and Rapunzel with her amazingly-long tresses to be highlighted, the author/illustrator takes readers to a different place and time than their current surroundings. Echoing as he does the style of Italian Renaissan ...more
Ashley Adams
1. Picture Book: Traditional Literature
2. This is the retelling of Rapunzel, the story of a young girl who is forced to grow up in isolation and confinement because a sorceress is hiding her from the king, when she meets a prince who is enchanted by her voice and her long, lustrous hair. She then has to learn how to live on her own after many years of confinement, and is reunited with her prince.
3. Critique:
a. Zelinsky brings the age-old tale of Rapunzel to life with his beautiful illustrations
“Rapunzel” is a Caldecott Medal award winning book from the talented Paul O. Zelinsky and it is a classic Brothers Grimm tale about how a young woman named Rapunzel meets her true love after being trapped in a tower for many years and how she tries to keep this secret from a wicked sorceress. “Rapunzel” is truly a captivating story about true love that many children will love for many years.

Paul O. Zelinsky’s story about a young girl imprisoned in her castle has been a cult classic in the fairy
Mark as A, B, and C
A = In this re-telling of a classic tail, Paul Zelinsky blends the more modern Grimm tale with an older Neapolitan story "Petronsinella". A new husband and soon to be father tries to satisfy his wife's craving for the rapunzel growing in the sorceress's garden next door. Caught stealing, he agree to give his new baby to the sorceress in return. The sorceress raises the child and then places her in the woods in a high tower with no entrance except a high window. The only access
Mariah Olson
Rapunzel is another book I’ve known and read since I was a little girl and is one of those ‘princess locked away in the tower’ books that most young girls love to read about, considering she gets rescued by the handsome prince. The illustrations in this book gave great pictures to go along with the reading by showing the characters vividly and the places they went. The tower was beautifully drawn as well as Rapunzel and the details in her long, braided hair. I loved how the sorceress was shown a ...more
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
Once upon a time there was a happily married couple whose only sorrow was that they did not have a child. Then one day, they learn the woman is pregnant and the sorrow is replaced with joy. The wife liked to sit by the window overlooking a beautiful walled garden owned by a sorceress. One day she saw an abundant bed of the herb rapunzel, and a great need to eat some overcome her. Telling her husband she will die if she doesn't have some, he dutifully climbs down into the garden and steals some. ...more
Monique Clem
Age group: 6-11
Paul O. Zelinsky

The book tells about a man and woman that bare a child after not being able to. Her cravings during pregnancy cause her to be enticed by her sorceress neighbor's rapunzel (parsely) in her garden. Once caught by the sorceress she agrees to let them have the rapunzel only if she gets to keep there child. After getting the child, she names her Rapunzel and she keeps her locked away in a tower until a prince comes by and hears her sing. They fall in love and Ra
Rike Jokanan

What I like about this story is not its happily ever after but it is more on the main character's loooong hair. How can a girl have such a long hair that somebody climbs it to reach where she is without making the owner of the hair gets hurt or the hair lost?

Hey, Girl in the world...
What is Rapunzel’s strength saved in her hair?
I won’t doubt that it is her courage to be alone kept in a very tall tower spelled by a powerful witch. Let’s say the witch symbolizes a cultur
I loved the artwork in this Caldecott winner. Paintings reminiscent of priceless Renaissance art that hangs in museums. Simply beautiful.

But if this were a YA story, I would rip it to shreds. Somehow, this shizz is totally ok for fairy tales. But it just totally got on my nerves.

Art = 5 stars
The story of a kidnapped girl, left alone in a tower, thrown out into the wilds to die when she becomes pregnant by a prince who survives a 50 foot fall only to lose his eyesight, to then only gain it back
Brittney Finck
Rapunzel by Paul O. Zelinsky

Rapunzel is a story that has been retold in many ways and fashions yet Paul O. Zelinsky’s illustrations are one of a kind. The facial expression of the witch cutting Rapunzel’s hair is the perfect example of the emotion captured in these life-like illustrations. The characters are surprisingly human looking which adds to the wonderful story of a kidnapped girl. A common theme among all Rapunzel renditions is the tower. It is obvious that Paul O. Zelinsky realized this
Emily Hollander
Genre: Traditional Literature
Award: Caldecott medal
Grade Levels: K-2

In my classroom, I could use this story for an enjoyable story time for the students. It is a story that takes a young student into another world and allows them to dive into fantasies. This is also a story of good conquering evil, which is an important theme to young readers. A follow up activity could be instruct the students to draw a scene that represents good conquering evil. I could give them some examples from other stori
It was my first time reading this story and I thought it was a little weird. The sorceress was creepy for taking the baby which was Rapunzel away from a couple, also for making Rapunzel live in a tower. However, what I liked about this story was that the prince fell in love with Rapunzel just by listening to her. The illustration are wonderful, it reminds me of the renaissance. Also, I really liked how the prince and Rapunzel reunited and live happily ever after. Overall, even though I think the ...more
Based on the Grimm brothers version of Rapunzel. Gorgeous illustrations.
Mar 01, 2015 Gabby added it
When a woman gets pregnant she desperately craves the purple flower, rapunzel, from the yard next door that belongs to a sorceress. Her husband steals some for her and as he does, the sorceress confronts him and says that he shall pay for his wrongdoing. The sorceress makes him promise to give her his child when it is born in exchange for the rapunzel. The sorceress takes the little girl, Rapunzel, at birth and cares for her. When she is twelve years old, the sorceress locks her away from the wo ...more
Ashlynn Pope
One day this married supple longed to have a child. Then the wife noticed her white dress getting tighter and realized she was pregnant. With them excited the wife started to long for the plant rapunzle that was planted. The husband went a few times down and got caught by a sorceress and said that the only way the wife can have more of this delicious plant is if they give her their first born. When she was born the sorceress took the baby and hid her in a tower in the woods. One day a prince fou ...more
Lauren Gallaspy
The story of Rapunzel is one that tells about the girl who gets taken by an evil sorceresses who locks her in a far away high tower with no access besides a window on the highest part on the tower. As Rapunzel is singing aloud one day a prince happens to over hear her beautiful voice and decides he must see who has such a beautiful voice. Over time they begin to fall in love, get married and become pregnant but to much dismay from the sorceress who may make it impossible for Rapunzel to be with ...more
The illustrations in this book are so beautiful! Zelinsky has done an amazing job retelling this tale through his amazing illustrations. The colors are soft and rich and bring on a sense of “old-time” wonder, along with the story. He really brings you back to a time and place when this story would have happened. This book is a good example of traditional literature that children will enjoy looking through and reading at all ages, although the book is rated for 3rd-5th grade. I think the text is ...more
Andrea Gorrondona
This book provides a much different retelling of Brothers Grimm fairytale than Disney's Tangled. While any version of this tale is going to unrealistic, I found this one to be especially so. It was just a strange retelling to me. However, this might be because I am older. I think a child could probably look past that and enjoy the story. It seems appropriate for elementary school aged children. The language seems appropriate and contains some challenging words. The story is an appropriate length ...more
I found this book to be a great fairy tale that we all knew while growing up. The idea of stealing something as little as an herb leads to consequences. The man and woman get their daughter stolen and she is named after the herb the mother craved, Rapunzel. The sorceress takes pity on the parents but takes the child in return to raise her and eventually lock her in a tower only to visit her. Love prevails despite the situation and even with becoming pregnant and being banished by the sorceress, ...more
The story of "Rapunzel" is another timeless classic for the ages. It begins with Rapunzel being born, but unfortunately she is born in a time when her parents are in debt to the evil sorceress. Therefore, the sorceress ends up getting to keep Rapunzel to raise on her own. When the sorceress begins to notice Rapunzel's beautiful hair continue to grow she decides to lock her up at the top of a mighty tower where nobody can reach her. One day a Prince stumbles across her beautiful singing voice and ...more
Emma Mcmurtrie
This story is about a couple that for so long was unable to have a child. But one spring she finds out she is pregnant. She would gaze out her window to the enclosed garden of Rapunzel. She craved it so much that she asked her husband to sneak into the garden and get some of the Rapunzel. He does so twice, the first time only increased his wife’s desire for the herb. The second time however, he is caught in the act by the sorceress who demands to have their new born child in exchange for his wif ...more
Howie Kahekili
Rapunzel by Paul O. Zelinsky was the Caldecott winner in 1998. This version of the inspiring version of Rapunzel has a lot of great dynamics that other books may not. In Rapunzel the story starts off with a couple who is in want of having a baby. When the wife does get pregnant she is in need of Rapunzel because she is becoming ill, the husband fetches Rapunzel many times until he gets caught. The sorceress tells the man I will let you save your wife in return for your baby to come. When the bab ...more
Jordyn Oakland
This story has a very interesting twist; it is a mix of the folktale of Rapunzel but also the Grimm Brothers version. It is about a young couple expecting a child and a wife craving the herb Rapunzel but the husband is caught in the act and a sorceress demands their newborn baby. The story then takes on a more familiar version of a young girl trapped in a tower with extremely long, beautiful hair and a prince comes to save her. The illustration throughout the novel convey a very historical and r ...more
Ziwei Cheng
"Rapunzel" is about a couple because eating the lettuce neighbor witch, pregnancy gave birth to a little girl. Witch in order to punish them, and put their daughter away, into a tall tower, and named Rapunzel. Every witch up, should Rapunzel down long braids, she can climb. There once was a passing prince discovered the secret, the prince climb, fell in love with Rapunzel. Witch discover the secret, furious, the Rapunzel braids cut off and put her into the wilderness to fend for themselves. Prin ...more
Abby Ratliff
Rapunzel reamins true to its original story, but the illustrations in this book are gorgeous. Sometimes traditional literature can be boring, but the story did not ramble. It was all of the good parts with none of the fluff. This would make a wonderful read aloud or a writing workshop on fables. Also, the authors note from Paul O. Zelinsky is quite wonderful.

Genre- Traditional literature
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
tangled movies ending hair cut 10 66 May 23, 2014 10:22AM  
  • Saint George and the Dragon
  • Golem
  • The Fool of the World and the Flying Ship
  • Drummer Hoff
  • Frog Went a-Courtin'
  • The Three Pigs
  • Prayer for a Child
  • Smoky Night
  • The Twelve Dancing Princesses
  • Arrow to the Sun
  • Glass Slipper, Gold Sandal: A Worldwide Cinderella
  • The Glorious Flight: Across the Channel with Louis Bleriot July 25, 1909
  • The Lion and the Mouse
  • May I Bring a Friend?
  • One Fine Day
  • Black and White
  • Duffy and the Devil
  • Ashanti to Zulu: African Traditions
Born 1953

Paul O. Zelinsky grew up in Wilmette, Illinois, the son of a mathematics professor and a medical illustrator. He drew compulsively from an early age, but did not know until college that this would be his career. As a Sophomore in Yale College he enrolled in a course on the history and practice of the picture book, co-taught by an English professor and Maurice Sendak. This experience inspi
More about Paul O. Zelinsky...

Other Books in the Series

Children's and Household Tales (1 - 10 of 60 books)
  • Cat and Mouse in Partnership
  • The Story of the Youth Who Went Forth to Learn What Fear Was
  • The Wolf and the Seven Little Goats: A Fairy Tale
  • The Adventures of Chanticleer and Partlet
  • Hansel and Gretel
  • The White Snake
  • The Straw, the Coal, and the Bean
  • The Fisherman & His Wife
  • Seven at One Blow: A Tale from the Brothers Grimm
  • Cinderella
Rumpelstiltskin Hansel and Gretel The Wheels on the Bus Knick Knack Paddywhack (New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Books (Awards)) The Maid And The Mouse And The Odd Shaped House:  A Story In Rhyme (A Puffin Unicorn)

Share This Book