The Little Mermaid (Pop-Up Classics) by Robert Sabuda was released this week and my copy arrived a few days ago. Pop-up fairy tales are an auto buy for me and I preordered the book last December. That's what I do. And really, when is Matthew Reinhart's Sleeping Beauty going to appear? I'm waiting. :)
But back to Little Mermaid which is here:
First of all, for Little Mermaid purists, this is Hans Christian Andersen's version with the seafoam and "children of the air" ending. So purists will love it. Disney fans maybe not so much.
As always, the pop-ups are amazing. My personal favorites are when her tail is transformed into legs and when she emerges from the water as you open the page. There are many little surprises like that with elaborate paper constructs that few pop-up engineers achieve. This time Sabuda's stained glass style illustrations with heavy black lines and jewel tone colors capture the sea and land colors beautifully. There are faint allusions to early illustrators, such as Edmund Dulac, and the mermaid's hair is red, which hearkens to Disney, but that is about all for the Disney influences. And really, who can blame that since the red hair has become iconic since Disney released the film almost 25 years ago. (Which makes me wonder why they didn't wait until next year to rerelease it for the anniversary. Cause if you didn't know, the new Disney Blu-Ray edition is also released this month.)
A beloved under-the-sea tale is now a pop-up masterpiece, from expert craftsman Robert Sabuda.
Come along on a magical journey under the sea in this stunning pop-up adaptation of the beloved fairy tale “The Little Mermaid,” expertly crafted by renowned paper engineer Robert Sabuda. Amazing three-dimensional paper structures pop off each page, bringing this classic underwater adventure to life. This visually stunning tale of adventure, true love, and sacrifice is sure to become a favorite in any story-lover’s library.
And since pop-ups have to be experienced, there is thankfully a video that will give you a small taste: