O'Sullivan Stew by Hudson Talbott
(Picture Puffins)

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Synopsis

In the grandest of Irish traditions comes a tale full of imagination, wit, courage, and a healthy shot of blarney. Ah, the luck of the Irish! When the village of Crookhaven faces its doom for having upset the local witch, Kate O'Sullivan decides to set things right—and almost gets her family hanged in the process! Now with both a king and a witch angry at them, Kate valiantly fights for her family's lives the only way she knows how—with a good story. She pulls out all the stops trying to appease His Majesty, recounting tales of ravenous giants, wise-cracking sea serpents, and lovesick leprechauns running amok. But time is running out. Will the king's patience as well? It's all up to Kate and her magical way with words. Hudson Talbott, creator of the popular Tales of King Arthur books, was inspired by his visit to Ireland to spin this brand new adventure story and his glorious paintings bring the island and his valiant heroine to life.
 

About Hudson Talbott

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In His Own Words... "Children's book authors have to be among the luckiest people in the world. Not only am I paid to do what I love most, but I get to do it without having to grow up. More accurately, the seven-year-old I Hudson is no longer relegated to an ever-receding file in the memory bank hut is once again out-front, fully engaged, sometimes even calling the shots in an active collaboration with Lis adult counterpart. "I'll always be grateful for the solid, all-American upbringing I was given in the suburbs of Louisville, Kentucky, but going to school in Rome was a revelation for me. After graduating from Tyler School of Art in Rome, I extended my education by wandering through Europe, settling in Amsterdam for a few years, and then moving to Hong Kong, where I dabbled in the fashion industry. My travels eventually continued through Southeast Asia and culminated with four magical months in Bali. I finally reached New York, fulfilling a childhood ambition, in 1974. Although my original intent was to become a painter, the free-lance illustration work I picked tip to support myself soon predominated as my primary art form. Pursuing my vision in this direction eventually led to writing and illustrating children's books. I had always told stories with pictures. I began to paint with words. "My series of picture books on the Arthurian legends represents the most ambitious and challenging opportunity that I've ever accepted. Called the central myth of Western civilization by philosopher Joseph Campbell, the Arthurian legends have been evolving over a 1,500 year period, along the way gathering tip and expressing our concepts of love, honor, and courage. Only within the last century have they taken the form of adventure novels for younger readers, and I know of no other attempt to compile the entire cycle into a series of picture books until now. The sheer scale of the material-the vast array of characters and the complexity of their relationships-is beyond Dickens or even "Days of Our Lives." "The curious occurrence that I've experienced as I've delved deeper through the layers of allegory in my research is that as the underlying truth is revealed to me, I'm not only learning something new about the fine art of storytelling but usually something about myself as well. The first three books, for example, are about Arthur coming into his greatness. In the first book it is thrust upon him by accident of his birth, and in the second he achieves it through his own actions. Finally, in the third, he comes to realize the greatness inherent within himself, as it is within all of us. It is the kind of greatness that finds expression when we finally accept ourselves and embrace the roles open to us in lifewhether it is that of king, gardener, parent, or children's book author. "My gratitude is boundless for all those who have Supported my creative progress and believed in me long before I believed in myself. By recognizing that writing and illustrating books for young readers is, in fact, my calling, I can serve a greater purpose than fulfilling my own needs. I am reminded of what I heard a blues singer once say: "Talent is God's gift to you. What you do with it is your gift to Him.
 
Published January 25, 1999 by Putnam Juvenile. 48 pages
Genres: Nature & Wildlife, Travel, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Action & Adventure. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for O'Sullivan Stew

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Clever Kate O’Sullivan cooks up a feast of family stories to save her and her kins’ lives.

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Publishers Weekly

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A witch, sea serpent, giant, fairies and wild beasts are among the staples in Talbott's (We're Back: A Dinosaur's Story; Amazon Diary) bubbly story, set on the coast of Ireland. Trouble begins when th

Jan 04 1999 | Read Full Review of O'Sullivan Stew (Picture Puff...

Publishers Weekly

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A witch, sea serpent, giant, fairies and wild beasts are among the staples in Talbott's (We're Back: A Dinosaur's Story;

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Publishers Weekly

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A feisty Irish girl sets out to save her village from starvation.

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