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Liesl Shurtliff was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah, with the mountains for her playground. Just like Rump, Liesl was shy about her name, growing up. Not only did it rhyme with weasel, she could never find it on any of those personalized key chains in gift shops. But over the years she's grown to love having an unusual name--and today she wouldn't change it for the world! Before she became a writer, Liesl graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in music, dance, and theater. Her first three books, Rump, Jack and Red are all New York Times bestsellers and Rump was named to over two dozen state award lists and won an ILA Children's Book Award. She lives in Chicago with her family, where she continues to spin fairy tales. Visit her at lieslshurtliff.com
Gr 3-6-A beguiling take on a classic tale. In The Kingdom, one's name is full of meaning and power, and young Rump is sure that his is incomplete. Just before his mother died in childbirth, she only managed to utter, "His name is Rump.." And so Rump grows up with his grandmother, mining the mountain for specks of gold for their greedy king and suffering ridicule for his name. Shurtliff's world-building is inventive and immediately believable: gnomes rush about delivering messages they have somewhat memorized, gold-craving pixies are flying and biting nuisances, and wise witches live in the woods, as does a band of huge smelly trolls. All the elements of the original story are here-the greedy miller, the somewhat dimwitted daughter, and Rump's magical ability to spin straw into gold-but Shurtliff fleshes out the boy's backstory, developing an appealing hero who is coping with the curse of his magical skills while searching for his true name and destiny. This captivating fantasy has action, emotional depth, and lots of humor.-Caroline Ward, The Ferguson Library, Stamford, CT (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
People Magazine, August 12, 2013: "A fresh riff on the Grimm Brothers' Rumpelstiltskin, told with wit from the impish point of view of the troublemaker himself." The Denver Post, May 6, 2013: "A startlingly original book." Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews, March 15, 2013: "As good as gold." School Library Journal, May, 2013: "A beguiling take on a classic tale.... This captivating fantasy has action, emotional depth, and lots of humor." BookPage, April 9, 2013: "Shurtliff takes the traditional fairy tale and turns it on its head, interspersing humor with tenderness, action with insight. Rump shows the other side of Rumpelstiltskin, one of the most vilified characters in fairy tales, and reminds readers that in a good story, very little is as it seems." "Liesl Shurtliff does more than spin words into gold--she gets us rooting for Rumpelstiltskin, a most magical feat." --Kirby Larson, Newbery Honor-winning author of Hattie Big Sky "Lighthearted and inventive, Rump amusingly expands a classic tale." --Brandon Mull, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Fablehaven