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The King’s Equal (Greek translation)
ISBN 960 16 0263
Written by Katherine Paterson and illustrated by Marjorie van Heerden.
Patakis Publishers (Athens, Greece) [2001]

A selfish, conceited prince is tormented by the dying words of his wise father, the benevolent king: "You will not wear my crown until the day you marry a woman who is your equal in beauty, intelligence and wealth." Raphael's vanity prevents him from finding such a bride until an unknown maiden appears at the palace. Sent by a mysterious talking wolf, Rosamund dazzles Raphael with her beauty, her intelligence (she is the first to recognizes his loneliness) and her wealth ("There is nothing I desire that I do not already possess"). However, she refuses his proposal of marriage, pointing out that, by his own admission, she is more than equal to him; his task is to earn her love. Illuminating the six chapters are Vagin's elegantly detailed paintings, each featuring a smaller bordered scene laid atop a full-page illustration: the opulent scarlet and golds of the royal interiors are strikingly juxtaposed with the smoky blues and greens of the lush countryside; pewter-toned borders surround the text itself. The richness of both word and image renders an entertaining and enchanting story.

Ages 7-10.

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