The Seven Ravens

Seven Ravens Hero

'The Seven Ravens' is not a story for everyone. It’s thoroughly unmodern. The story features a bad-tempered moon, magic bones used as keys, and parents who accidentally turn their kids into ravens. There are no lessons learned. My children loved this book. I loved it too.

Originally written by the Brothers Grimm in 1812 the dark imagery has inspired generations of illustrators. Many hauntingly beautiful versions of this story have been published over the last 200 years and the talke has morphed somewhat over time.

The version linked here is by the Swiss graphic designer Felix Hoffmann. The illustrations are spectacular. For me, this was a stoop find here in Brooklyn. My kids instantly took to it. The story is somewhat toned from the Grimm original (In the original the sun eats human flesh, and to enter the mountain where her cursed brothers are hidden the girl must cut off her own finger and use it as a key.). Even without the scarier plot points, the basic storyline (brothers are cursed and turned into birds and have to be rescued by their little sister) can be intense for some modern readers… so it’s not for everyone. But the kids who love it will LOVE it.

The book is out of print but can be found on Amazon and other sites that sell used books. Note the preview shown on Amazon is incorrect.