The bottle imp

Author Stevenson, Robert Louis,
Language English
New York: Clarion Books, 1996


Also issued as Recorded Books Fiction on Cassette.

Subjects :

  • Magic
  • Supernatural
  • Fiction
  • Adventure stories
  • Readers (Secondary
  • Short stories, English

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Author Illustrator(s) :

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Best Books :

  • Kaleidoscope, A Multicultural Booklist for Grades K-8, Third Edition, 2001 National Council of Teachers of English

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Reading Measurement Programs:

Clarion Books (New York:) 1996.

Reading Counts-Scholastic
Interest Level 3-5
Reading Level 6
Accelerated Reader Points 4

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Reviews :

Hazel Rochman (Booklist, Feb. 15, 1996 (Vol. 92, No. 12))
Would you sell your soul to the devil? For wealth? To save the one you love? This tale of a genie in a bottle is part Arabian Nights fantasy, part Faust, with an intricately twisting story of love and adventure that shows how good and evil get all mixed up. First published in Samoa in 1891, when Stevenson was living in the South Seas, it's illustrated here with Mair's lush full-page paintings that openly evoke Gauguin in their views of the tropical islands and the people. The hero Keawe from Hawaii buys a magic bottle that will give him all he desires--provided he sells it, at a lower price, before he dies; otherwise he will burn in hell forever. Every time he gets his heart's desire, including the woman he loves, disaster comes along with the happiness. Suspense builds as the bottle gets sold from hand to hand at a lower and lower price. No one wants to be left with the accursed thing. The ending is a cop-out (they have to dump that bottle on someone else), but the combination of the supernatural and the very human struggle with greed and envy makes for a moving story. The crisis when Keawe and his wife each secretly try to save each other is a drama of love and redemption. Category: Middle Readers. 1996, Clarion, $16.95. Gr. 4-7.
(PUBLISHER: Clarion Books (New York:), PUBLISHED: 1996.)

Mary Sue Preissner (Children's Literature)
Reminiscent of Gauguin, Mair has used rich jewel tones to illustrate Stevenson's romantic story of Keawe and Kokua. Set in Hawaii, Keawe has purchased a magic bottle, which grants wishes. Stipulations with the bottle are that it will not provide immortality; that should the owner die before passing it along, he will "burn in hell for ever;" those not content with its gifts will experience tragedy; and it must be resold at a loss. Love involves sacrifice, as the reader quickly discovers. 1996, Clarion, $16.95. Ages 12 up.
(PUBLISHER: Clarion Books (New York:), PUBLISHED: 1996.)

Publishers Weekly (Publishers Weekly)
In the later years of his life, the Scottish-born Stevenson and his American wife moved to Samoa, where this tale was originally published, in Samoan, in 1891. Offering an engrossing spin on a time-honored theme-the risky business of making a pact with the devil-this short story is a radiant jewel. It recounts the mercurial lot of Keawe, a Hawaiian who purchases a bottle inhabited by an imp capable of granting any wish. Yet this enticing object holds a dark curse: anyone who dies with it in his possession will burn forever in hell. And here's the sticky rub: one can only sell the bottle for less than its purchase price. Keawe rids himself of the bottle after acquiring a palatial home. But when he needs it again to ensure his happiness with a newfound love, its cost is, chillingly, one cent, and the responsibility of ownership becomes a good deal more complex. Stevenson throws unexpected curves and laces his narrative with memorable imagery and canny understatement. Blending period and contemporary elements, Mair's warm, grainy paintings hold more than a hint of Gauguin's renderings of the tropics' lush vegetation and gleaming blue seas and skies. Ages 8-12. (Feb.)
(PUBLISHER: Clarion Books (New York:), PUBLISHED: 1996.)

Deborah Stevenson (The Bulletin of the Center for Children s Books, February 1996 (Vol. 49, No. 6))
A blend of folklore, morality tale, and absorbing fiction, Stevenson's story tells of a man, Keawe, who buys an imp in a bottle. This bottle will grant him all he requires, but he must sell it before he dies or else be damned for eternity, he must sell it for less than he paid, and the payment must be in coin. Well and good: Keawe uses the imp to give himself a beautiful and happy house and to win himself a lovely woman, Kokua, and then sells the bottle-unfortunately he then discovers he is suffering from leprosy, so buys the bottle back to cure himself and stay with his beloved Kokua. Now, however, the bottle must be sold for less than one cent, and who would buy it even if that were possible? The story is both moving and slyly clever, but it is long and leisurely paced. The oversized format makes the volume resemble a picture book, but the design makes the text dauntingly dense on the glossy pages. Thickly brushed watercolors in intense and vivid island hues appear periodically; they are decorative but don't enhance the story much. Ad--Additional book of acceptable quality for collections needing more material in the area. Reviewed from galleys (c) Copyright 1996, The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois. 1996, Clarion, [60p], $16.95. Grades 5-8.
(PUBLISHER: Clarion Books (New York:), PUBLISHED: 1996.)

Recorded Books (Recorded Books, LLC.)
In 1887, Robert Louis Stevenson and his wife, Fanny, left England and sailed for the United States. A year later, they moved on again, steaming from San Francisco to the blue waters and lush islands of the South Pacific. As he soaked up the exotic landscapes, Robert Louis Stevenson was fascinated by the mystery and lore of the islands. Seeking to capture the quality of the folk-tales he heard, Stevenson crafted short stories, filling them with the masterful suspense that has mesmerized readers for over one hundred years. In addition to The Bottle Imp, this collection also includes Markheim, Ollala, and Thrawn Janet. Each chilling story takes on added power through Alexander Spencer s brilliant narration. n.d., Recorded Books, Unabridged Cassette - Library Edition; 81281, $30.75.
(PUBLISHER: Recorded Books (Prince Frederick MD:), PUBLISHED: p1981.)

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Series :

Easy readers

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Publication Details:

  Publisher ISBN Notes
New York: Clarion Books, 1996

Media Type: Language Material
60 p.:
PZ7.S8482 ([Fic])
San Francisco Calif.: Tree Garden Workshop, 1994

Media Type: Language Material
77 p.:
PZ7.S8482 ([Fic])
Prince Frederick MD: Recorded Books, 1981

Media Type: Nonmusical Sound Recording
3 sound cassettes (4 hr. 30 min.):
PR5482 1981c (823/.8)
An unabridged recording of the book.
"First published in 1889."-Cover
"Classics on Cassette with Book."-Cover.
In container (23 cm.).
Copenhagen Denmark: Grafisk Forlag, 1967

Media Type: Language Material
47 p.:

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