by Brothers Grimm

Other authorsPaul O. Zelinsky (Adapter), Paul O. Zelinsky (Illustrator)
Hardcover, 1986



Local notes

398.2 Gri




Dutton Juvenile (1986), Edition: 1st, Hardcover, 40 pages


A strange little man helps the miller's daughter spin straw into gold for the king on the condition that she will give him her first-born child.


Caldecott Medal (Honor Book — 1987)
Texas Bluebonnet Award (Nominee — 1989)
Reading Rainbow Program Selection (Selection — 42 — 1987)


Original publication date


Physical description

40 p.; 11.6 inches

User reviews

LibraryThing member JulianneM
I love this book! This story is just such a classic tale and one that I have always loved. The illustrations in this are just beautiful and really depict the story well. If you are wanting a great folk tale you need to read this book!
LibraryThing member egoeke
Rumpelstiltskin is about a poor miller’s daughter whose father lied his way into the King’s good graces. The miller told the king that his daughter could spin straw into gold, and since the king loved gold he wanted to meet this miller’s daughter right away. Once he met her he locked her in a
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room full of hay and told her that she had to spin all the hay into gold by morning or she would have to die. Of course the miller’s daughter did not know how to spin straw into gold. So she was bereaved over losing her life. But, then a small strange man came into her locked room and asked her why she was crying. When the miller’s daughter explained her dilemma to the odd little man he told her that he could to it. But, he wanted to know what she would give him for it. She ended up trading off her necklace for the odd little man to spin her straw into gold. And, so he did all through the night. At sunrise the king came into the room and was truly amazed that all the straw had been spun to gold. However, it also made him more greedy so he took the miller’s daughter to another, larger room full of straw and told her that if she didn’t spin all this straw into gold that she would have to die. And, again the girl was bereaved and again the odd little man showed up to spin her straw to gold. This time though the miller’s daughter had to give him her ring for his services. And, again the odd little man spun all the straw into gold all through the night. A little after sunrise the following day the king came again and was again amazed that the whole room full of straw had been spun into gold. But, again the king led the miller’s daughter to another even larger room full of straw. Only this time he told her that if she could spin this room full of straw into gold that he would make her his wife. But, again the miller’s daughter was bereaved and again the little man showed up to spin her room full of straw into gold. Only this time the miller’s daughter had nothing left to give. So the odd little man told her she could promise her first born child to him. The miller’s daughter had to think about that. Would she be able to give up her baby? Well, she came to the conclusion that she did not even know that she would have a baby so she agreed. And, the odd little man spun her room full of straw into gold for her again for the last time. The next morning when the king saw that the miller’s daughter had done as he asked he married her immediately. And, after awhile the queen bore a beautiful baby boy. She scarcely thought of the odd little man until the day he came back to claim what she promised him. The queen begged and pleaded with the odd little man, but it affected him not. But, then she started to sob and cry. Then he made an agreement with her. He told her that he would give her three days to figure out his name. If she could get the name right in three days she could keep her child. And, the queen agreed. Everyday he came back for two days, and both days the queen never had his name right. So on the night of the second day the queen sent her most trusted servant out to look for the little man. When the servant found him she caught him singing and in his song he said his name. The servant hurried back to the castle to tell the queen. The servant arrived midday of the third day. And, that night when the odd little man came to get the child the queen guessed his name right. And, he angrily flew away on a spoon, never to be heard from again.
The first time I ever came across this story was in the movie Muppet Classic Theatre. I loved the story. I still to this day own that movie. It was very comical for me as a child. It kept my interest easily.
One classroom extension that could be used with this book would be to act out the story in a little play. Let the children portray what they feel the story’s message should send. Another classroom extension could be to write up a bunch of names and put them in a bowl. Then let each child choose a name, then partner up and take turns trying to figure out each person’s given name.
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LibraryThing member yarb
Good-looking, good-sounding Rumpelstiltskin. Feels contemporary without being soft.
LibraryThing member CLCrothers
This is a story about a beuatiful young woman whose father's foolishness get her into some trouble, especially when she cannot do as the king has requested. A funny looking man comes to her rescue, or does he?

This story was one of my favorites when i was a girl. I think it's every girl's dream to
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marry a prince at some point in her young life. I can relate to the miller's bragging of his daughter as I have two boys that I love to brag about every accomplishment or skill.

As a classroom extention I would bring in some gold yarn and empty spools and have the children use their imagination and create something with them, then display their creations around the room.
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LibraryThing member jh127876
“Rumpelstiltskin” written by the long past Grimm Brothers is a traditional fantasy which tells the story of a woman who makes a deal with a little man. The deal is that the little man will weave her gold so that the king will marry her and she will live happily ever after, but there is a price.
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If she can not guess his name after three tries he will take her first born child.

“Rumpelstiltskin” is not a personal favorite. The modern telling of this story has a happy ending but I believe the story teaches bad values, greed being the biggest culprit. However the literature found in this book is very well presented. With complex sentence structure and some pretty good vocabulary this book will challenge beginner readers. I can not comment on illustrations because one can find many varieties of this story with many different artistic styles. For example the version I read presented the little man as not too scary, however I have read versions where the little man looks very evil and even has a baby’s foot sticking out of his mouth. So I would say read this book before reading it to children to understand which story you really have because nearly all versions are still listed as being written by the Brothers Grimm.

Some extensions of this story could be to have the class make a little arts and craft project. Where they take a ball of yarn and turn it into something they cherish like gold. They could make pictures by gluing the yarn onto paper and making shapes. Another game could be where a classmate writes another’s name down and gives someone three tries to guess the name.
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LibraryThing member Hennigar
Rumpelstiltskin offers his services to a young girl in need, but his price is costly – her first born child. The only way for the girl to keep her child is if she figures out Rumpelstiltskin’s name.

This book appealed to me both textually and visually. As I read the book I spent as much if not
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more time studying the pictures. The words were able to tell the tale but the pictures brought the story to life. The expressions of the characters depicted their personalities that the text alone could not.

As a teacher I would read this book in a read aloud session and follow it by having the students write a short, illustrated story about the life of Rumpelstiltskin. Who or what was he? Where is he from?
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LibraryThing member kmcgiverin05
Rumpelstiltskin is a fairy tale with plenty of magic, moral lessons, and the protagonist wins. I would use this in the classroom with retelling and going over fairy tales. I think the queen is a round character because we get to see the majority of her life. I would say this would be appropriate
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for the primary grades.
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LibraryThing member lacykay9300
In this story there is a Girl who is asked to spin straw into gold for the king. A little man named Rumpelstilskin shows up and makes a deal with her. He does this for her and gives her 3 guess of what his name is. If she does not do this she has to give him her first born child. After they got all
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the straw spun into gold and she marries the king. He shows up to clam the baby. He gives her one last chance to guess his name. in the end she gets to keep the baby and everything is fine.

I liked this book. I have heard it for years and read it may times. It is a classic.

In the classroom I would probably read it to them and make them do ajournal assignment about it and have them draw me there favorite scene.
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LibraryThing member reneefletcher
Paul O. Zelinsky retold this famous Grimm Brothers’ fairytale about an ambitious miller who tries to impress the king by exaggerating about his daughter’s spinning abilities. The young woman then has to overcome the dilemma by relying on the help of a greedy little man. She strikes up a bargain
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with the little man in hopes of saving her life. To cancel the bargain, the little man asks her to do an impossible task. But with fortitude and a little luck the young woman prevails.
Rumpelstiltskin is one of my all-time favorite fairytales. I love how the miller’s daughter, who is in a terrible predicament, to no fault of her own, overcomes and triumphs. The pictures in this edition are classic and add to the overall story. They help draw the reader into the story, completing the full effect of the “happily ever after”.
This story could be used as a supplement to a unit on wheels. The students will of course be familiar with the typical wheels, such as bicycle, car, ect., but this could be used to give a different explanation and meaning of “wheels”.
It could be used when teaching about different genres. It could be placed in the reading center where there will be several classical books of modern fantasy available for students to read and enjoy.
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LibraryThing member kcsutherland
A miller tells the king that his daughter can turn straw into gold. She is forced to make gold, but is unable to do so. A strange little man helps the miller's daughter spin straw into gold for the king on the condition that she will give him her firstborn child.
LibraryThing member ericha.anderson
A poor miller encounters the king. Wanting to impress him, he tells the king that his beautiful daughter can spin straw into gold. The king takes his daughter to his castle and demands that she spin for him or he will take her life. The daughter can not spin straw into gold so she weeps and
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can not think of a way to save herself. Soon, Rumplestiltskin appears. He offers to spin the straw into gold for her if she can give him something in return. The maiden offers him her necklace. When the king sees the gold, he wants more. This time the maiden gives Rumplestiltskin her ring in trade for his services. Again, the king wants more gold. Rumplestiltskin increases his demands and asks for the maiden’s first born child. She agrees. The king decides to marry the maiden because he felt she could bring him riches like no other. One year later they had a son and Rumplestiltskin came to retrieve his payment.
The queen pleads with Rumplestiltskin to allow her to keep her son. He makes a deal with her. If she can recall his name within three days, he will allow her to keep her child. After much thought and several attempts, the queen failed to come up with his name. On the second night, she sent her faithful servant into the woods to spy on Rumplestiltskin. The servant discovered his name and shared it with the queen. On the third day, the queen called out “Rumplestiltskin” and her child was hers to keep forever.

5. A few themes and values certainly caught my attention in this story. I connected with the way the author portrayed the maiden’s deep love for her child. When her own life was at stake, she was ready to give up and did not search very had for a solution to this problem. However, when her son was threatened she grew stronger and more determined to find a way to stop this from happening. I also noticed that this story like many other traditional tales portrayed characters as holding true to their word and promises. The king, maiden, and Rumplestiltskin never failed to do as they promised nor did they go back on their word. I think this is a very important theme to point out when teaching children about traditional literature and using it for character education.
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LibraryThing member mmsharp
The poor millers daughter who's sentenced to spin straw into gold or she will be put to death. A small old man appears asking for something in return to spin the straw to gold. Watch what you wish away.
I was always a little creeped out by this story as a child, but this Caldecott winner
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illustrates some incredible drawings and for some reason I don't find them quite as odd.
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LibraryThing member jaia
Zelinsky is such an amazing artist that it is hard not to get addicted to his books. He pays homage to the famous tale of Rumpelstiltskin by creating a beautiful Medieval setting, yet lends something new to this tale as well.
LibraryThing member rachaelmcdonald
Rumpelstiltskin, is a story about a beautiful woman who was brought to the King’s castle and told if she didn’t spin straw into gold she would be killed in the morning. The woman had no idea how she could achieve such a task . All of a sudden a little man showed up out of nowhere and told the
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woman he could spin the straw into gold, if the woman would give him her ring. The woman agreed and the little man did spin all the straw into gold. When the king saw all the gold he became greedy and again threatens the woman with death if she does not spin even more straw into gold. When the little man comes back he makes the woman promise him her first born child. With no other choice the woman agrees. One year later the woman, now the queen gives birth to a baby boy. The little man shows up to collect his prize. The Queen is so upset and distraught that the little man tells her, if you can guess my name you can keep your baby. The Queen sends out her servant to find out his name, The servant comes back and tells the queen that the little man’s name is Rumplestilskin and the Queen and King live happily ever after with their baby.

Rumplestilskin was one of my many favorites as a child. I would have my mother read me the book over and over. This is a classic story that must continue to be told to live on through the generations. This is a book I plan on reading to my students to keep it alive over time.

In a classroom environment children could make Rumplestilskin puppets, and use gold ribbon to decorate the puppet. It would be interesting for the teacher to look up the history of the story to teach the children. Inform the children on how old the story is and why it is important for them to tell it to their friends, family, and future children.
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LibraryThing member elizacats
The illustrations are wonderful. It sets the mood of the era in time, the colors show mood, and expression.
This is an old story about an elf-type creature that grants the wish of a miller's daughter. The price is very high, but she agrees. When it comes time to pay the price, the once daughter of a
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miller, now queen, tricks the creature and gets out of paying her very precious debt.
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LibraryThing member carebear0811
As most of you may know Rumpelstiltskin is about a daughter of a poor miller who told the king that her daughter can spin straw into gold. The king tells the woman spin all this straw into gold or I will kill you. A little man offers to help her several times, but asking for things in return.

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really liked the illustrations in this book. I have read Rumpelstiltskin before but not by this particular author. I also really liked how it tells the history of the story in the back of the book.
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LibraryThing member amber85
There was a poor miller who had a daughter who could spin straw into gold. She stayed in a little room filled with straw and the king told her she had to spin it by tomorrow or it will be her life. So, she cried and cried then a little man came in the room and said he will help her if he could get
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her necklace in return. The king kept swapping her rooms filled with straw and the little man helped her everytime. Then at the end the king married her and she promised the little man that he would give her son to him for helping her the last time. She figured his name out and got to keep her son.
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LibraryThing member KellyBryan
The illustrations in the story are gorgeous and very detailed. Zelinsky really knows how to bring this classic fairy tale to life. I love the way he portrays Rumpelstiltskin. He is not really scary but just looks odd. A must read for every child.

You can introduce the Brothers Grimm in class and
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explain who the brothers were and why their fairy tales have remained classics. Have the students guess what other stories are from the Brothers Grimm.
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LibraryThing member linnaea44
Good classic story, the illustrations were very artistic. Lots of color and detail. The storyline wasn't changed too much which I like. Great story for all and I am glad it is still being published with newer illustrations to enhance the story.
LibraryThing member susanmartling
The rich and detailed illustrations pull the reader into this old favorite fairy tale. The author's notes on the evolution of the story shed light on some of the details included in the text. An instructive reference when teaching about fairy tales.
LibraryThing member Kasey2
Fun Fairy tale. Always great to imagine a world with magical little people.
LibraryThing member drruth
Largely true to Grimm's version of the Rumpelstiltskin story. This fairy tale is interesting in that so many of the characters behave badly. It has led to some interesting conversations with my children about whose fault some of the events are how sympathtic they find the title character. We all
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agree, however, that as much as we may like Rumpelstiltskin, we still prefer the original more violent resolution where he stamps himself into the ground and tears himself in half!
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LibraryThing member cc120323
This is a folktale from the Grimm’s Brothers collection. It is a story of an innocent miller’s daughter who has to spin straw into gold to stay alive. A strange little man helps her, but ultimately demands her first born in return. When this becomes a request she can’t live with, she sends
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her servant to find the little man and discover his name. At the end she identifies him as Rumpelstiltskin and never sees him again.

This was my favorite book as a child. I love the folklore and the era it is set in. It has beautiful illustrations created by Paul O. Zelinsky. I will definitely read this to my children some day.

I would use this to create a skit that would then be performed to other classes.
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LibraryThing member savannah.julian
I think the illustrations are what makes this book. The story is the classic Rumpelstiltskin story that I don't think has much substance. A young women is sold to a king by her father who says she can spin wheat into gold, which of course she cannot. She is so upset that she gives a little man who
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can actually make the gold thread, her necklace, her ring, and her first born son. When her son in finally born she pleads with the little man to not take her child, so he gives her three days to guess his name and he will forget her promise. The first 2 days she cannot guess his name, so on the 2nd night she sends a servant to spy on the little man and discovers his name is Rumpelstiltskin. When she 'guesses' his name he says 'the devil told you that' and he flies away on a I said...kind of bazaar. The illustrations though are beautiful.
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LibraryThing member jenhope
I think this is a great story, I think of it as more of a classic story. I think it has great morals to the story about telling the truth and not being too greedy for that gets you nothing and no where. Plus, it shows and teaches kids about the ideas of magical powers and being imaginative.






(295 ratings; 4.1)
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