The Spider and the Fly (DiTerlizzi book)
The cover art of The Spider and the Fly
|Publisher||Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers|
|October 1, 2002|
The Spider and the Fly is a picture book published by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers on October 1, 2002. The author and illustrator, Tony DiTerlizzi, based this book on a poem by Mary Howitt originally written in 1829. The Spider and the Fly became a Caldecott Honor book in 2003.
The Spider and the Fly presents the 1829 poem of the same name, composed by Mary Howitt, as a picture book, illustrated by Tony DiTerlizzi. The book was published in 2002 by Simon & Schuster book for Young Readers. The book contains 40 pages and is intended for children ages 5 and up. The plot is conveyed by a series of monochrome drawings, which set the events around the eponymous spider's home.
The Fly, initially hesitant, is eventually won over by flattery; "'Your eyes are like the diamond bright, but mine are dull as lead!'", and is presumably eaten by the Spider.
Characters and themes
As the title suggests, the main characters are a Spider and a Fly. The illustrator also incorporates as images ghosts of the Spider's past victims.
The book retains the original poem's function as a cautionary tale, warning the reader against vanity as a quality readily manipulable by others for nefarious purposes.
The Spider and the Fly met with critical acclaim. Publishers Weekly praised it as a "a visual treat", and for its appeal to "young sophisticates and kids alike". The New York Times also approved, believing it able to "explicate the metaphor", yet not "diminish [young readers'] pleasure in the grisly doings one bit."
- 2003 Caldecott Honor Book
- "2003 Caldecott Medal and Honor Books". ALA American Library Association. Retrieved November 12, 2017.