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The Boy Who Was Not Hans

December 13, 1987

It's obvious your reviewer Kristiana Gregory never read "Hans Brinker; or The Silver Skates" or "The Boy Who Held Back the Sea"--because they are 2 DIFFERENT STORIES! "Hans Brinker" was written by Mary Mapes Dodge and is about an ice skating competition. So before she lets her children have their turn with the book, have Gregory read the book you paid her to review.

MARIEANNE STONE

Reseda

Editor's Note: The offending sentence in the mentioned review, about which The Times received several other letters, reads: "In 'The Boy Who Held Back the Sea,' (Thomas Locker) solos as artist to Lenny Hort's charming retelling of 'Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates.' " That sentence should have read: ". . . charming retelling of an incident from 'Hans Brinker, or The Silver Skates; A Story of Life in Holland.' " Kristiana Gregory did not write the misleading headline.

The incident constitutes something over half of Chapter 18 of Mary Mapes Dodge's famous book, which, as she writes in its preface, "aims to combine the instructive features of a book of travels with the interest of a domestic tale." The copyright page for "The Boy Who Held Back the Sea" reads: "adaption of Hans Brinker; or The Silver Skates."

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