Saturday, September 4, 2010

Alvin Schwartz - The Green Ribbon

I've been meaning to do a post on this story since I first started this blog, but of course I'm only getting round to it now. When I was a child I was obsessed with "The Green Ribbon". It may have had something to do with the fact that the girl in the story was called Jenny, which made it even more creepy. This short story belongs to a collection of scary stories, from the book "In a Dark, Dark Room" by Alvin Schwartz. A straightforward children's story that is still fascinatingly sinister.

The version I had was illustrated by the fantastic, Dirk Zimmer. I'm aware there were a couple of other versions of this book, but when I think of this story, I always remember how well Zimmer's illustrations portrayed the tense and gloomy mood. Each picture was simply drawn but was then painstakingingly detailed with tiny black etchings to create depth. It always disturbed me when I was younger how even when Jenny was smiling in the pictures, she always looked so sad. I suppose that happens when you harbour a terrrrrible secret..WHoOoOoOoOoOoo etc etc. Was the cat supposed to be Death, or just a creepy cat?! This tale without a doubt, spawned my life-long love for horror. Maybe some of you remember this story?








21 comments:

  1. This is my favorite story from this book, which is one of my favorite childhood books. Thanks for posting the pics.

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  2. You're welcome, glad you like it!

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  3. OMG, for the 1st time in 15+ years this story randomly popped into my head today. Glad I found this site, it would have driven me crazy trying to recall what it was. Honestly, though, this book traumatized me as a kid (probably 6-ish?). It all came back looking at the last page, the head on the floor, lifeless body still on the bed... Scary!! Anyhoo, thanks for sharing, I love hashing up repressed childhood memories!!

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  4. Haha yeah, it was a pretty scary story for a child to read in fairness! Glad you liked the post anyway x

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  5. I thought I was the only one!

    I love this!

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  6. wow ...i so remember this

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  7. oh sh*t. this is scary

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  8. I got to your blog through someone's tumblr. This story is scary as hell. I thought it wasn't going to end with something romantic. This would be the scariest thing alive if it was made into some scary movie.

    *shivers*

    thanks for sharing.

    www.riskofrain.com

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  9. ooops. I meant I thought it WAS*

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  10. I read a book of short horror stories by Anthony Horowitz, I now just realised he completely ripped this off except for a black ribbon.

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  11. I miss this story so much as a kid i would read this story over and over again i absolutely love this book :)

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  12. Thanks for all the comments, glad you loved the story as much as I did! x

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  13. okay.this is disturbing.LOL. ilike. :)

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  14. I found this book at a used book store when I was 9 and it scared me. The stories that are stuck to my mind until now is this one and "In a dark dark room".

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  15. Just found this book last week after 20+ years!!! I read the Green Ribbon for the first time to my nieces and nephew and it's now their favorite!!! Thanks for sharing! :)

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  16. Absolutely LOVE this story! I, too, was obsessed with it as a kid. Thanks for posting!!

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  17. I was just thinking about this story today. I only heard it as a kid from other kids, probably ones who had the book. However, it says on the title, "as re-told by..." which means these are collections of older tales. Does anyone know where the story originated?

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  18. This was my favorite all time story when I was young. I'm not sure what that says about me lol but I would literally rent it from the library every week and read it over and over again! I'm not sure why my mom never just purchased it, but anyways! Thanks for posting!

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  19. Love this story. Read at school only once, when i was maybe 5-6. Im 34 now!
    somehow this story stuck w me. I have 2 boys now and want to find the book for them. Thank you for shareing. Love the dark dark room too.

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  20. I really want to know the meaning behind the story its driving me crazy and honestly.
    •All I know is that she always looked sad
    •had the ribbon as a secret
    •if you pull it off her head falls off
    •her husband was curious
    ......I think I just figured it out...Omg
    Like curiosity how the saying is "curiosity killed the cat" well maybe his curiosity was supposed to be society and jenny is what society didn't know. But we know her head fell of if the ribbon was taken off but we still dont know why or how or....like....we know we are in space but we dont know how or why..this is really screwing with my mind urgh sorry for bad grammar

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