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Folklore from around the world

andrews_when apples grew nosesAndrews, Jan  When Apples Grew Noses and White Horses Flew: Tales of Ti-Jean
Gr. 4–6     69 pp.     Groundwood

Illustrated by Dušan Petričić. Ti-Jean, cheerful, hapless stripling of French-Canadian folklore, makes a winning appearance in three tales of European origin lightly transposed to a New World setting. Andrews is a storyteller, and these zesty, well-paced texts virtually read themselves. Source notes are appended, but these are not so much retellings or even adaptations as simpatico re-imaginings. Petričić’s sly drawings underpin the fun throughout.
Subjects: Folktales, Myths, and Legends; French Canadians

elya_little roja riding hoodElya, Susan Middleton  Little Roja Riding Hood
Gr. K–3     32 pp.     Putnam

Illustrated by Susan Guevara. Little Red rides an ATV to deliver la canasta (basket) to her abuela in this hip version of the traditional tale. Liberally sprinkled with Spanish words and phrases, the rhyming text is fresh and funny. Just as clever as the quirky text are the watercolor, ink, and gouache illustrations that contain plenty of humor and multiple layers of meaning. Glos.
Subjects: Folktales, Myths, and Legends; Stories in rhyme; Family—Grandmothers; Animals—Wolves; Foreign languages—Spanish language; Folklore—England

gaiman_hansel & gretelGaiman, Neil  Hansel & Gretel
Gr. 4–6, middle school     54 pp.     Candlewick/TOON

Illustrated by Lorenzo Mattotti. Toon Graphic series. Gaiman retells the classic Grimm tale to accompany a set of paintings by Italian graphic artist Mattotti. The narration is as dark as the India-ink art. Double-page spreads of text alternate with full-bleed paintings, in which the humans are dwarfed by menacing shadows. Older readers with a taste for the macabre will enjoy this version of the tale. Bib.
Subjects: Folktales, Myths, and Legends; Witches and witchcraft; Family—Siblings; Folklore—Germany; Graphic novels; Grimm, Jacob and Wilhelm; Cartoons and comics

macdonald_give up, geckoMacDonald, Margaret Read  Give Up, Gecko!: A Folktale from Uganda
Gr. K–3     32 pp.     Amazon

Illustrated by Deborah Melmon. During a drought little Gecko perseveres when all the other animals give up trying to stomp their way down to the water underground. When Gecko finally reaches water, Elephant tries to take his moment of triumph away, but all the other animals recognize his accomplishment. Humorous digitally manipulated illustrations enhance this lively tale that invites audience participation.
Subjects: Folktales, Myths, and Legends; Water; Weather—Droughts; Folklore—Uganda; Animals—Geckos; Behavior—Perseverance; Folklore—Animals

sehgal_bucket of blessingsSehgal, Kabir and Sehgal, Surishtha  A Bucket of Blessings
Gr. K–3   32 pp.     Simon/Beach Lane

Illustrated by Jing Jing Tsong. In this retelling of an Indian myth, a village is desperate for rain. Monkey must bring a bucket of water up a mountain so that Peacock can perform a rain dance. But will there be any water left when he reaches the top? The lush, rainbow-hued block-print and digitally rendered illustrations — with several especially striking full-spread scenes — are the real draw here.
Subjects: Folktales, Myths, and Legends; Animals—Monkeys; Weather—Rain; Folklore—India; Animals—Peacocks; Weather—Droughts

From the March 2015 issue of Nonfiction Notes from the Horn Book.

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