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Friday, March 6, 2009

Book Review: Aesop's Fables

In my humble opinion, there are certain types of books that every child should have. One is a book of classic fairy tales. Another is a solid selection of nursery rhymes. And finally, I believe that every child should be exposed to Aesop's Fables. I love these short, simple stories that make it easy to see how our actions can affect our daily lives. They are timeless lessons that we can learn from if we take the time to pay attention.

Sterling Publishing has released a beautiful illustrated anthology of Aesop's Fables that is a pleasure to read. Retold by John Cech and illustrated by Martin Jarrie, this interpretation contains over thirty fables. All the good ones from my childhood are here - The Fox & The Grapes, The Tortoise & The Hare, The Ant & The Grasshopper, as well as a few I had never heard before like The Astronomer and The Lady & Her Maids.

One thing I really love about this version is the layout. The fables are well written, simple, with just a hint of magic. They are very short, which is great for children who don't like to sit still (like mine), and are straight to the point. Each fable is written in a single column to the side of the page, leaving plenty of room for the gorgeous accompanying illustration. All the pictures are playful, imaginative, colorful and have a wonderful folksy feel to them. The fables and the illustrations complement each other perfectly. My son is still too young to understand the stories, but I can tell that he's impressed by all the vibrant colors. I'm really looking forward to sharing this book with him when he's a little older.

This is a stunning collection that would be a worthy addition to any bookshelf. There is so much wisdom is contained in these fables and the best part is, they never get old. Learn more about this version of Aesop's Fables here.

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