The Coming of the Unicorn
Scottish Folk Tales for Children
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Duncan Williamson came from a family of Traveling People. They told stories around the campfire for entertainment and for teaching, and as a child Duncan learned the ways of the world through those stories. “My father's knowledge told us how to live in this world as natural human beings—not to be greedy, not to be foolish, not to be daft or selfish—by stories.”
In this collection, Duncan passes on some of those wonderful folk and fairy tales for children. For more than sixty years, Duncan traveled around Scotland—on foot, then in a horse and cart, and later in an old van—collecting tales that come not only from the Traveling People but also from the crofters, farmers, and shepherds he met along the way.
The Coming of the Unicorn includes tales of cunning foxes and storytelling cats, hunchbacked ogres and beautiful unicorns, helpful broonies and mysterious fairies, rich kings and fearsome warriors, as well as stories about ordinary folks trying to make their way in the world. These stories have been written down to reflect as faithfully as possible Duncan's unique storytelling voice, full of color, humor, and life.
Duncan Williamson was born in 1928 on the shores of Loch Fyne, the seventh of sixteen children. He left home at the age of fifteen and spent the next forty years traveling, continuing the traditional trades of his people, and collecting tales from travelers, crofters, farmers and shepherds he met along the way. Duncan died in 2007, leaving behind a worldwide reputation.
An Illustrated Treasury of Scottish Folk and Fairy Tales
Retold by Theresa Breslin
Hardbound, Large Format
Illustrated by Kate Leiper
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This beautiful volume is simply one of the finest folklore collections and most alive retellings ever committed to paper, all the better for being enhanced by truly beautiful illustrations that capture the magic, warmth and wonder of these tales. Theresa Breslin has managed to convey each tale in its own voice, while making her telling of it immediate and personal. You can almost hear the fire crackling as she beckons you to come closer and listen.
Here are funny tales, moving stories, and enchanting fairy tales. Soar with the goshawk, dive with selkies and battle with the stoorworm, as each story is brought to life with Kate Leiper's exquisite illustrations that brim with otherworldly beauty.
A wonderful gift, this is a truly stunning book to be treasured for a lifetime and will be enjoyed by parents and grandparents as well as children.
Ages 4 and up, with the understanding that not all of the stories are suitable for the very young, but some are.
Over the Hills and Far Away
Stories of dwarfs, fairies, gnomes and elves from around Europe
Edited by Els Boekelaar and Ineke Verschuren
Illustrations by Daniela Drescher
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Stories of dwarfs, fairies, gnomes and elves - as well as nature beings by other names - are among the most universal in humanity's storytelling pantheon. Regardless of the culture of origin, they share insights into the wisdom of nature and the effect of human morality upon it. In fact, all such stories I've ever read or heard told are in one way or another morality tales -- only here, the human's morality affects nature and her beings and they, in turn, affect the destiny of the people involved, whether for good or ill. The reverse can also be true: naughty nature beings have their effect in the world and the world and more evolved beings respond to counter it.
However, there is a warmth to these tales that most morality tales lack: even when the deeds arise out of the lower nature of people, or from a recalcitrant gnome, there is a sympathy in the telling that leads to a type of heartwarmed understanding. In short, this quality makes them wonderful for children (and adults, I might add). These stories invite the child into the heart of the world, and evoke a desire to be helpful and kind in the process.
Most of the tales in Over the Hills and Far Away are ideal for children 6-10 years old. Some of the simpler ones would be lovely for children 4 years old or older. This is a wonderful collection of stories made even richer by Daniella Drescher's beautiful paintings.
A Donsy of Gnomes
7 gentle gnome stories
Written and Illustrated by Sieglinde De Francesca
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A Donsy of Gnomes is just one of the dearest books ever. The wee folk who live in it will become fast friends with all the young children who get to meet them. And, these charming natural/magical little people come bringing gifts ~ in the most delightful ways possible they teach wee lessons, happily and by example, in generosity, selflessness, resourcefulness, courage and friendship.
This is just a perfect little book for young children. Take your child on a charming and jaunty journey though the worlds of the gnomes. It's just the thing for sweet dreams at night or a pause in the midst of a busy day. I predict that this will be one of the books that will remain alive in your children's hearts long after they have grown and have children of their own.
A joy to be shared with children ages 3 and up!
The Tales of Tiptoes Lightly
"The Bee Who Lost His Buzz," "Pumpkin Crow," "Lucy Goose and the Half-Egg"
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Whether you plan to read these sprightly stories to young children, use them as class stories for first grade, or offer them to an intermediate reader as a first chapter book, you and the children in your care are going to love these tales and the gentle characters who people them.
Tiptoes Lightly is a gentle and wise fairy who lives in an acorn high up in the branches of a Great Oak Tree. One morning she finds a note lying on her floor. It says: "Please help! Bee has lost his Buzz!" Thus begins the adventure that takes Tiptoes through the world of nature and into your heart.
The Tales of Tiptoes Lightly comprises three adventures: "The Bee Who Lost His Buzz," "Pumpkin Crow," and "Lucy Goose and the Half-Egg." Sweet and lively illustrations by the author are just one more thing to love about these charming stories.
I read these stories to the children of my class every week for a whole year - they loved them! Their faces shone with obvious delight - I recommend them highly.
- M. Higashine, grades teacher
The Festival of Stones
Autumn and Winter Tales of Tiptoes Lightly
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More adventures of Tiptoes Lightly -- this time with an eye to the festivals of autumn and winter. Tiptoes and her friends journey the realms of nature and spirit, encountering the heart and soul of the festivals along the way. These are just such dear stories -- I can't imagine any young child failing to love them as much as I do.
The festivals Tiptoes illuminates are:
- The Festival of Stones
- The Festival of Plants
- The Festival of Animals
- The Festival of Light
Big-Stamp Two-Toes the Barefoot Giant
Spring Tales of Tiptoes Lightly
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Reg Down weaves more Tiptoes magic, this time with a spring theme. In this third book filled with stories that are so lyrical and lovely they practically dance themselves off the page, we join Tiptoes and her friends in Farmer John's garden where bees and plants are awakening in gay abandon. As the book and the season progresses, babies of all sorts are born, kites are flown, more tales are told, sacrifices and rescues are made, and love is called into it all.
These stories are so wonderful for kindergartners and first graders (and their teachers and parents!). Thanks, Reg!
The Magic Knot and Other Tangles
A Comedy Starring Pine Cone and Pepper Pot
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Tiptoes Lightly lives in a lovely little house with just one problem -- there is no furniture! But, that's about to change. Tiptoes will be having a birthday soon, and her dear friends Pine Cone and Pepper Pot the gnomes have determined to make her a table and three chairs, and to find a way to get them to the tippy top of the Great Oak Tree where Tiptoes makes her home. Along the way,they get help from a host of friends and adventures and misadventures abound. In the end, we join Tiptoes at her birthday party where she tells the story of how she came to live in the Great Oak Tree as a daughter of Father Sun and Mother Wind.
Wonderful! Thanks to Reg Down for adding another delightful window into the world of Tiptoes Lightly and her friends.
The Lost Lagoon
Adventures of Tiptoes Lightly and Greenleaf the Sailor
Softbound, filled with delightful black and white drawings
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Another delightful addition to Reg Down's Tiptoes Lightly series! The Lost Lagoon will keep your children rapt with attention as Tiptoes Lightly and Greenleaf the Sailor make their way through new wonder-filled adventures.
It is spring and Running River is in full flood. Tiptoes Lightly and Jeremy Mouse visit Greenleaf the Sailor and venture forth in Greenleaf's newly made boat. Soon they are joined by Pine Cone and Pepper Pot the Gnomes and together they search for the Lost Lagoon the frogs have been so beautifully singing about.
Meanwhile, back home, Farmer John reads The Adam Tales to Tom Nutcracker and June Berry. Later, Tom rides off in the night until he, too, comes to the Lost Lagoon. What Happens on this night, with its majestic, rising moon, is filled with a wonder and magic that won't soon be forgotten.
Highly recommended for ages 4 and up!
Hansel & Gretel
Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm
Illustrated by Anastasiya Archipova
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This is one of my favorite fairy tales because it is so very beautiful and so very rich in the wisdom of the human heart. This version wondrously tells every single part of the story, including the ride home on the duck's back, which for some reason is often omitted. The fact that it is illustrated by Anastasiya Archipova adds another element of truth and beauty for our children and ourselves to find. A book for all generations.
Little Red Riding Hood
A Grimm's fairy tale
Illustrated by Marjan van Zeyl
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This is the classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale of a little girl who goes through the woods to deliver food to her grandmother.
I love this book because Marjan van Zeyl’s luminous illustrations are soft and glowing, just right for our children.
Favourite Grimm's Tales
Hardbound, Large Format
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If you can have only one collection of fairy tales, this is the one to get. A practically perfect selection of the best-loved of the Grimm's collected tales, retold with a simplicity worthy of their depth, and illustrated with a beauty and innocence that will invite a child's heart of roam these worlds, Favourite Grimm's Tales is one of the best books to appear this season. This is truly the "stuff that dreams are made of."
An Illustrated Treasury of Hans Christian Andersen's Fairy Tales
Hans Christian Andersen
Illustrated by Anastasiya Archipova
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Anastasiya Archipova's incomparable illustrations bring to life the wonder and mystery of these well-known and well-loved stories from Hans Christian Anderson. The stories chosen for this collection are also some of my personal favourites from my own childhood - stories that I think every child who hears them will carry in their hearts for life. I can't recommend this beautiful book highly enough.
From the publisher: Hans Christian Andersen's classic tales of foolish emperors, lonely mermaids, icy queens and clever princesses have delighted children and adults alike for nearly two centuries. The stories' unique magic and wonder make them essential reading for any childhood.
This beautifully illustrated collection of Andersen's best-loved fairy tales includes:
- The Princess and the Pea
- The Snow Queen
- The Emperor's New Clothes
- The Little Mermaid
Each story is brought to life with charming illustrations by Anastasiya Archipova, illustrator of dozens of children's books.
This gift edition of Andersen's tales is designed for little hands and will make a beautiful addition to any bookshelf.
For readers 5-8 years old.
This title replaces the out of print Favourite Tales from Hans Christian Anderson.
216 pages, 7" x 8 7/8", 2014.
A Grimm's Fairy Tale
Illustrated by Martina Müller
Hardbound, large format
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One of the most beloved fairy tales, told in many ways throughout the world, this beautifully illustrated edition does justice to the vision of this story with its great themes of innocence, destiny, protection and redemption. A worthy offering and a gift to any child.
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In this little booklet are six fairy tales, created by a master Waldorf teacher for her first graders. Each is a story that is "just right" and most worthy of warm regard with which this collection is held in Waldorf circles. A lovely way to guide a child toward new adventures in learning.
- The Little Prince and the Sun (First Day Story)
- The Little Prince at School (Second Week)
- The Proud Prince
- The Secret and Magic Name of the King
- The Queen Who Lost Things
- The Little Boy and the Four Elements (Number Story)
Nelson Mandela's Favorite African Folktales
Collected & Retold by Nelson Mandela
Illustrated with specially commissioned paintings by African artists.
Softbound, Large Format
$17.95Add a review
It is my wish that the voice of the storyteller may never die in Africa, that all the children of the world may experience the wonder of books.
Nelson Mandela's Favorite Folktales is a cause for celebration, a landmark work that gathers in one volume many of Africa's most cherished folktales. Mandela has selected these 32 tales with the specific hope that Africa's oldest stories, as well as a few new ones, be perpetuated by future generations and be appreciated by children thoughout the world.
In these beloved tales, rich with the essence of Africa, we meet, among others, a Kenyan lion named Simba, a snake with seven heads, and a Zulu trickster. We hear voices of the scheming hyena and learn how the animals acquired their tails and horns. There are several creations myths that take us to the beginnings of all things and people.
As good as the tales are the lavish and beautiful illustrations - they offer a rich backdrop to this treasure chest of stories.
This is a wonderful addition to the world of folklore and a gift to families and children. Enjoy, enjoy!
Stories of Gnomes and Trolls
Illustrated by Susanne A. Mitchell
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The Troll of Tree Hill
Illustrated by Thomas Nelson
Softbound, large format
$18.95Add a review
Judy Large's Troll of Tree Hill is a great addition to the world of children's literature. Taking up an unusual theme - that of a Troll who doesn't like humans (many don't, we learn) yet finds his homeland "invaded" - Large does something that children's books used to do more often: she tells a long story. This richly illustrated story (Thomas Nelson's black and white half-tones both beautiful and abundant) is one that will captivate children and parents for days and days, keeping everyone waiting to discover what the troll will do next, how will the people respond. All the while, you'll find your heart opening to this little grumpy fellow. My prediction is that this is a storybook you'll often pull off the shelf to tell "one more time." A true gift for children ages 8 to 108 (or more).
Swedish Folk Tales
Illustrated by John Bauer
Hardbound, large format, richly illustrated with amazing paintings
$22.95Add a review
from "Leap Elk and Little Princess Cottongrass"
This dazzling collection of twenty-nine illustrated stories, retold by some of the greatest Swedish writers, includes:
- “When Mother Troll Took in the King’s Washing” by Elsa Beskow
- “The Magician’s Cape” by Anna Wahlenberg
- “Leap the Elk and the Little Princess Cottongrass” by Helge Kjellin
- “The Four Big Trolls and Little PetHer Pastureman” by Cyrus Granér
- “The Trolls and the Youngest Tomte” by Alfred Smedberg
- “The Ring” by Helena Nyblom
- “The Seven Wishes” by Alfred Smedberg
- “Stalo and Kauras” by P. A. Lindholm
- “The Maiden in the Castle of Rosy Clouds” by Harald Ostenson
- “The Boy and the Trolls, or the Adventure” by Walter Stenström
- “The Crofters and the Gnomes” by Anna Wahlenberg
- “The Golden Key” by W. E. Björk
- “The Giant Who Slept for Ten Thousand Years” by Einar Rosenborg
- ... and many more!
John Bauer’s original and evocative illustrations bring these classic Swedish folk tales to life. His art seems to me to be a combination of earthly idealism and a fascintating evocation of spiritual reality (or perhaps "elemental reality"). It is no wonder that he is so beloved in Sweden. This collection, paired with his paintings, makes this a book to treasure for generations.
Because of the complexity of some of the themes, as well as the rather robust encounters of humans and elemental beings, I personally recommend this collection for children ages 9 and older, though some of the stories are appropriate for younger children.
Olga Dugina, Andrei Dugin, Arnica Esterl
We have decided not to make this book available - please read below for an explanation
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After considering and reconsidering this book, we have concluded that we cannot make it available. Although the story is wonderful, and the illustrations are highly artistic, the presence of gratuitously fantastic creatures throughout the images runs so counter to everything Steiner wanted for children, and everything we want for children, that we must remove it from our offerings.
For adults, these images can offer insight into the astral realms (Hieronymous Bosch is the obvious inspiration here); but for children, seeing animals and even an angel with heads and sometimes legs/arms/hands replaced by bagpipe parts, conveys nothing that is healthy or real at their stages of life. In fact, such images demean the beauty and love held within earthly creation. For a child to grow whole, it is wholeness that must surround him or her; a pig's body with people feet and bagpipe head is not an image of wholeness; and what sort of angel would have a bagpipe head?
Robust children might laugh or giggle at them (is that what we want for them?), but sensitve children may well be treated to a long period of nightmares because of them. In either case, the outcome of either learning to mock the world or to be terrified of it goes contrary to the interests of the child.