Why are ravens black? Why do screech owl eyes look red in light? How did we get fire? You'll find the answers to those questions in this retelling of a Cherokee "pour quoi" folktale. The earth was cold and dark but the animals could see fire coming from the tree on the island. They tried to fly or swim to the island to bring back the fire heat and light. What happened to some of the animals? Which animal brought it back and how?
In this delightful story of perseverance and survival from Russia, two frog sisters learn the truth of that old saying, "It ain't over til it's over," or, "The opera isn't over until the fat frog sinks."
In this story from India, a poor boy's dream of having a drum takes him on an unlikely journey of discovery. He meets several people who guide him along the way. In time, he learns to make his own "magic" in this world.
In this chain story from Cuba, Rooster learns that he needs a lot of help from his friends to get cleaned up in time for Heron's party. Then the real fun begins.
In this story from Peru, we meet a baker who is so stingy that he wants to charge people just for smelling his baked goods. When the baker takes his case to court, the wise judge decides to teach the greedy man a well-deserved lesson.
In this story from China, when a woodcutter finds a magic pot that makes two of everything that he puts inside of it, he thinks all of his troubles have disappeared! Or have his troubles merely doubled?
In this story, a farmer and his wife match wits with a large, mean-spirited ogre. If they cant outwit him, they will end up with no crops of their own to eat or sell. This whimsically drawn story is based on an old Swedish folktale.
Three brothers embark on separate journeys to different parts of the world to fulfill their father's dying wish. In their journeys, they visit distant lands, find curious treasures, and learn the true meaning of unselfish giving when they need to work together to save a life.
In Puerto Rico, there are many stories about Juan Bobo, a young man with a good heart, but little common sense. In this tale, Juan Bobo's mother tells him to take care of their pig while she goes to church. When the pig won't stop grunting, Juan Bobo decides that the pig must want to go to church as well.
Many years ago, the proudest animal in the jungle was not the peacock. The proudest animal was the tiger. In this timeless folktale from Vietnam, we see how Tiger's pride leads him to covet wisdom and, with the help of a wise farmer, earn his stripes.
When the head of a Buddhist monastery decides to pick a successor, he sends the young monks out to accomplish one task. The monks must each steal something, but they must steal in such a way that no one knows they have stolen.
In this story from India, a farmers three lazy sons don't want to work, they just want to make a lot of gold. When their mother tells them about gold buried in the field, they discover the value of a good day's work.
In this collection of three lesser known Aesop Fables, you will learn why bats fly at night, why you should pick your friends carefully, and why even a tiny ant could be your guardian angel.
A big, bully lion is no match for our old friend - the Clever Monkey in this retelling of a classic story from West Africa.
When two greedy jungle cats discover a large piece of cheese, they can't decide how to divide it fairly. The clever monkey comes to their rescue. Or so they think. After reading this trickster tale from West Africa, you will think twice before asking a monkey for help.
In this classic story from China, we learn why the sun comes up in the morning and goes down at night. We also discover why a certain farm animal is there every morning to greet the sun.
In this trickster tale from Africa, Anansi learns the value of being a good host. He also learns the truth of the old saying, what goes around, comes around.
Anansi is invited to three parties and wants to attend them all. He gives each of his hosts a rope to tug, ties the other end around his own waist, and waits to be summoned when the food is served -- but when all of the food is ready at the same time, Anansi is caught in the middle!
In this story from West Africa, Anansi the spider uses his wits, his trickster skills, and the help of his friends to bring light to the world.
In this trickster tale from Africa, Anansi proves to Elephant and Killer Whale that in a battle of wits, brains definitely outdo brawn.
Did you ever wonder why spiders have no hair? After reading this African trickster tale, you will know. When Anansi goes to help his grandmother, he can't resist her steaming, hot pot of beans. Co-authors Bobby and Sherry Norfolk take a wonderful new look at a classic African story.
The baker, Van Amsterdam becomes known in Colonial America for baking his St. Nicholas cookies but his greed drives hime to he become stingy in his business. When an old woman buys a dozen cookies from him and expects to receive 13, he withholds the last one. Unfotunately, his business goes downhill until the day she returns for 12 more cookies. But this time he gives her an extra measure and the custom of offering a "baker's dozen" or 13 items spreads throughout the colonies.
In this Choctaw variant of Aesop's fable "The Tortoise and the Hare," master storyteller Tim Tingle reveals some unexpected twists and expands the cast to include a wild turkey, a colony of ants, and a cheering squad of Little Bitty Turtles as well. When Rabbit boastfully challenges Turtle to a race, he gets his comeuppance and Turtle gets a little assist from his winged friend, Turkey. In the process, we learn why Turtle's shell is cracked and why you never see Rabbit racing Turtle today. The bold and vibrant illustrations capture not only the grasslands of the High Plains but also the demeanor of its animal inhabitants and the humor of the tale.
Deep in the Cajun country of Louisiana, Alligator is king of the swamps king to everyone that is, except a sassy clever old Dog. Storyteller J.J. Reneaux's musical rendering of this classic Cajun folktale explains how the feud between Alligator and Dog got started in the first place. When Alligator finally corners Dog in his swamphole, he falls for the oldest trick in the book and barely escapes with his life back to where he belongs. After being tricked by Dog, Alligator thinks he's a lot smarter. As he floats alone in the dark swamp water waiting for Dog, he promises that next time he'll get that Dog for sure. But will he? The combination of Cajun dialect and beautifully illustrated acrylic paintings, capture the unique flavor and mystery of the region.
Sandpiper finds her daily stroll on the beach interrupted by Whale, who boasts that he is ruler of the sea. Sandpiper responds with equal bravado, asserting her rights to the sand and seawater. Soon the rivals are calling in their cousins, and the beach and sea are filled with shorebirds and sea mammals of every stripe. The standoff grows ominous as Whale leads his cousins in an assault on the beach, eating the sand from under the birds. Sandpiper retaliates by ordering her cousins to drink up the ocean. Soon the landscape is filled with fish, crabs, and sea creatures gasping for survival. How will this end? The outcome of this timely yet timeless nature tale suggests that we are all connected in the ecological chain.