Five minutes after his birth, Johnny Kaw is over six feet tall and still growing. When he outgrows his crib and even their town, his parents decide to move west where "little" Johnny can have plenty of room to play. After the family crosses the wide Missouri River to Kansas, Johnny sits down to play with his dog. His bottom ends up making the valley where his family will settle. And when Johnny clears stones from a field so his father can plow, he ends up creating the Rocky Mountains in the process. The legendary folk hero shapes the state's landscape by carving out valleys and creating prairies with his bare hands. Why, he even takes on a tornado when it threatens the family farm. Kansas native Devin Scillian spins a rollicking, rhyming yarn based on the tall tale of Johnny Kaw. Comedic, exaggerated artwork from artist Brad Sneed brings this character to BIG life.
The Pine Barrens region in New Jersey has long been a place of mystery, with its dark pine groves, black swamps, and dank bogs, oftentimes shrouded in mist and fog. Reputed to be haunted by spirits, its an unsettling place to be sure. But of all the mysterious happenings and sights to be found in the Pine Barrens, there is none so intriguing as the Jersey Devil. Since its first reported sighting in 1735, local lore has it that a devil-like creature with the head of a horse, the wings of a bat, and the hooves of a goat has menaced townspeople, frightened livestock, and caused all manner of trouble over the years. Is the Jersey Devil real? Award-winning author Trinka Hakes Noble weaves a spellbinding tale about the origins of the legend of the Jersey Devil. Atmospheric illustrations by artist Gerald Kelley bring the tale to spooky life.
Finn McCool is the largest giant in all of Ireland. He's a fierce warrior, even beating the giant Culcullan and saving Ireland from the Scots. Helpful and kind, he helps the farmers bring in the hay. And everyone in the village of Drumnahoon admires him. "He's the best-hearted man that ever walked on Ireland's green grass." But for all his strength, courage, and goodness, there's one thing that Finn lacks. He's just not smart. And he knows it. When a wise man living in a nearby village tells Finn about a magical red salmon with the wisdom of the world, Finn sets out to catch the fish. And he learns a thing or two about himself in the process. An author of more than 250 children's books, Eve Bunting has won numerous awards and honors, including a Pen International Special Achievement award for her contribution to Children's Literature. In 2002 she was chosen to be Irish American Woman of the Year by the Irish American Heritage Committee of New York. She lives in Pasadena, California. Zachary Pullen's picture-book illustrations have won awards and garnered starred reviews. He has been honored several times with acceptance into the prestigious Society of Illustrators juried shows and Communication Arts Illustration Annual of the best in current illustration. Zak lives in Wyoming.
Readers will meet the fascinating main characters featured in many myths and legends. Award-winning children's book author and former U.S. Children's Poet Laureate J. Patrick Lewis not only examines creatures of popular legends such as mummies, werewolves, and zombies, but he also introduces lesser-known-but-just-as-menacing monsters such as the Roc and the giant called Xing Tian. Includes origins of the Frankenstein story as well as creatures such as the Loch Ness Monster, Baba Yaga, and the Phoenix. Monster, mystery, and fantasy fans of all ages will enjoy this alphabetical tribute.
Paul Bunyan has a BIG problem. He's in love but the lady who has caught his eye will have nothing to do with him. What's a giant lumberjack to do? When Paul Bunyan meets pretty Lucette, he knows she's the gal for him. After all, she's so tall she can't fit into an ordinary cabin. She can churn butter into a thick creamy river, and when she cleans house she can twirl up a tornado! Why, it's a match made in heaven! But to win Lucette's heart, Paul must prove his worth in a love test. Acclaimed storyteller Marybeth Lorbiecki brings together history and legend for a rollicking American tall tale. Enchanting artwork tenderly gives life to the BIGGEST love story the north woods region has ever seen. Marybeth Lorbiecki has written more than 20 award-winning books, including the acclaimed Jackie's Bat and Sister Anne's Hands (IRA Best Books of the Year 1999). History and conservation are favorite themes in her work. Marybeth lives in Hudson, Wisconsin. Rene Graef is well known as the illustrator for the "Kirsten" books in the American Girl children's book series, and has also illustrated many My First Little House books. Rene's other work with Sleeping Bear Press includes B is for Bookworm: A Library Alphabet. Rene lives in Cedarburg, Wisconsin.
The great Gitchee Manitou has sent Nanabush the Giant Hare to the new north country to give the first animals their names and special markings. But trickster that he is, Nanabush prefers to play silly games. When Ahmik the Giant Beaver lures Nanabush into a chase across the newly formed land and water, their game etches out a beautiful wonderland of islands and ponds and lakes. Readers young and old will enjoy the legend behind the creation of the state whose very name Wisk-on-sin means "place of the beaver." Kathy-jo Wargin's most recent picture book honoring the spirit of Wisconsin is The Legend of Old Abe: A Civil War Eagle. Her other books include B is for Badger: AWisconsin Alphabet and The Legend of the Lady's Slipper (Upper Midwest Bookseller's Favorite). Afrequent speaker throughout the country, Kathy-jo lives with her family in Petoskey, Michigan. David Geister also collaborated with Kathy-jo Wargin on The Legend of Minnesota and The Voyageur's Paddle. David is a popular visitor at schools with his costumed portrayals of historic characters. A Wisconsin native, he now lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
According to African Mythology, a lonely Creator made the first human being as separate parts, such as eyes to share the beauty of the garden, a nose to smell the flowers, and legs to skip and run. Finally, a stomach was fashioned. All of the parts enjoyed their functions, except for the stomach, which didn't know what to do. Bored and jealous, the growling, grumbling stomach caused problems for all the others. The angry Creator decided to put all of the parts together so they would have to get along. He placed the stomach right in the middle, but sometimes it still growls. Colorful prose and whimsical illustrations ignite the imagination of young readers. Pamela Duncan Edwards is a prolific author of children's books. Her previous work for Sleeping Bear Press includes O is for Old Dominion: A Virginia Alphabet. She lives in Virginia.Bridget Starr Taylor, a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, lives in New York City. Her illustrations have appeared in The New York Times, Sports Illustrated and Highlights magazine.
Long ago in a faraway place there lived two mothers. One, a humble peasant woman who struggled daily to provide for her children. And the other, a mother spider who also worked hard to care for her family. And although it would appear they were as different as night and day, these two mothers had more in common than would first seem. As the only holiday gift she can give her children, one cold Christmas Eve the peasant woman goes to the forest to get a tree, never noticing that someone has made a home among its branches. During the night, the mother spider spins webs decorating the tree, resulting in a Christmas that neither mother will ever forget. Based on an old Ukrainian story, Trinka Hakes Noble (The Orange Shoes) crafts an original heartwarming tale of the grace that can be found in the true spirit of Christmas. Trinka Hakes Noble's numerous picture books include The Scarlet Stockings Spy (IRA Teachers' Choice 2005), The Last Brother, The Orange Shoes (IRA Teachers' Choice 2008), and Apple Tree Christmas. Ms. Noble lives in northern New Jersey. Stephen Costanza attended the Philadelphia College of Art. His picture books are Mozart Finds a Melody, Noodle Man: The Pasta Superhero, and Ten Big Toes and a Prince's Nose. He lives in Belfast, Maine.
Introduces the Greek god Zeus and explains his importance; features well-known Greek myths about this god; and includes map of ancient Greece and family tree of the Greek gods.
Introduces the Greek god Hermes and explains his importance; features well-known Greek myths about this god; and includes map of ancient Greece and family tree of the Greek gods.
Introduces the Greek god Hephaestus and explains his importance; features well-known Greek myths about this god; and includes map of ancient Greece and family tree of the Greek gods.
Introduces the Greek goddess Hera and explains her importance; features well-known Greek myths about this god; and includes map of ancient Greece and family tree of the Greek gods.
Introduces the Greek god Hades and explains his importance; features well-known Greek myths about this god; and includes map of ancient Greece and family tree of the Greek gods.
Introduces the Greek god Eros and explains his importance; features well-known Greek myths about this god; and includes map of ancient Greece and family tree of the Greek gods.
Introduces the Greek god Ares and explains his importance; features well-known Greek myths about this god; and includes map of ancient Greece and family tree of the Greek gods.
Introduces the Greek goddess Artemis and explains her importance; features well-known Greek myths about this god; and includes map of ancient Greece and family tree of the Greek gods.
Introduces the Greek goddess Athena and explains her importance; features well-known Greek myths about this god; and includes map of ancient Greece and family tree of the Greek gods.
Introduces the Greek goddess Aphrodite and explains her importance; features well-known Greek myths about this god; and includes map of ancient Greece and family tree of the Greek gods.
Introduces the Greek god Apollo and explains his importance; features well-known Greek myths about this god; and includes map of ancient Greece and family tree of the Greek gods.
Do you know who started the first volunteer fire company in the United States? Do you know who the first woman firefighter was? Or did you know that firefighters trace their heritage back to the knights of the Crusades? Sirens and Smoke is full of stories of bravery and tradition. You'll read about: the brave guards who fought fire in ancient Greek and Roman communities; the long-ago firefighters who battled the great fires that swept through Europe's big cities; the community spirit that grew in the New World. the African Americans; the women who added their strengths to fighting fires; and September 11, 2001, when firefighters demonstrated their heroism. Fire can be an enemy - but down through the ages, firefighters have risked their lives to protect others against it. Their folklore reveals a long tradition of courage.
A patchwork quilt . . . a handmade mandolin . . . a rag doll . . . a wooden chair - all these things are examples of folk arts and crafts. They are useful objects that are also beautiful. Learn about various kinds of folk art, including: furniture; toys; religious objects; musical instruments; and quilts, clothes, and other fabric arts. In folk traditions, art is a part of everyday life. And people still enjoy folk art today.
Did you know that if you drop a spoon, someone will kiss you soon? Did you ever hear that three spiders crawling on the wall are a sign you will soon hear of a death? Or did you know that if rabbits play in a dusty road, rain is on its way? These beliefs are folk customs found in North America. Discover more, including: ways to predict the future; weather lore; and good luck superstitions. Folklore is shared through customs and traditions. These are patterns that shape our lives. Even in today's world, we still depend on these old ways to make sense out of life.
You may turn on the CD player or the radio when you want to hear music, but once, in the days before modern technology, music was enjoyed whenever groups of people got together. You probably know some folk songs, a song that was passed along from person to person. Learn about: types of folk songs; folk instruments; folk music's European and African roots; Cajun music; the music of Appalachia; Hispanic music; and today's folk music. Modern music - Rock, Country, R&B, and more - is rooted deep in North Americas musical folklore. And folk music is still alive and well today.
Have you heard these common proverbs? Let sleeping dogs lie. Where there's smoke, there's fire. You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink. Or what about these riddles? What is black and white and red (read) all over? Why did the chicken cross the road? Why is 6 afraid of 7? Proverbs and riddles are tiny, bite-size pieces of folklore. They make us think. They tease our brains. They may make us laugh. But most of all, they tell us something about who we are and how we see the world.
Have you heard of Anansi, the mischief-making spider from Africa? Do you know about the Blackfoot woman who married a star? Or have you heard stories about Jack, the hero who always wins both the treasure and the princess's heart? Discover stories from North America's folklore, including tales about: why the world is the way it is; heroes and fools; ghosts and horrors; and death and the world to come. Stories have power. They share the wisdom of other generations. They stir our imagination. They give us hope and courage. And sometimes they just make us laugh!