Fables from Around the World

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1993
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Book, Whole
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Here is a student reader. Printed on the inside of the front cover is a standard school form proclaiming that the book is school district (or state or county or parish) property and leaving spaces for those who borrow the booklet. The 32 inside pages are on a different paper stock. They present five fables and a short bibliography. The first of the fables is The Moon in the Well (Tibet, 4). A leader leads a whole group of monkeys into a well to get back the moon that he sees in there. Señora Hen from Uruguay is a version of UP, well told. The Foolish Donkey is a form of DLS that unites Tom Paxton's verse with Fulvio Testa's illustrations. It is described as from Aesop. Turtle's Race with Bear is a Native American fable that employs an old fairy-tale motif: bear is supposed to run along the bank of a frozen pond, while turtle swims under the layer of ice and pops up in various holes along the bear's way. Of course it is a different turtle popping up in each hole, but the bear does not know that! The Ape, the Cats, and the Cheese is described as an Arabic fable. The ape divides the cheese and nibbles away at both pieces, supposedly to make them equal. It helps in this version that the cats had stolen the cheese from a mouse! The last page recommends Paul Galdone's The Monkey and the Crocodile; Lorinda Bryan Cauley's The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse; M.J. Wheeler's Fox Tales; and Demi's Reflective Fables. This is a worthwhile booklet. Each of five copies that I got through eBay in one lot is marked K. Jones on the inside front-cover.
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Scott Foresman
ScottForesman: HarperCollins
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