This introductory collection of ten folktales from many cultures will delight young and old readers alike. From the U.S., Africa, Russia, Native American, Europe and others, some of the timeless selections are "The Acorn Tree," "The Thirsty Crow," "The Greedy Cat," and "Owl Feathers." When used for a read-aloud, children will appreciate the simple, yet detailed, color illustrations.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2A collection of 10 folktales, ranging from Aesop to LaFontaine, to African and Jataka tales, to Puerto Rican and Native American stories. Although Rockwell has simplified the language, she has not tampered with the messages. Her colored-pencil illustrations, done mostly in pastel hues, have a wide-eyed, childlike quality. With a slight turn of a line, the artist achieves a variety of expressions: open-mouthed honking geese, startled cats, bonny peasants, and charming flower children. There is a picture on every page, maintaining the unity of the book's design. A solid blue line runs along the bottom of each page, ending with an acorn design next to the page number. This makes for a handsome, unified edition. The real advantage of this volume, however, is the page of notes, which includes not only sources, but also the motifs and allied tales from other cultures. The Acorn Tree should encourage parents to look to the originals for more detailed versions and richer language. Some early readers could tackle Rockwell's text on their own. A good choice for gift giving or for large collections where parents request short bedtime stories.Harriett Fargnoli, Great Neck Library, NY
Janice Del Negro
This is a handy collection of traditional tales, retold in an easygoing style, that is just right for reading aloud. Rockwell's 10 retellings include Aesop's "Thirsty Crow" and the Puerto Rican tale "Owl Feathers." The watercolor illustrations, at least one on every page, are as cozy as the text, their soft colors and big, rounded shapes adding a generous amount of appeal. For beginning storytellers, the book is a solid roundup, and Rockwell's source notes make it a good springboard to other story versions. Young independent readers will also be charmed by the selection.