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Children's Literature

Books in BU's Juvenile Collection

Folk Tales

Abu Ali: three tales of the Middle East. / Dorothy O. Van Woerkom. 1976. Fic V285a. Abu Ali counts his donkeys.--Abu Ali fools his friends.--Abu Ali fools himself. (Turkey)

 Beat the story-drum, pum-pum / retold and illustrated by Ashley Bryan.  1980. 398.209669 B369.  Coretta Scott King Award Winner.   Hen and Frog.--Why Bush Cow and Elephant are bad friends.--The husband who counted the spoonfuls.--Why Frog and Snake never play together.--How animals got their tails. (Nigeria)

Beautiful blackbird / Ashley Bryan.  2003. 398.209689404528 B915b. Coretta Scott King Award Winner. In a story of the Ila people, the colorful birds of Africa ask Blackbird, whom they think is the most beautiful of birds, to decorate them with some of his "blackening brew."

The boy, the baker, the miller, and more. / Harold Berson. 1974. 398.22 B535b.  In return for a piece of bread he requests from the baker’s wife, a little boy is sent on an errand that leads to an errand that leads to an errand. ... (France)

Bruh Rabbit and the tar baby girl / Virginia Hamilton.  2003. 398.208996073 H221b.  In this retelling, using Gullah speech, of a familiar story the wily Brer Rabbit outwits Brer Fox who has set out to trap him.

Burmese and Thai fairy tales. / Eleanor Brockett. 1967. 398.209591 B864b.  A collection of humorous folk tales in which good luck is often more valued than intelligence and virtue is not always rewarded.

Can you guess my name?: traditional tales around the world / retold by Judy Sierra.  2002.  
398.2 S572c.  A collection of fifteen folktales from all over the world, including stories that resemble "The Three Pigs," "The Bremen Town Musicians," and "Rumpelstiltskin."

The cat’s purr. / Ashley Bryan. 1985. 398.2452 B915c.  Cat and Rat are friends, but when Rat tricks Cat and plays the cat drum, which only cats may play, Cat ends up swallowing the drum, and that is how he got his purr. (West Indies)

The donkey prince. / M. Jean Craig. 1977. 398.20943 C886d.  A retelling of the Grimm tale about the prince who, as a punishment for his parents’ greed, was shaped like a donkey.

Echoes of the elders: the stories and paintings of Chief Lelooska / edited by Christine Normandin.  1997.  OVERSIZE 398.208997 L543e.

First Woman and the strawberry: a Cherokee legend / retold by Gloria Dominic. 1996. 398.208997 D671f.  Tells the story of an argument between First Man and First Woman and how the first strawberry was created.

The friends of Abu Ali: three more tales of the Middle East / Dorothy O. Van Woerkom. 1978. 398.20956 V285f.   Retells three more adventures of muddle-headed Abu Ali including "The Bag of Rice," "Cake for Sale," and "The Donkey’s Shadow." (Turkey)

Golem / David Wisniewski.  1996. 398.209569 W815g.  Caldecott Award Winner.  A saintly rabbi miraculously brings to life a clay giant who helps him watch over the Jews of sixteenth-century Prague.

The Great Minu / Beth P. Wilson. 1974. 398.2096 W746g.  Not understanding what he is told about the riches he sees in Accra, a poor country farmer decides his simple life is better. (West Africa)

The girl who spun gold / Virginia Hamilton.  2000. 398.2 H221g.  In this West Indian version of the Rumpelstiltskin story, Lit’mahn spins thread into gold cloth for the king’s new bride.

The girl who dreamed only geese, and other tales of the Far North / told by Howard Norman.  1997. 398.2089971 N842g.  The day puffins netted Hid-Well -- Noah hunts a woolly mammoth -- Why the rude visitor was flung by walrus -- Uteritsoq and the duckbill dolls -- The wolverine’s secret -- The girl who watched in the nighttime -- The man who married a seagull -- Home among the giants -- How the narwhal got its tusk -- The girl who dreamed only geese

How many spots does a leopard have? and other tales / Julius Lester. 1989. 398.2096 L642h.  An illustrated collection of twelve folk tales, ten African and two Jewish.

Jonnikin and the flying basket; French folk and fairy tales / Ruth Manning-Sanders. 1969. 398.20944 M284j.  The gold dragoon.--Jonnikin and the flying basket.--The antmolly birds.--The king of the crows.--The night of four times.--The little milleress.--The thirteen flies.--The handsome apprentice.--The small men and the weaver.--Tam and Tessa.--The snake monster.--The young shepherd.--The prince of the seven golden cows.--The sword of the stone.--The son of the King of Spain.--The magic wand.--The nine white sheep. (France)

The lion & the mouse / Jerry Pinkney.  2009.  398.245 P6557ℓ.  2010 Caldecott Award Winner.  In this wordless retelling of an Aesop fable set in the African Serengeti, an adventuresome mouse proves that even a small creature is capable of great deeds when she rescues the King of the Jungle.

Lord of the cranes: a Chinese tale / retold by Kerstin Chen. 2000. 398.209510452832 C518h.  To test the compassion of the people in the city, the lord of the cranes leaves his home high in the mountains and travels there disguised as a beggar, but only one man, the innkeeper, passes the test.

Land of heroes: a retelling of the Kalevala. / Ursula Synge. 1978. 398.209489 S993β.  Retells, from the Kalevala, the adventures of three Finnish heroes who are rivals for the hand of the Maiden of Pohja. (Finland)

Love and roast chicken: a trickster tale from the Andes Mountains / Barbara Knutson.  2004. 398.2098045293592 K74L.  In this folktale from the Andes, a clever guinea pig repeatedly outsmarts the fox that wants to eat him for dinner.

Manu and the talking fish / written by Roberta Arenson.  2000. 398.20954 A6817m.  The ancient Indian story of Manu, who is rewarded when he saves the life of a little fish. The fish tells him what he must do to save himself and the world from destruction in the coming flood.

Mariana and the merchild: a folk tale from Chile / Caroline Pitcher. 2000. 398.20983012 P682m.  A childless old woman is given a merbaby to raise until the child can safely return to the sea.

Martina, the beautiful cockroach: a Cuban folktale / Carmen Agra Deedy.  2007.  Fic D311m.  In this humorous retelling of a Cuban folktale, a cockroach interviews her suitors in order to decide whom to marry. 

The mitten: a Ukrainian folktale / Jan Brett. 1989. 398.2094771 B845m.  Several animals sleep snugly in Nicki’s lost mitten until the bear sneezes.

Mouse match: a Chinese folktale / Ed Young.  1997.  398.20951045293233 Y711m.  When a father mouse goes to the sun, cloud, wind, and wall in search of the strongest husband for his daughter, he is surprised to find that a mouse is the best match.

Nacho and Lolita / by Pam Muñoz Ryan.  2005.  398.2 R989n.  A very rare pitacohi bird falls in love with a swallow and plucks his colorful feathers to transform dry, barren San Juan Capistrano into a haven of flowers and flowing water, which the swallows can easily find when returning from their annual migration.

New clothes for New Year’s day / by Hyun-Joo Bae.  2007.  398.209519 B1391n.  A young Korean girl describes the new clothes that she will be wearing to celebrate the New Year.

Not one damsel in distress: world folktales for strong girls / Jane Yolen. 2000.  398.22082 Y549n.    A collection of thirteen traditional tales from various parts of the world, with the main character of each being a fearless, strong, heroic, and resourceful woman.

On to Widecombe Fair. / Patricia Lee Gauch. 1978. 398.20942 G265o  Seven men who don’t like to walk borrow an old mare to ride to the Widecombe fair. (England)

The orphan boy: a Maasai story / Tololwa M. Mollel. 1990. 398.21 M726o.  Though delighted that an orphan boy has come into his life, an old man becomes insatiably curious about the boy’s mysterious powers. (Kenya)

The people could fly: American Black folktales / Virginia Hamilton. 1985. 398.208996073 H221p.  Retold Afro-American folktales of animals, fantasy, the supernatural, and desire for freedom, born of the sorrow of the slaves, but passed on in hope. (U.S.)

Red Hawk and the Sky sisters: a Shawnee legend / Gloria Dominic.  1996.  398.2089973 D671r.  Relates the story of the skilled hunter Red Hawk who captures and marries the youngest daughter of Bright Star, only to have her return to the sky with their son. 

The road to Camlann / Rosemary Sutcliff. 1982. 398.22 S965r.  The evil Mordred, plotting against his father King Arthur, implicates the Queen and Sir Lancelot in treachery and brings about the downfall of Camelot and the Round Table. (England)

The sea king’s daughter: a Russian legend / retold by Aaron Shepard.  1997. OVERSIZE 398.2094701 S547s.  A talented musician from Novgorod plays so well that the Sea King wants him to marry one of his daughters.

The serpent prince; folk tales from Northeastern Thailand. / Kermit Krueger. 1969. 398.209593 K94s.  A collection of nineteen folk tales which reflect the ancient and diverse cultural backgrounds of the people of the Mekhong plateau of Thailand. (Thailand)

Song of the hermit thrush: an Iroquois legend / retold by Gloria Dominic.  1996.

398.209747 D671s.  The animals and birds of the forest hold a contest to choose which will sing a song to greet the day.

Stories from old Egypt / Edward and Marguerite Dolch. 1964. 398.20962 D662s.  Twelve tales adapted from the writings of the ancient Egyptians, including the Pharaoh’s Dream and the story of Osiris and Isis. (Egypt)

Tales from old Ireland / retold by Malachy Doyle.  2000. 398.209415 D7545t.

Tales our abuelitas told: a Hispanic folktale collection / F. Isabel Campoy and Alma Flor Ada.  2006.  398.208968 C1989t. Presents the authors’ retellings of twelve traditional tales accompanied by information on origins and different versions.

Tibetan tales for little Buddhas / Naomi C. Rose.  2004. 398.2 R797t.  Three traditional tales about mystical beings, yaks, an enormous sow, and yeti introduce Tibetan culture and wisdom. Includes a foreword from the Dalai Lama, map of Tibet, glossary of Tibetan terms, and description of a Tibetan chant. 

The three princes: a tale from the Middle East. Eric A. Kimmel. 1994. 398.21 K49t. A princess promises to marry the prince who finds the most precious treasure.

 Tiger woman / Laurence Yep.  1997.   398.2 Y47t.  When she refuses to share her food with a beggar, an old woman finds herself transformed into various animals, until she learns a lesson about greed.

Tongues of jade. / Laurence Yep. 1991. 398.2089951073 Y47t.  A retelling of seventeen Chinese American folktales from a variety of Chinese communities in the United States.

The treasure / Uri Shulevitz. 1978. 398.2 S5625t.  A retelling of the traditional English tale in which a poor man follows the advice of his dream and is eventually led to a treasure. (England)

Traveling to Tondo: a tale of the Nkundo of Zaire. / Verna Aardema. 1991. 398.2452 A113t.  On his way to his wedding, with his friends as attendants, a civet cat meets with extraordinary and unexpected delays. (Zaire)

Warrior son of a warrior son: a Masai tale / retold by Melinda Lilly.  1998.  398.2089965 L7299w.  A Masai folktale about how the tiny caterpillar outsmarts the other animals even though they are much bigger and stronger. 

Wanyana and matchmaker frog: a Bagandan tale. / Melinda Lilly. 1998. 398.2089963957. L7299w.  A frog repays Wanyana’s kindness by helping her pick the right man to be her husband. (Uganda)

What about me? / Ed Young.  2002. 398.2088297 Y71w.  A young boy determinedly follows the instructions of the Grand Master in the hope of gaining knowledge, only to be surprised as how he acquires it. Based on a Sufi tale.

When the moon is full: supernatural stories from the old Pennsylvania mountains / Robin Moore.  1994. 398.20974805 M823w.  A collection of tales of the supernatural based on the traditional stories told in the mountains of Central Pennsylvania.

Why mosquitoes buzz in people’s ears: a West African tale / retold by Verna Aardema ; pictures by Leo and Diane Dillon.  1975. 
398.20966 A113w.   1976 Caldecott Award Winner.  
Mosquito tells Iguana a tall tale that sets off a chain reaction that ends in jungle disaster.

Why the sun and the moon live in the sky. 1968. 398.20967 D275w.  An African folktale tells how the sun and water once lived on earth as friends, but because the sun failed to build his house large enough, he and his wife, the moon, were driven into the sky when the water came to visit them. (Nigeria)

The wishing pearl, and other tales of Vietnam. Jon & Kay Nielsen. 1969. 398.209597 N669w.  Five traditional Vietnamese fairy tales: The Wishing Pearl; The Heart of Crystal; The Student and the Frog; Tu Thuc and the Fairy Queen; and The Student and the Painting.

Yonder Mountain: a Cherokee legend / as told by Robert H. Bushyhead.  2002.   398.20899755 B978y.  A Cherokee chief chooses his successor by asking three candidates to climb a mountain, thus testing their character and strength.

Zimani’s drum: a Malawian tale / retold by Melinda Lilly.  1998. 398.209689702 L7299z.  While out walking with his brother Cikungwa, blind Zimani has an encounter with Mkango the lion and tries to trick him before he has a chance to kill them. 

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