2005 to 2009

2005

2005 Aesop and the CEO: Powerful Business Insights from Aesop's Ancient Fables. David C. Noonan. Hardbound. Dust jacket. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson. $11.55 from amazon, com, June, '05.

This book is a pleasant surprise. It uses Aesop's fables well, in contrast to a number of books that apply Aesop's fables in a forced fashion. Noonan offers nine sections covering such subjects as "Rewards and Incentives," "Management and Leadership," "Winning Business Strategies," and "Human Resources." Each section has from three to seven stories from Aesop. For each story there is a title, a narrative, "Aesop's Moral," Noonan's discussion (titled "Perspective"), a "Business Moral," and a source for further reading. The key to getting into the book, I believe, is to watch the "Business Morals." They give Noonan's particular take on the fable, developed in the "Perspective" section. It looks as though his overall source for fables is the Watermill Press edition of 1985. Well done!

2005 Aesop and the CEO: Powerful Business Insights from Aesop's Ancient Fables. David C. Noonan. Uncorrected Proof. Paperbound. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson. $9 from Jack Kirby, Myrtle Beach, SC, through eBay, Nov., '05. 

This paperbound copy seems exactly to replicate the hardbound copy I have already catalogued. One distinguishing feature that I can notice lies in the "000" listing for every item in the beginning T of C. Another is the information listed on the back cover, including the publicity the book will receive and its projected publication date. In fact, the book seems to exist only in hardcover form. Let me quote what I wrote for the normal catalogue entry. This book is a pleasant surprise. It uses Aesop's fables well, in contrast to a number of books that apply Aesop's fables in a forced fashion. Noonan offers nine sections covering such subjects as "Rewards and Incentives," "Management and Leadership," "Winning Business Strategies," and "Human Resources." Each section has from three to seven stories from Aesop. For each story there is a title, a narrative, "Aesop's Moral," Noonan's discussion (titled "Perspective"), a "Business Moral," and a source for further reading. The key to getting into the book, I believe, is to watch the "Business Morals." They give Noonan's particular take on the fable, developed in the "Perspective" section. It looks as though his overall source for fables is the Watermill Press edition of 1985. Well done!

2005 Aesop's Fables. Saviour Pirotta. Illustrated by Richard Johnson. First printing. Dust jacket. Hardbound. Boston: Kingfisher: Houghton Mifflin. $12.95 from powells.com, Sept., '05. 

This is a good book! Each of the eight fables gives an autobiographical Sitz im Leben for Aesop's telling of the story. For example, the foolhardy plans of his fellow slave-boy friends for running away and becoming pirates are a prelude to Aesop's telling them BC. The book has warm, colorful contemporary illustrations. LM (14) is particularly well told. GGE (36) is presented with an unusual turn: the riches from earlier golden eggs vanish when the goose is killed. An unusual situation explains the first invitation in FS (50): the fox owed the deer a favor, who happened to be with the stork while the fox was cooking up some recently stolen food. When invited, the deer said that she could not make it, but recommended that the stork take her place.

2005 Aesop's Fables. Edited and Compiled by Zachary Miller. Illustrated by children from the Christian Home Educators Association, Altoona, PA. Introduction by G.K. Chesterton. Paperbound. Lima, NY: Dorst Publishing: Elim Publishing. $13.95 from Powell's, Portland, August, '05. 

The texts are taken from the V.S. Vernon Jones edition of 1912. The sixteen children who illustrate some twenty-seven fables here are listed on 5. The volume includes G.K. Chesterton's introduction. I find that introduction helpful in saying that these fables belong not to Aesop but to humanity. It is less helpful when it identifies fable by its need to include an animal and when it makes Aesop a collector of fables. The best of the illustrations, I believe, are "The Cat and the Mice" (39); "The Boy and the Filberts" (52 and cover); "The Mice and the Weasels" (60); and especially "The Old Lion" (63). I never know when an oddity like this book will show up! Congratulations to Zachary Miller who organized the printing of the book.

2005 Aesop's Fables. (Texts from Robert and Olivia Temple's Penguin Edition). Illustrated by Phillip Marsden. Paperbound. No place mentioned: Compromise Comics Enterprise. £1 from Phillip Marsden, Newcastle, UK, Dec., '05.

Here are twelve fables on eight pages -- and the back-cover. Another piece on the back-cover announces "A selection of timelessly poignant vignettes from the celebrated author of "The Boy Who Cried 'Wolf,'" "The Tortoise and the Hare," and "The Camel Who Shat in the River." (Regretably not included in this volume)." True to the style of comics, the visuals carry the stories here. On one page, three fables are done in three strips across the page. The first of these is one of the author's best, "The Sick Man and the Doctor." The facial expressions of the sick man in all four cells reveal his feelings. Marsden's presentation of "The Amorous Lion and the Ploughman" may make us wonder for the first time what the girl thought about all this! Marsden's portrait of Aesop on the inside back-cover is fine. I enjoy this author's humor. Here is how he finishes the short blurb on Aesop: "His pithy anecdotes are as funny, satirical and educatonal today as they were 2,500 years ago. Sort of." Sort of! I also enjoy the author's copyright claim on the back of the front cover: ""All remaining material, for what it's worth, is c2005 Phillip Marsden. There's probably some kind of fable in there somewhere!"

2005 Aesop's Fables. V.S. Vernon Jones. Illustrated by Arthur Rackham. With an introduction and notes by D.L. Ashliman. Third printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: Barnes & Noble Classics: Barnes & Noble Books. $5 from Black Oak Books, Berkeley, July, '10.

Barnes & Noble Classics apparently first published this book in 2003, perhaps in paperback. At first I thought this just another reprint -- and there have been many -- of Jones and Rackham's 1912 Heineman edition. This book is more than that, and my hat is off to Barnes & Noble for what they have added to that original book. The pre-title pages offer a list of nineteen well-known Aesopic proverbs. A chronology places Aesop and reports about him in time and traces key steps in the publication of fables as we know them. Ashliman's "Introduction" then gives a good sense of fable, its history, and its contributions. The opening T of C numbers the 284 fables that follow. Many at least of Rackham's black-and-white illustrations are included, though none of his colored illustrations. A glossary starts on 245. A helpful appendix on 249-51 gives the Aarne-Thompson Type Numbers for many fables. Further elements give a sense of some works inspired by Aesop's fables, of comments and questions on Aesop's fables, and of further reading. Last of all is an AI of the fables. All of this is hard to beat for a list-price of $7.95!

2005 Aesop's Fables. Ai Geping. First edition. Paperbound. Xi'an, China: Open Your Ears: Xi'an Jiaotong University Press. $12 from peiyantu, Hangzhou, China, through eBay, Sept., '11.

Forty-one fables on 114 pages, with vocabulary, translations, and "listening points" for each fable. The listening points are explained in Chinese and repeated on the accompanying pair of audio cassettes; these idiomatic phrases may be the strongest point of this combined publication. There is a colorful FC on the cover and, in black-and-white, on the title-page. Apparently the English version was copyrighted in 2003 by Happy House, a subsidiary of Darakwon Publishing Company. There are occasional simple small black-and-white illustrations (e.g. 18, 36, 42). The accompanying tapes feature good native American speakers. I see some references to 2008 on the verso of the title-page, but I will trust the eBay seller's statement that the book was published in 2005 and that this is a copy of its first edition.

2005 Aesop's Fables Conductor Score and Parts. Scott Watson/Margaret Clark. Paperbound. Van Nuys, CA: Alfred Publishing Co. $47.97 from BigEdgeSports.com through eBay, July, '10.

This is a curious find. It is a portfolio of orchestral music for four Aesopic fables: TH, BW, DS, and "The Wolf and His Shadow." The texts are from Margaret Clark's 1990 volume The Best of Aesop's Fables. An early sheet provides the texts for the narrator. Then come scads of sheets for every sort of instrument! The first page in the whole ensemble lists these. I count thirty-one instruments besides the conductor and narrator. If there was an Aesop, would he have expected to show up in this venue? Some instruments have multiple texts because there should be several performers playing those instruments. Thus both Picoolo/1st Flute and 2nd Flute have five copies apiece. The whole ensemble would include, by my count, some seventy-five performers. Alfred Publishing is apparently a -- or even the -- major publisher of musical scores in the USA. By the way, how did I get this from a group called "Big Edge Sports"? 

2005 Aisopose Valmid. Kaarina Rein. Urmas Nemvalts. Hardbound. Tartu: Tartu Ülikooli Kirjastus. $39.99 from Raigo Kirss, Kuressaare, Estonia, through eBay, June, '10.

358 fables in a book of some 189 pages. The bibliography at the end includes Laura Gibbs' edition of 2002. It is followed by a T of C. This is a beautifully manufactured book! Urmas Nemvalts does sixteen lively black-and-white cartoon illustrations. Perhaps the best among them are "The Fox and the Mask" (26); "Two Enemies on a Ship" (58); TB (123); and "The Donkey at the Cliff's Edge" (134). 

2005 An Aesop Adventure: Fables, Songs and Activities for the Elementary Classroom. By Cristi Cary Miller and Sally Raymond. Paperbound. Milwaukee, WI: Hal Leonard Corporation. $24.98 from an unknown source, Sept., '10.

Eight fables are nicely developed in this full-size paperback's 80 pages: "The Farmer and the Stork"; FG; LM; GA; BW; TH; TMCM; and CP. For each, there is a narrative of several pages accompanied by a monochrome design; a page of suggestions for performance and connections to other parts of the curriculum; and a song, done both for piano and -- on a separate page -- as a songsheet. The eight designs appear in color on the front cover. This book is the "Teacher Edition," and its pages are meant to be reproducible. Also available is a performance/accompaniment CD. Created for Grades 1 through 5. I am delighted to see contemporary students getting a chance to experience Aesop and have fun with his fables.

2005 Beastly Tales from Here and There.  Vikram Seth.  Illustrations by Ravi Shankar.  Fifteenth printing.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  London: Penguin Viking.  $9 from Black Oak Books, Berkeley, July, '13.  

This book was originally published by Phoenix House in 1993.  Penguin Viking apparently began publishing the book in 2005.  This copy is for distribution only in Singapore and on the Indian Subcontinent.  I noted in that earlier publication a misspelling of "serenade," which appears correctly here on 66.  The ten tales seem the same here but the pagination is different.  As I wrote there, one finds in this book ten well told, witty tales in verse including two slightly expanded from Aesop but with different contemporary twists.  The eagle dies of grief over the beetle's continual destruction of his eggs wrought out of vengeance for the beetle's old friend, the hare.  And the female hare ends up losing the race but winning all the press acclaim.  The other tales come two each from India, China, the Ukraine, and "the Land of Gup."  "The Mouse and the Snake" from China is a good fable with an ironic ending comment.  "The Cat and the Cock" from the Ukraine uses repeated lines very well.  In #9, the frog manager ruins the nightingale and never knows it.  One black-and-white line sketch with each story, two with the last.

2005 Best of Fables of La Fontaine: Proverbs and Stories (Hebrew). Illustrations by S. Carmeli. Paperbound. Israel: Ofarim Publisher. $7.99 from Book-and-Sefer, June, '11.

This is a large paperback, 8¼" x 11¾". On its 96 pages we find a number of excellent simple colored cartoons. Some of them tell the whole story in a picture. Among the best are DS (9), MSA (21), "The Two Roosters and the Eagle" (63), 2W (73), and 2P (80). There are lots of white-outs on the first page. T of C at the front. Many of the illustrations, including the best, are presented on the two covers. The color printing here seems to me to be excellent!

2005 College and Research Libraries News, September 2005, Vol. 66 No. 8. Stephanie Orphan, Editor-in-chief. Arthur Rackham. Paperbound. Chicago: Association of College and Research Libraries. Gift of the publisher, Sept., '05.

The cover of this issue of ACLR's College and Research Libraries News features Arthur Rackham's "The Travellers and the Plane Tree" from his 1912 Aesop's Fables. The picture is acknowledged as held in the Carlson Fable Collection of Creighton University's Reinert Alumni Library. There is a short description of the collection on 564. 

2005 Dix-neuf Fables. Jean de La Fontaine. Paperbound. Comedie-Française 1680. €20 from Amazon.fr, June, '11.

This is the booklet of 36 pages containing the nineteen fables presented in the Comedie-Française version of "Fables de La Fontaine" directed by Robert Wilson. The booklet contains the nineteen French texts and short notes on La Fontaine and Wilson. I will keep the dvd and book together among the books. Note that there is a fuller artistic book Les Fables de La Fontaine listed under 2004. 

2005 Einhundert Fabeln: Von der Antike bus zur Gegenwart. Bearbeitet von Karl Wilhelm Künz. Paperbound. Husum, Germany: Hamburger Leseheft #118: Hamburger Lesehefte Verlag. €1.30 from Hassbecker's, Heidelberg, July, '07.

The Hamburger Lesehefte Verlag has updated this tried and true text recently, and this is the 2005 version. I have an earlier version listed under "1950?" What has changed? The title on the cover is now in white, rather than black. The back cover sports an ISBN number. The inside of the front cover supplies some bibliographical information, including the year of publication. Curiously, the "Hamburger Lesehefte Verlag" is no longer situated in Hamburg, but is rather in Husum. This volume has smaller outside margins. Though the book is of about the same length, it has been newly typeset, and the format now includes line numbers. I notice that Text #100/15 now has an author mentioned with the text. There is a three-page "Nachwort" at the end. It has the same excellent choice of texts. Let me include some of my comments from that earlier edition. The fables come from around the world but especially from Germany. I enjoyed trying five new fables. Poggio's #36 tells of a man who wanted to get out of the custom that, when one slaughters a pig in winter, he holds a feast for the whole town. He goes to an old man and asks him how to do it. The man answers "Just claim tomorrow morning that your pig has been stolen." That night the old man steals the fellow's pig. The next morning, the robbed man comes to the old man and tells him that he has been robbed. The old man congratulates him on making the claim well. The more urgently the fellow tries to tell the truth, the more the old fellow congratulates him on lying well. Greed and lying punish themselves. Lessing's #58 asks what one should say to poets whose texts seem to fly way over the heads of most of their readers. Perhaps we should say what the nightingale once said to the lark: "Do you fly so high in order not to be heard?" Seidel's #77 presents the toad who looks at a mole hill and says proudly "My, how huge the great wide world is!" Etzel's #83 presents a gnat who is about to bite a stag when the stag takes off in a hurry. The gnat, proud to be so feared, pursues the stag but does not notice the lion behind him pursuing the stag too. When the stag finally is caught in the branches of the forest and the lion pounces on him, the gnat tells the lion that he has the gnat to thank for this booty. The lion does not even glance at him. "The mighty know no gratefulness" the gnat says, and promises never again to hunt a stag. In Kafka's #85, a mouse has run into walls and then complains about the walls coming together in a corner where there is a trap. "Just change the direction in which you run" says a cat and eats her. Do not miss the seventeen versions of GA in #100.

2005 El Gran Tesoro de las Fábulas. Jean de La Fontaine; Traducción de Ma. Del Pilar Ortiz Lovillo. Ilustraciones de Gauthier Dosimont. Primera edición, 6a reimpresión. Hardbound. Querétaro, Mexico: Editions Hemma (Bélgica). $15.94 from amazon.com, Feb., '08.

I am delighted to get a well made book produced in Mexico! Dosimont did several editions for Hemma in the 1990's, and I have no doubt that these illustrations were taken from one or several of those editions. The book varies full-colored pages of illustrations with white pages of text framed by a colored repeated floral pattern. The texts seem to be prose poetry. The illustrations lack precision; it is as though they have been recopied from elsewhere. Key symbols in the book are the printer's icon of the "book and inkwell" at the bottom of many texts and the larger symbol of the crow's tophat and cane on top of a large cheese on 37. The story of DS is told not with a piece of meat or cheese but with a duck whom the dog apparently had in his mouth (47); only the illustration presents the duck, while the text talks of the dog's "comida." Of the large illustrations, do not miss "Juno and the Peacock" on 50-51. This is not a happy Juno! The two rats have a rat-sized car at their disposal in TMCM on 62-63. The flouncy milkmaid on 74 must not be missed! Her face and expression change considerably after the accident on 77. There is a life of La Fontaine on 96 and a T of C on 97. The front cover presents a nice synthesis of several fables, with FC most prominent.

2005 El traje nuevo del emperador.  Basado en el cuento de Hans Christian Andersen.  Ilustrado por Sergio Kern.  Hardbound.  Madrid: Cuentos Infantiles:  Diario El Pais.  $6 from West Coast, July, '15.

Previously copyrighted by Editorial Sol in 2004.  This is an almost square book of just less than 8".  This emperor has long blond hair and a thin black mustache.  He graces the title page wearing blue and pink striped boxer shorts and nothing else.  The two deceivers appear in this emperor's busy town announcing "nuestros trajes son invisibles para todos aquellos que son tontos" (8).  The art is colorful and takes various forms on various pages, spilling back, for example, from 7 to 6.  Is it logical for this emperor to think that if he has a suit of this cloth, he can learn who is a fool?  The emperor's wildest outfit shows up on 17.  One of the best illustrations shows the two weavers holding up the "clothes" for one of the emperor's counselors (19).  A climactic moment comes when the emperor decides to ride his white horse out to the workplace of the weavers outside the city.  The look on his face upon seeing his clothes is excellent (23)!  These weavers drink through the night wearing their medals from the emperor before the glorious showing.  In that grand procession, the thieving weavers can hardly contain their laughter.  A "niño" is the first to say "está desnudo!"  The emperor blushes.  He and his counselors march on as though nothing had happened.  The story is followed by engaging activities.  But did the emperor learn something?  And what did he do to those weavers?

2005 Fables Beneath the Rainbow. Leslie Ann Hayashi. Illustrated by Kathleen Wong Bishop. First printing; Signed by Kathy Bishop. Hardbound. Honolulu: Mutual Publishing, LLC. $6.99 from Goodwill Industries of Southern Arizona, Tucson, Nov., '10.

Hayashi and Bishop did Fables from the Garden and Fables from the Sea. Here is a third collaborative work. It features ten original fables with an ecological bent. The first three give a sense of them. The first fable has the last silversword plant atop a dormant volcano cry out "Please spare me!" to the goat kid about to consume it. The kid agrees, and within a few months, new silverswords sprout all around and beautify the landscape. The second fable follows a young bat who does not do his homework -- about bats eating flies. The moral: "Failing to study is studying to fail." In the third fable, a young beetle learns at a beetle-picnic not to eat too much: "Our stomachs are like pillows; they should be full, not stuffed" (11). The art is exuberant, gloriously colorful. Art and text are worked together well to fill the page. There are ecologically sensitive notes on 28-31, including "Things You Can Do to Help Hawai'i's Environment" and presentations of the Hawaian fauna and flora appearing in the fables. On 32 there is material on the author and the artist, including a photograph of the two.

2005 Fables de La Fontaine. Illustrations: Eugène Lambert. Présentation: Jean Gall. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Paris: Editions Molière. €20 from the bouquinistes, Paris, June, ‘07.

This book and its original make for fascinating comparisons. This is a sturdy hardcover book of some 253 pages with attractive red-ink renditions of Lambert's TMCM and FG on its front and back covers, with the same illustrations repeated on the dust-jacket. We seem to have here the full complement of illustrations that appeared in Lambert's original 1870 edition. The approach to his engravings here is different, however, in several ways. First, they are done in red ink rather than black. Secondly, they cover the full page, with absolutely no margin on any side. Lambert's original illustrations always had room around them. Thirdly, the illustrations here are cropped. Often the cropping leaves out part or all of what may give the most wit to Lambert's work, that is, the extra symbol added in space near the top of an engraving. These symbols are missing from two of the first three illustrations. FC (17) is missing the censor blowing smoke, and OF (19) the exploded frog up in the air with a ribbon reading "vanitas" swirling around him. I am glad to see that the symbol is still there for DW (21): a bird escaping his cage. I had written of Lambert's illustrations that most seem simple, direct, dull, and predictable. There is both a T of C and an AI at the back. Jean Gall's introduction helps to situate Lambert historically.

2005 Fables of the East: Selected Tales 1662-1785.  Ros Ballaster.  First printing.  Paperbound.  NY: Oxford.  $6 from Powell's, Chicago, June, '15.

This is an impressive collection of varied texts in four groupings: "The Framed Sequence"; "The Pseudo-Oriental Tale"; "Travels and History"; and "Letter Fictions."  There are three or four selections in each grouping.  One of the selections in the first grouping is "The Fable of the Mouse, that was Changed into a Little Girl" from "The Fables of Pilpay," translated by Joseph Harris (1699).  A long introduction lays out the "complicated genealogy of the fables associated with Pilpay/Bidpai."  In this engaging version of the tale, a mouse falls at the feet of a Gentleman, dropped from the bill of a raven.  The man prays, and the gods transform her into a pretty little girl.  When she gets to marriageable age, he asks her whom she wants to marry.  "A Husband so strong, that he should never be vanquish'd" (47).  The gentleman then goes through the series Sun, Cloud, Wind, Mountain, Rat.  The Gentleman thinks that she will refuse the Rat, but she is eager to marry him.  So he asks the gods to transform her back into a mouse, and they do.  I believe that that story is the only fable in the book.

2005 Faithful Fables. Heidi Nicolini. Illustrated by Jesse Morales. First edition. Hardbound. Houston, TX: Kingsley Literary Services, Ltd. $10 from Adventures Underground, Richland, WA, through abe, July, '12.

Squigley, the squirrel with no tail, is the only one able to remove a seed from between the giraffe's teeth in the zoo. "Bright Light, Round Moon" is a touching story of two bugs who find each other. One of them has been searching for light and wanting to go to the moon. The other is enraptured with the moon's smile. "The Tumbleweed" is a story of embracing life's seasons. "Special Seeds" is about milkweed seeds. It seems these "weeds" produce sick-making nectar that beautiful butterflies suck up so that birds will get sick if they eat the butterflies. The "weeds" turn out to bring the garden a whole new array of beautiful guests!

2005 Famous Jataka Tales (Cover and Spine: Famous Stories of Jataka Tales).  Illustrated by Art Studio.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  New Delhi: Rainbow Books.  150 Rupees from Children Book Centre, Kolkata, Dec., '13.  

Twenty-eight tales on 96 pages after an opening T of C.  Each story gets several colored pictures.  "The Selfish Bird" (13) tells of a bird who found grain scattered on a freeway and advised her flock not to come help harvest it because of the dangers.  She really wanted all of it for herself, and she was trampled to death by a cart.  Selfishness seems the biggest target of Jatakas.  Ingratitude might come in in second place.  "The Hunter and the Three Friends" (35) comes in from the Panchatantra cycle, and the story soon includes a mouse with the deer, tortoise, and woodpecker to fill out the escape. "The Greedy Woman" (56) tells of the Brahmin's widow who is gifted by the Brahmin, returned as a golden goose, with a valuable feather.  She eventually rips all the feathers from the goose, but they turn to ordinary feathers, and he departs from such a greedy woman.  The title-page picture is of the supposedly saintly jackal who eats a rat every day (60).  The title-character in "The Kind Hearted Deer" saves the king who was hunting him; invited to live at the palace, he asks instead that the king stop hunting animals (89).  A collection of colorful cartoon animals graces the front cover.  The dust-jackets repeat the covers.

2005 Florian: Fables. Jean-Noël Pascal. Paperbound. Ferney-Voltaire, France: Centre international d'étude du XVIIIe siècle. €16.21 f

This is a helpful little book of 322 pages. It has Vimar's "Magic Lantern" on its covers. The book may be most helpful for its account of each fable's sources and of other versions, given in italics after Florian's text. There is a good deal of other helpful material: a brief biographical sketch, a comparison of Pascal's and Jauffret's numbering of the fables, and a bibliography. At the start of each of the five books there is an illustration of the first fable in the book. These are taken from the 1792 first edition by Didot. "De la Fable" on 83 belongs to Florian himself. After the five books and unedited fables, one finds an AI, a list of sources cited, and a T of C. There are copious footnotes, numbered consecutively in each book.

2005 Frederick (Spanish). Leo Lionni; translation by Teresa Mlawer. Apparently second printing. Paperbound. Lyndhurst, NJ: Dragonfly: Lectorum Publications, Inc. $6.99 from Powell's on Hawthorne, Portland, OR, July, '11.

Here is a large-format Spanish version of Lionni's 1967 classic. This is a wonderful tale of the poet mouse. In the dreary winter he gives the mouse community words and colors. They need it and love it--and him! Lovely stuff!

2005 Ho Pseutes Boskos. Nestoras Chounos. Illustrations by Chrestos Varlamos. Paperbound. Athens: Aisopou Mythoi 8: Ankyra. $2.67 from Greece-Mania, Athens, through eBay, June, '05.

Here is one of a series of 16 slick oversized 8-page pamphlets, of which I have three. The most dramatic picture in this version is the two-page spread just before the end: two black wolves with red eyes and sharp teeth attack the flock while the shepherd boy shouts in vain for help to fellow shepherds whose backs are turned to him. 

2005 I.A. Krylov: Basni. Illustrations by Irina Petelina. Hardbound. Moskow: Eksmo. $17.98 from Rubux Books through eBay, June, '05.

This is a very pleasant contemporary rendition of Krylov. The artistic style combines contemporary sensibility with traditional Russian approaches. Thus the fox addressing the crow with cheese in its beak -- and a babuschka on its head -- has an umbrella to protect her from the sun and wears a flowing robe over an underskirt (4). Surprisingly, the same scene is slightly differently rendered on the book's front cover. As the T of C on 94 makes clear, there are here thirty-eight fables on 93 pages. Typical of this book's approach to the fables is "The Cat and the Cook" on 36 and again on 38. This cat is having a good time! The fox pondering the grapes on 47 is a refined lady with a bonnet and -- again -- a parasol. One is reminded in a good fable book like this book that the same fables tend to recur in various editions of the same fabulist. And so it is here. These are fun to look at! 

2005 I.A. Krilov: Basni (Fables). Ivan Krylov. Illustrations by Fedorovskaya. Paperbound. Minsk: Planeta Detstva. $19.98 from Raigo Kirss, Estonia, through eBay, July, '10.

This is a standard, no-frills Krylov paperback edition. Its one added feature, I believe, lies in the line-drawings at the beginning of each book. I can recognize most: "Monkey Spectacles"; GA: "The Elephant and the Pug"; "Quartet"; "John's Soup"; FG; "The Pig Rooting at the Base of a Tree"; and "The Fox and the Cat." 

2005 Jataka Tales.  Ed. Francis & Thomas.  Fifteenth enlarged edition.  Paperbound.  Mumbai: Jaico Publishing House.  $6.95 from Berkeley, August, '13.  

Here is a hefty paperback of some 387 pages presenting 114 of the 547 Jataka tales.  The book was first published by Jaico in 1957.  I have read the first five tales.  The stories are as charming as ever.  The typos here are disturbing, like "brining" for "bringing" on the introduction page and "a very title while" for "a very little while" on 2.  Simple illustrations of elephants decorate both front and back covers.

2005 Jean de La Fontaine: Basni (Russian). Various illustrators. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Moscow: Bely Gorod. $38.95 from Interworld Media, Staten Island, NY, through eBay, Oct., '11.

At 672 pages, this is one of the largest books in the collection. The seller estimates that there are some 1000 illustrations, all black-and-white, in the book. The book is unusually well printed for a publication emanating from Russia. The front and back covers -- as opposed to the black-and-orange dust-jacket -- is a wild collage of colored illustrations, many of them familiar but some new. Lorioux, Grandville, Oudry, Vimar, Doré, and Lambert are well represented. Not all illustrations are presented in their original form. Many seem copied from derivative sources, especially Alfred Mâme's publishing house. Most of Grandville's illustrations, for example, are cited as published by Mâme in 1887; they were published by Fournier Ainé in 1838. All of Oudry's illustrations are presented between busy columns that I do not remember seeing before: why complicate his fine designs? Vimar (about 1910) is cited as appearing in a Mâme publication of 1987. My impression is that the simplest line-drawings and silhouettes come off the page best in this book. Heighway's occasional appearances are thus strong. The printing job is poorest on the full-page reproductions of Doré, e.g., "The Wolves and the Dogs" on 158; much better is Doré's "The Monkey and the Dolphin" on 186. My two strongest experiences of the book are that this is a major undertaking, and that one would have hoped for more that would be new, like the illustrations from Belgrad 269 and at several other places. Late in the work one finds a number of title-pages and covers of prominent editions of La Fontaine's fables. At the end one finds a life of La Fontaine, comments, an index, a bibliography, and a T of C. For the student of fable editions, the bibliography (666) is disappointing. One finds titles, dates, and sometimes publishers, without indication of illustrators or editors.

2005 Kalilah and Dimnah. Thomas Ballantine Irving. Paperbound. Newark, Delaware: Juan de la Cuesta Hispanic Monographs: Juan de la Cuesta. $6.95 from Powell's, Portland, August, '08.

The hardbound version of this book was done by the same publisher in 1980. Here now is the paperback version done in 2005. The pictorial covers present two images from the Topkapi Museum: "Kalila visits the captive Dimna" and (back) "Lion attacking a Bull." As I wrote then, this is a helpful and careful edition. The introduction (xi) points out that Calila e Digna in 1591 was the first extensive piece of prose literature in Spanish. This translation from the Arabic and Spanish seems to work carefully with the sources. The introduction also notes that this version gives the Panchatantra's five books in I and III-VI. II on Dimnah's trial and VII-XV are added stories. The T of C here (v-viii) lists all the fables and notes those that are fables within fables. There are notes at the end and an extensive bibliography. The work could have used a more careful proofreader. It appears that the proofreading errors persist. Note "shoemanker" on 14.

2005 La Cicala et la Formica da Esopo. Raccontata da Roberto Piumini. Illustrata da Nicoletta Costa. Hardbound. San Dorligo della Valle, Trieste: C'era una fiaba....: Edizioni EL. €8.50 from La Feltrinelli Bookstore, Florence, August, '06.

Apparently this "C'era una fiaba...." collection is only now appearing. It seems that seven books have been published to date. There may be two more fables in the three books that will complete the series of ten--TH and "La Favola del Mercante"--but they are not yet listed on the publisher's website for this series. This is a hardbound book 8½" square. After the title-page, there are eleven pairs of pages, with text on the left and a full-page illustration on the right. The illustrations are simple and colorful. They seem almost to be made out of colorforms, near geometric forms cleverly configured to create animal shapes, flowers, and the sun. The ant is busy in summer hauling a cart filled with a tied-up bag of grain. The book's most dramatic image comes near its center, as the leaf on which the cicada has been sitting has turned gold. In this version, the ant lets the grasshopper into the richly filled hill bunker. The request for food comes inside this cave. When the cicada asks for two or three grains, an ant answers that two or three ants had to work two or three days to carry those two or three grains to the cave. As the cicada is walking to the door to leave, he says to himself that, if he makes it to the next summer, he will sing a little and he will work a little. That is the story's good last line. This is a pleasant little book. It is also one of the few Italian fable books I could find on this trip.

2005 La Fontaine et Le Gaucher. Fables by Jean de La Fontaine. Illustrations by Eric Carrier, Michel Gaudelette, René Hausman, Frédérik Salsedo, and Arthur Suydam. Paperbound. Paris: Nocturne. £2.45 from ianscdstore, Liverpool, through eBay, August, '11.

This is an unusual find. The unusual part starts with the fact that shipping cost more than the item itself. The item is a combination of a book and a compact disc by Pierrejean Gaucher. Its title contains a wordplay and perhaps even more wordplay than I can catch. "Le Gaucher" means "the lefty." The word shows up here because Pierrejean Gaucher did the composition and arrangements of the music and the composition of the pamphlet. The 28-page pamphlet is itself highly unusual. It is 5½" x almost 10". It offers excellent contemporary graphic-novel illustrations for six of the fables presented on the compact disc. Illustrated are OF, TH, FC, TMCM, and CW with one final illustration for GA. There is also a curious cover picture of TH as gunslingers that makes me think there is even more wordplay here. Fourteen fables are in French, besides one Italian version of OF and Thornbury's English version of GA. OF features a particularly grand "Ka-Blouie!" In TH, the rabbit starts the race, falls in love, gets married, raises a huge family, and then notices on TV that the tortoise is nearing the finish line! This presentation has good cartoon work and good tracking of La Fontaine's approach to this fable. In FC, the crow is perched atop a seven-storey apartment building, and the fox drives by in a racy car. TMCM has the liveliest colored cartoon work! The wildest illustration work may be on CW. It features some fascinating hybrid faces and an offputting picture of a nude woman eating a mouse! The non-illustrated fables have texts offered at the back of the book. I will keep the disc in the cardboard case that forms the covers for the book.

2005 La Fontaine: Fables Choisies. Illustrées par M.B. de Monvel. Hardbound. Paris: Trésor du Patrimoine. €5 from Librairie de l'Avenue, Saint-Ouen, July, '12.

Here is an excellent reproduction of a book first produced by Plon, Nourrit & Cie in 1888. It has a beautiful green cloth cover with a pasted-on procession of La Fontaine leading animals and even two pots. Inside there are the twenty-six fables on 48 pages that one finds in the original. As I mentioned on the earliest printings of this book, the illustrations' colors are delightful. The best of them may be FM (26) and WC (47). Boutet de Monvel is rightly highly praised by Arbuthnot and Sutherland. The pictorial T of C at the beginning is nicely done.

2005 La lechera: The Milkmaid.  Translation by Esther Sarfatti; Adaptation by Luz Orihuela.  Illustrations by Mabel Piérola.  Paperbound.  NY: Scholastic, Inc.  $2.95 from Powell's, Portland, OR, July, '11. 

This is a 24-page pamphlet 8" square.  Its left-hand pages present each a sentence in Spanish and English.  The right-hand pages present lively full-page colored illustrations.  Piérola has fun with the story from the beginning.  The milkmaid had to scold the cats, for example, who were drinking from her pails of milk before she could take the milk to the city to sell it.  When the milkmaid's daydreams got to the calf, she imagined it jumping up and down. "She started to jump up and down, too!" (16).  She jumped high, finally, and tripped.  Why, by the way, was she wearing shoes that have pegs on their soles?  "All she had left were bruises on her knees and tears in her eyes" (22).  Apparently first published in Spanish in 2004.  This bilingual edition then came out in the following year.

2005 Las Más Bellas Fábulas que te contarán muchas veces. Adaptación de Alejandra Erbiti. Ilustraciones: Oscar Arcuri & Gustavo Mazzali. Hardbound. Buenos Aires/Montevideo: Latinbooks International SA. $14.48 from Better World Books, April, '10.

This large-format (over 9½" x 13½") book presents four fables and, at the book's end, a page of games ("acti-juegos") for each. The fables are big, colorful, active. "El Pícaro Asno" tells of the roguish ass who kicks the wolf in the face. This telling makes the wolf vain about the ability of his sharp teeth to do fine work on the nail that bothers the ass. And the nail of new shoes does bother this ass; his braying about it brought the wolf to him in the first place. "El lLobo y la Cigüena" seems to be pictured and recounted in traditional fashion. "El León y la Rata" includes a surprising first phase in which the mouse travels a long way, apparently by both train and ship. "Una Mona Perezosa" is new to me. It tells of a lazy monkey who, having eaten nothing but bananas, does not understand that one breaks open nuts and coconuts and then enjoys the liquid and food inside. The games afterward are cleverly done, especially the two different forms of the game of finding the differences in detail between two similar pictures. I wrote to the website SpanishDict to get help on understanding this title and have received a flurry of helpful answers. The best translation seems to be "The most beautiful fables which they will tell you many times."

2005 Le Corbeau et le Renard.  Text après Jean de La Fontaine.  Illustrations de Loïc Dauvillier & Matthieu Maudet.  Premier edition.  Hardbound.  Paris: Carabas Jeunesse.  €3.20 from Gibert Joseph, Paris, August, '14.  

Here is a small (6¾" x 6¾") "bande dessinée."  The title-page cleverly inserts a child between the fox and the crow, who has a redolent cheese clutched under his arm.  One might wonder about the eye-glasses on this crow.  The story opens with the boy playing a computer game in which he, as a mouse, hammers an elephant.  Mom calls him to put on clothes and go to a theater.  There she gives him a kiss.  His reaction is that he, as the mouse in the computer game, would like to hammer his mother.  The theater's show is a marionette performance of FC.  Monsieur Renard arrives in a truck marked "Renard Beau Parleur." The crow at first can hardly see the fox.  He has perhaps more than one physical deficiency.  Might this shortcoming contribute to his misassessment of his own beauty?  He puts on his glasses and sees the fox clearly.  The crow has to look up "ramage" to see that it means "chant des oiseaux dans les arbres."  He returns, combs his hair, and sings.  His song, when he sings, is "bibapeloula."  The fox throws the cheese into his truck, already crowded with other cheeses.  At the end of the performance, the boy kisses his mother and dreams of hammering the fox.  Good work!

2005 Le courbeau et le renard.  Réécrit, imaginé et illustré par Paul Beaupère; textes du documentaire et des jeux: Valérie Videau.  Paperbound.  Paris: Les Fables de la Fontaine:  Nathan.  $32 from Amazon.com, June, '13.  

This is one of six books in a series.  I am sorry to have missed the series.  Now only two of them seem available at reasonable prices, and here is the second of those two.  The pamphlet offers delightful cartoons, starting with the front-cover picture of the crow sitting on a construction beam with a hard hat and grasping his piece of cheese.  Here that piece of cheese is a good contemporary sandwich.  As this presentation develops, we find Romeo the crow suspended from the Eiffel Tower and Arsène the fox climbing its girders.  Soon it seems that this venue is undergoing a movie shoot.  The fox gets into the workers' suspended box with the crow and continues his pitch.  Soon the crow sings.  He lets go of the sandwich, and the whole crew is after it!  The fox gets it and quickly lowers the box.  As always, the crow is left alone and deprived in the end.  Good f

2005 Le Corbeau et le Renard: Une fable de Jean de La Fontaine. Illustrée par Isabelle Carrier. Hardbound. Mont-près-Chambord: Bilboquet-Valbert. €6 from Gibert Joseph, Paris, July, '09.

Here is a simple square hardbound book 8½" on a side and containing twenty pages. It is in the same series as Le Loup et le Chien, published in 2008. The endpapers feature a collage of feathers and leaves. The pictures are actually photographs of cut-paper collages with short matching statements. Early statements are, e.g., "Wow, crow! How beautiful you are! You must have a very lovely voice!" and "Crrroooaaaa." This fable allows itself to be reduced to wonderfully simple statements, like "Oh?!" and "Aaah!" The last two normal pages give the full text of La Fontaine's fable. Well done! The back cover is correct: "Une fable de La Fontaine mise en scène avec humour."

2005 Le loup et l'agneau. Réécrit, imaginé et illustré par Paul Beaupère; textes du documentaire et des jeux: Valérie Videau. Paperbound. Paris: Les Fables de la Fontaine: Nathan. $10.90 from Marie Gervais, St.-Urbain-Premier, Quebec, Canada, through eBay, Sept., '12.

This is one of six books in a series. I am sorry to have missed the series. Now only a couple of volumes are available, and they are very expensive! The pamphlet offers delightful cartoons, starting with the front-cover picture of a lamb slinking away with food while a wolf looks on with knife and fork in his paws. First the fable is told in its entirety, with helpful vocabulary at the page bottom. Then we start putting the story into a context for today by taking a few lines at a time and giving these lines a two-page spread. The context is a school cafeteria, where Richie the Wolf does what he pleases without objection from others. Baptiste has finished his lunch with friends. Richie wants Baptiste's dessert. "You're sitting in my seat and eating my cake!" Baptiste gives him his place. "You're not getting out that easily! You mocked me yesterday!" Baptiste jumps on a rolling cart. "I wasn't even here yesterday!" Richie jumps on a cart and pursues Baptiste. The course terminates at a tree. There Baptiste is tied up and has to watch Richie eat his dessert. 

2005 Le più belle favole di La Fontaine.  Tradizione: Renato Caporali.  Illustrazioni: Cinzia Ghigliano.  Nuova Edizione, first printing.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  Florence: Pagine d'Oro:  Giunti Junior.  See 1974/2005.

2005 Leonid Ghlibov: Bayke. Edited by I.M. Andrusiyak. Illustrations by Yuliya Kucherovska. Hardbound. Kiev: Hresmomamiya Shkolyara: Vugavnichmvo Shkola. $16.77 from Victor Romanchenko, Rubux Ukrainian Books, Jan., '05. 

From what I can gather, there are fables on 12-88. They are without illustration except for the two birds on the sectional title-page introducing the section (11). There is a T of C at the back starting on 124. There are no internal illustrations after the title-page's wolf and lamb. The pictorial cover shows a cat and a wolf side by side; two ducks fly overhead. Other eBay advertisers have spoken of Ghlibov as the greatest Ukrainian fabulist. I wish I could say more!

2005 Les plus belles Fables de La Fontaine et autres auteurs célèbres.  Hardbound.  Quebec, Canada: Goélette Jeunesse:  Les Éditions Goélette Inc.  $12.90 from Marie Gervais, St.-Urbain-Premier, Quebec, Canada, through eBay, June, '14.  

Here are fifty-five fables told in from one to six pages each, with colorful full-page illustrations around their texts on unnumbered pages.  Those texts are prose presentations of the fables in sense-lines.  The overfed hen in the first fable gets sick from overeating and thus lays no eggs.  Unable to break a captured turtle on the ground, a fox gives in to the turtle's suggestion that he soften him up in water.  Iriarte's "Flautist Ass" is well done in poetry.  Why try to scrub a pig?  The artist presents "The Dog and the Crocodile" cleverly by taking a point of view at exactly the water level.  GA ends surprisingly, in fact in a way I have never seen before.  The grasshopper has just said "But if you heard my music, I at least entertained you."  The ant answers "What?!  I suffered more from your music this summer than I did from the hard work that lets me eat now!"  "The Stag at the Pool" has a happy ending as the stag breaks off a branch of the tree holding him back.  The illustration follows this kindly way of ending the story.  The moral of MM turns against itself.  "The fable seems to say that it is not good to dream while we are awake.  But we need a little imagination in life!"  Several morals here are similar in recommending particular fables to particular types of people but not stating a particular lesson.

2005 Mice, Morals, & Monkey Business: Lively Lessons From Aesop's Fables. Christopher Wormell. First printing. Hardbound. Philadelphia and London: Running Press. $18.95 from powell's.com, Sept., '05.

This is a bold, impressive book with very strong and simple wood engravings. Fables are not told. Instead, each fable gets a two-page spread. On one page is a moral and a title, e.g.: "Necessity is the mother of invention. The Crow and the Pitcher." Facing it is a strong, simple illustration, here of a crow ready to drop a pebble into a pitcher. After about twenty-two such spreads, the stories are told, two to a page, with a much smaller rendition of the single illustration for that fable. Particularly strong among the illustrations are DS; WSC; "The Flies and the Honey Pot"; "The Dolphins, the Whales, and the Sprat"; and FG. This is a beautiful book!

2005 Mice, Morals, & Monkey Business: Lively Lessons From Aesop's Fables.  Christopher Wormell.  First printing.  Hardbound.  Philadelphia and London: Running Press.  $10 from Feldman's Books, Menlo Park, CA, July, '15.

This book replicates another in the collection except for two changes.  First, the printing of the front cover's picture is different.  The background now is variegated mixing cream and gray.  The same colors were there in the other copy, but have a clear border and are not mixed.  This copy also removes  the large advertising seal on the back cover of the book, complete with a Wormell illustration.  As I wrote on the first copy, this is a bold, impressive book with very strong and simple wood engravings.  Fables are not told.  Instead, each fable gets a two-page spread.  On one page is a moral and a title, e.g.: "Necessity is the mother of invention.  The Crow and the Pitcher."  Facing it is a strong, simple illustration, here of a crow ready to drop a pebble into a pitcher.  After about twenty-two such spreads, the stories are told, two to a page, with a much smaller rendition of the single illustration for that fable.  Particularly strong among the illustrations are DS; WSC; "The Flies and the Honey Pot"; "The Dolphins, the Whales, and the Sprat"; and FG.  This is a beautiful book!

2005 Mirovar Kollektziya Basen: World Collection of Fables. Edited by M. Mitichkina. Hardbound. Moscow: Mir Knigi Publishing. $15 from Victor Romanchenko, Rubux Ukrainian Books, Ukraine, Jan., '06.

The cover goes on: "A Cat, a Ferret and a Rabbit" and 21 Other Fables." The forty-eight pages of this children's book present fables of La Fontaine in translations of I.A.Krylov and other famous Russian writers: I.Dmitriev, O.Chumina, N.Yur'ina, I.Khemnitzer, A.Izmailov, V.Zhukov, and P.Porfirov. The book includes a CD for listening to fables from this book performed by Russian actors Vladimir Konkin and Irina Malikova. Copyright by Editions Auzou in France. There is a T of C on 4. One gets a good idea of the quality of art in this book on 16-17, which offer two scenes from "The Oyster and the Litigants." Often the art is somewhat understated and in the background. There are twenty-two fables here. Both the cover and the title-page give special attention to "A Cat, a Ferret and a Rabbit" (32); it is also the most prominent element of the front cover's illustration. Apparently originally copyrighted by Editions Auzou in France.

2005 Monira's Fables. Written by Monira Sohaili. Illustrated by Andre Van Zijl. Paperbound. Bookman Publishing and Marketing. $3.98 from Better World Books, Feb., '10.

I had already found and catalogued this book in its earlier form as published by 1stbooks in 2001. I chanced across the book again in this more recent form, published by in 2005 by Bookman Publishing and Marketing. To my surprise, there is no reference to the earlier publisher. As I wrote there, this book describes itself in its last pages and again on the back cover as "sensitive and nurturing stories for children four to twelve years old" (101). For those studying fables, I think it presents a good sample case of fables that push toward compassion and encouragement rather than enlightenment about harsh realities. Thus Webby the spider laughs at Silky the silkworm because she is a "slave to other people" (5). Silky converts Webby to thinking about others and even rejoicing over their good. Anna has to leave behind her pet ducks and fishes because of war raging around her parents' home. During the whole time of their hiding in the forest, she wonders how they are. The three return to find their home destroyed, but the ducks have three ducklings, and there are now hundreds of fishes (8)! Sunflower is sad because bee, butterfly, and others do not visit her the way they do other flowers for their nectar. Bee, butterfly, and earthworm console sunflower by saying that they enjoy her beauty; everything has its own gift in the garden of love (13).

2005 Monsieur de La Fontaine le lièvre ne vous dit pas merci. Texte: Agnès Bardon. Illustration: Cassandre Montoriol. Hardbound. Paris: Éditions Thierry Magnier. €8.40 from Gibert Jeune, Paris, July, '09.

This book is fun. It works off of La Fontaine's TH, reprinted on the back endpaper. The hare is depressed. He feels as though everyone is laughing at him. He despises La Fontaine; a clever illustration on 20 shows him shooting arrows at a picture of La Fontaine. The tortoise has a particular way of getting to the hare. The hare's one friend during this time has been the little hedgehog Manioc. It turns out that Manioc has been kidnapped by the wolf. The animals meet to discuss how they can liberate him from the wolf's cage. Many demur, but the hare steps forward and volunteers. He will distract the wolf into chasing him, and the mole with the senior hedgehog can liberate Manioc. The wolf sees through the hare's ploy and dismisses him. The hare gets to him when he claims that he will tell the animals that the wolf is afraid that he is not as fast as a turtle! The chase is on, and Manioc is liberated. In the book's last phase, the hare is doing interviews as a hero and seems no longer to have time for his friends -- until on TV itself he apologizes to his friends and says that, though he means to write a new set of fables, they will wait until he has some good time with his old friends. Clever text with delightful illustrations.

2005 Mythoi tou Aisopou #5. Paperbound. Athens, Greece: Mythoi tou Aisopou: Ekdoseis Agkura. Gift of Kathryn Thomas, March, '06.

Here is a simple large-format pamphlet of eight pages presenting three fables. The first is unusual. It pits mice against cats; sometimes the enemy in this fable is weasels. The key to the fable is usually the cumbersomeness of the mice-leaders' horned helmets, but of many mice pictured on 2-3, I can see only two with helmets, and all the mice seem to be seized by the cats. The mice's tails are very much like the spears that they hold. The second fable is AD. The ant is dripping or sweating or both. The third fable presents texts on panels hanging from trees. This story of the lion, rooster, and ass has, like the first fable, three pages. Surprisingly, the climactic third page shows no action, like the confronting or killing of the ass. I may be missing something, but it seems to have only the story-telling panel. Here is an opportunity for dramatization missed! There are seven other pamphlets in this series, as the back cover indicates. It is unusual to find utterly blank inside covers like these.

2005 Mythoi tou Aisopou, Tomos 2os. Christos Barlamos. Hardbound. Ekdoseis Agyra. $9.99 from Oscar's Book Nook, Denton, TX, through eBay, Jan., '13.

This attractive large-format book offers four fables, each receiving about eight pages and a longish prose text. FWT presents a lively female fox who dresses up as a fashion statement after she has lost her tail. Her tight pants and short tail are noticed by even the birds and, of course, the skirt-wearing grandma fox with granny glasses. The second fable is apparently Perry 233, "The Swan and his Owner." "They say that swans sing when about to die. Someone bought a swan because he had heard that it was a very melodious bird. Then once, when he had guests for dinner, he urged the swan to sing for the company, but the swan remained silent. Later on, when the swan sensed that he was about to die, he sang a dirge for himself, and his owner hearing it said 'If you sing only when you are going to die, it was foolish of me to ask you to sing instead of sacrificing you.'" Next up is "The Monkey and the Fox," where the latter reveals the former's ineptitude for kingship by getting him caught in a trap. My prize for the liveliest illustration in a lively book goes to the picture here of the monkey doing her hair (26-27). The climax picture is also excellent: the supposed queen is trapped and befuddled (32). The black wolves on 38 of BW are also excellent. The endpapers offer a clue that FC appears in Volume I, now out of print. An indication on the book's cover, which shows BW, indicates that the book has a matching CD. There is no sign of that CD here.

2005 Never Cry Woof! Retold and Illustrated by Jane Wattenberg. Dust jacket. Hardbound. NY: Scholastic Press. $10.50 from Powell's, Portland, July, '06.

This is a large-format book somewhat in the tradition of William Wegman. The book's title-page is actually about eight pages into the book. Each of the early pages has a single large picture of a dog in a human situation. The starting situations for Hunky-Dory and Bix on the first two pages are the same: they are looking for a job. An ad appears for a dog to guard sheep. "A gazillion dogs applied for the job." Some were hired and some rejected. At that point the title-page intervenes and this story of contrasts gets specific. Bix has the attitude of "Bring 'em on" towards the wolves; Hunky-Dory is cautious and wants to follow the shepherd's rules. Rule #1 is "Never Cry Woooof! unless you really need to." Bix cries "Wooof!" twice and Hunky-Dory and all the other dogs come to his rescue both times, only to be laughed at and humored. The third time proves to be disastrous for Bix; he receives no help, and the threat is real. One finds plenty of rhyme here, rapper's rhythms, and a good deal of punning. My favorite pun comes with the "Lambulance." Hunky-Dory's reflection on Bix' last "woof" is typical: "Twice wasn't nice, but a third is absurd." There are also lots of crazy hats on the dogs. The last page says "See Ewe."

2005 Parabolas: Stories and Fables. Alan Titley. Signed by Alan Titley. Paperbound. Belfast: Lagan Press. €4.89 from Kennys Books, Galway, Ireland, through abe, April, '11.

Here is a book I presume I had not learned of because it is marketed in the UK and perhaps not in the USA. The author presents an engaging sense of the stories he has gathered here, all originally written in Irish and culled from three previous collections. "While some of them follow the well-rutted path of the traditional short story, there are others that are tales, or yarns, or fables, or plots, or just fictions, because a story is a truly raggy thing" (13). I find the first story offering a clue to all the others: "The Storyteller" (17). Here we read of a Jesus-like figure "who told stories on street corners or in the fields or in the back rooms of pubs." He becomes a cult figure but then passes out of fashion as he had passed into fashion. While in fashion, he challenges people to invite to their parties "the poor, the hoboes, the junkies, the scumbags on the streets, goddam filthy immigrants.." "Do it this way 'cause they can never invite you back." Later his stories engender stories, commentaries, exegeses, and epicycles on their cycles. The stories in this little volume have some of the shock value of scripture stories. One that is close to traditional fable form has the maggot closing a debate with the far-flying bird by saying that he will have seen the ground "and I will have left my mark upon it" (30). One subset that catches my attention includes these titles: "A Yarn of Fifty Words Only" (57); "Story in One Hundred Words" (119); and "Tale in Twenty-Five Words" (130). A fine anticlerical piece is "The Bishop Who Stuck His Finger in the Dyke" (58). For me, "As It is in Heaven" (69) is not only surprising but also inappropriate. "Falling Out of Love" (115) is no fable, but it gets the experience just right. What a refreshing little book! 

2005 Pop-Up Aesop. Written by John Harris. Illustrated by Calef Brown. Hardbound. Los Angeles: Getty Publications. $19.95 from Barnes and Noble, Oct., '05. 

"Not the same old Aesop" the back cover proclaims, and it is right. This is a lively book. Actually it is not just a pop-up. There are also levers to manipulate and gates to open. Besides, there is a lift-out moral for every fable. The most dramatic pop-up presents the fox's jaws eating the crab that strayed onto the shore. Harris uses good story-telling in the same story. The crab uses a contemporary idiom to express that he is tired of living in the ocean "Been there, done that." As he is attempting to scamper back to the water, Harris has him first look up to the fox and then start to speak. In mid-sentence Harris writes "End of story. End of crab." Also very strong is the pop-up of the dancing camel. Harris is decidedly colloquial. Thus the moral for "The Starry-Eyed Astronomer" is "Pay attention to the small stuff, even while you're thinking about the big stuff." The last two pages present a fascinating challenge. At the left is Aesop, urging the reader to make his or her own fable by spinning the dial on the facing page and using the two animals that the dial points to on two spins. Then the reader is to pull down Aesop's beard and find a series of morals, one of which might fit the two animal characters already chosen. Part of the fun is that lowering the beard occasions Aesop's eyes to move over to the animals on the facing page--just as the child's eyes move in the story about feeding him to the wolf. This is an ingenious and well-constructed book!

2005 Salut, Monsieur de La Fontaine: Fables nouvelles.  Pierre Gamarra.  Illustrations de Frédéric Devienne.  Hardbound.  La Corneuve, France: Éditions Art - Le Temps des Cerises.  €6.50 from Gibert Joseph, August, '14.  

Here are fables a la Fontaine and built from La Fontaine.  The standard is two facing pages per fable, each fable with at least one colored illustration.  I have tried the first few.  Most accessible to me is "Le Sanglier, l'Homme et la Montre" (10): a boar finds a gold watch and rejects it because he cannot eat it.  A poor man finds the same gold watch and sees it as his meal ticket for a long time to come.  "Each regards in his own way what each finds on the earth."  A rooster proclaims the visible virtues of a bottle of wine that he is looking at.  "I love this gold dust that renders its material so beautiful!"  His discourse is in vain, as he learns by becoming a coq au vin (17).  Further fables have titles like "Picasseau et Picasso" (42) and "Le Cigare et la Fourmi" (60).  Good fun!  The colored illustrations have their own rather eccentric style, not to my liking.

2005 Selected Stories from Panchatantra.  Retold by Rashmi Jaiswal.  Illustrated by P.P. Kasbekar.  Paperbound.  Mumbai: Alka Publications.  120 Rupees from Children Book Centre, Kolkata, Dec., '13. 

It is curious that the same publisher put out two Panchatantra books by the same author but different illustrators within about four years of each other.  Then again, there is yet another Panchatantra book within this series pictured on the back cover of this book!  This slightly smaller-format (7" x 9¼") paperback is like Alka's "Panchatantra Stories," for which I guessed a date of 2001. It offers 31 numbered fables on 120 pages.  There is a T of C on 3-4.  This collection features standard Panchatantra stories.  New to me is a story prominently pictured on the book's cover: "Greed and the Strange Wheel" (16) has four friends searching for wealth.  The last of them, too greedy to want to share the others' wealth, encounters a man who like him had been searching for diamonds.  This man has a wheel revolving around his bloody head.  Finding this new searcher at last relieves him of his burden, and now the new victim must wait for another greedy searcher to come.  Again here, GGE appears as a Panchatantra story (23), as does MSA (39), again with a washerman as protagonist.  On 73, a weaver with a wish to be granted is prevailed upon by his wife to ask for two more hands; the villagers think he is some evil spirit and beat him to death.  The second-to-last story involves an iron bar that is allegedly eaten by mice (111).  The cover proclaims "Illustrated in Colour," and there are one or two larger-than-half-page colored illustrations for each of the stories.

2005 Stories of Mexico's Independence Days and Other Bilingual Children's Fables. Edited by Eliseo "Cheo" Torres and Timothy L. Sawyer, Jr.. Illustrations by Herman Ramirez. First printing. Paperbound. Albuquerque, NM: University of New Mexico Press. $7.48 from Better World Books, April, '11.

There are six bilingual stories here. None is really a fable. The first two stories are colorful fictional stories dealing with "Cinco de Mayo" and Mexico's Independence Day, September 16th. Each takes a small story as a window on the important events represented by the day in question. A small boy happens upon rapidly advancing enemy French troops and quickly reports to Mexican troops, so that they can seize an advantage. A small dog takes on a large wolf and acquits himself well on the very anniversary of Mexican Independence. There are four other edifying stories involving animals. The first is a good example: "Sweetie, the Lion that Thought He Was a Sheep" (23). Sweetie, confronted with a choice between living like a lion or living like a lamb, chooses the latter. The lions who had presented him the ultimatum are caught in a flash flood on the way home, and Sweetie saves them. As a result, they no longer look down on him. 

2005 The Aesop for Children.  With Pictures by Milo Winter.  Hardbound.  NY: Barnes & Noble Books.  $6.99 from Half-Price, Omaha, August, '15.

Barnes and Noble had an earlier edition, listed under 1919/1983.  They have made only slight alterations in this 2005 edition.  This edition adds on the verso of the title page a Barnes & Noble address in New York.  The book is printed now not in Hong Kong but in China.  As I wrote there, this is an attractive green-covered book.  Its pages are slightly reduced in size from those of the classic Rand McNally editions but larger than those in the Clauss black-and-white reprint of 1984.  The color reproduction work here is good.  The T of C still erroneously uses the plural in "The Boy and the Nettles."  This copy has a small corner of the front cover's illustration rubbed off.

2005 The Big Race. Pictures by Milton Glaser. Words by Shirley Glaser. First edition, first printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: A Magic Turnover Book: The Story Never Ends: Hyperion Books for Children. $4.99 from Lees Books, St. Paul, MN, through eBay, Jan., '09.

Yes, this race is big! It starts at the 42nd Street Library in New York and covers some twenty-three other locations, nicely identified and commented upon on the two endpapers. The first stops are France, England, The Netherlands, and Italy. By the end of the book we are in Papua New Guinea. As we turn the book over and start back through it, we go through places like Japan, China, India, Greece, Russia, Canada, and the Galápagos Islands. Notice that the back endpaper is nicely inverted: the world is upside down while the book is upside down! All the way, Tommy Tortoise is sure that he is beating Harry Hare, until of course he arrives back at 42nd Street.. My prize for a creative picture goes to France, where the farmers are so eager to keep their cows contented that they carry them around! Each stop gives a child something to remember from a particular place, like the men fishing on stilts in Papua New Guinea. Would the Dominican Republic want to be known for baseball? This book represents good fun with a creative concept.

2005 The Black Sheep and Other Fables. Augusto Monterroso, translated by R.D.V. Glasgow and Philip Jenkins. First edition. Paperbound. Tadworth, Surrey: Acorn Book Company. $10.44 from Swoop, Maidstone, UK, through abe, April, '05. 

I continue to enjoy Monterroso thoroughly. It may be that I am forgetting something, or it may be that there are several stories new to me in this edition. Among the good new ones I would list "The Rabbit and the Lion" (15), "Faith and Mountains" (23), "Penelope's Cloth, Or Who Is Deceiving Whom (25), and "The Other Six" (45). Old friends still as biting in their satire are "The Monkey Who Wanted to Be a Satirist" (17), "The Owl Who Wanted to Save Humankind" (32), and "David's Sling" (71). For quick fun, try "The Black Sheep" (27), "The Lightning That Struck in the Same Place Twice" (41), "The Frog Who Wanted to Be an Authentic Frog" (60), "The Ass and the Flute" (67), and "The Fable-Writer and His Critics" (84). I think that this is now the best English-language edition of Monterroso.

2005 The Book Without Words: A Fable of Medieval Magic. Avi. First edition, first printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: Hyperion Books for Children. $3.98 from Better World Books, Feb., '10.

"A life unlived is like a book without words." This old proverb introduces this book. A quick reading of the flyleaf convinces me that it may be a captivating book, but that it is a fable in only an extended sense. I will look forward to reading it. In the meantime, the proverb is excellent!

2005 The Medici Aesop. Translated from the Greek by Bernard McTigue. Gherardo di Giovanni. Introduction by Everett Fahy. Afterword by H. George Fletcher. Paperbound. NY: The New York Public Library. See 1488?/2005.

2005 The Rumor: A Jataka Tale from India. Jan Thornhill. Apparent first printing. Paperbound. Toronto: Maple Tree Press. $0.98 from Amazon.com, Jan., '10.

This book was first produced in a hardbound edition in 2002. Both story and illustration are done with care here. The worrywart hare is afraid that the world will break up. The fall of a mango interrupts her nap. When it crashes to the ground, she thinks that the world is indeed breaking up, and she starts to run. Thornhill's paintings have a beautiful border pattern, repeated with variation of color and implementation in each picture. She may be at her best in pictures of mass movement. The best among these show all the hares rushing, then all the various animals rushing, then all the animals stopping, and then -- perhaps the best -- all the animals moving back to their habitat. This is not the first time that I have seen the lion tenderly carry the timid hare on his back as they return together to check the scene where the world was supposedly breaking up. The front flyleaf lists several awards that the book won, especially in Canada.

2005 Town Mouse and Country Mouse.  Illustrators Maria Mantovani & Renzo Barsotti.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  London: Mercury Junior: Mercury.  $8 from California, July, '13.

This story starts as a visit by the town mouse to his country relative is concluding.  On the way back to the city, he rests and is awakened by another country mouse, who offers to shelter him for the night.  The town mouse accepts this country mouse's invitation to stay for a few days.  A broom presents a first challenge in the city, and then a cat appears.  "You may live in luxury, but my life is much happier and more peaceful" (29).  The art enjoys the play of dimensions: the town mouse has a suitcase, and the country-mouse has patches on the long underwear that seems to serve as his sleepwear.   The two ride on the edge of a massive cart going to town.  The detail work on the faces of the two mice is well done!

2005 Two Frogs in Trouble: Based on a Fable Told by Paramahansa Yogananda. Written by Natalie Hale. Illustrated by Susie Richards. First edition, 1997. This printing, 2005. Paperbound. Los Angeles, CA: Self-Realization Fellowship. See 1997/2005.

2005 Usborne Aesop's Fables. By Anna Milbourne. Illustrated by Linda Edwards. Dust jacket. Hardbound. London: Usborne Publishing, Ltd. $16.95 from Educational Development Corporation through eBay, Nov., '05. 

This seems to be the first book I have that was printed in Dubai. It is a large-format, heavy book of 94 pages presenting sixteen fables listed on the early T of C. Each story gets one or two partial-page colored illustrations and an appropriate ring around each two-page set of pages. There are even some full-page illustrations, as for BF (21). Milbourne's writing is lively. Thus in BW, the young shepherd sighs to himself "Looking after sheep is as dull as ditchwater" (6). At Zeus' wedding feast, the monkey has all the banana splits he can eat (27)! Some of the storytelling here is quite creative. "How the tortoise got his shell" (26) is the Greek story of the tortoise staying at home when invited to Zeus' wedding. His key line is "I don't think I can be bothered" (26). In FC, the crow has stolen a freshly baked pie (31). SW is told in the better form (34). "How bees got their stings" (74) is a transformation and expansion of the original story. Here the bees are first utterly stingless. When Zeus provides them with a sting, they begin to use it against everyone for everything. Zeus, angry, limits each bee's sting to a single occurrence, and it will cost the bee's life. For writing this good, the art, though lively and colorful, is slightly disappointing. I would have hoped for more touches like the worried expression on the hare's face in TH on 51. I cannot deny the charm of the train in which the mice ride into town in TMCM (56-57). All in all, this book represents a worthwhile contemporary addition to fable versions.

2005 Usborne Aesop's Fables. Anna Milbourne. Illustrated by Linda Edwards. Dust jacket. Hardbound. London: Usborne Publishing Ltd. Gift of Mary Pat Ryan, Jan., '08.

A good rule of thumb for cataloguing books is to make a new entry for every book that is somehow new. Well, there is very little that is new about this book. I noticed, however, as I prepared to set it aside as an extra, that it sells for $16.99, while the book I already have catalogued sells for $16.95! Before we laugh too loud at printing up new dust-jackets to register a four-cent increase in the price, we should realize that this edition has the warning "Not for sale outside of the USA" whereas that book had the warning "Not for sale in Canada." The typesetting is also different on that portion of the back cover of the dust-jacket. I will repeat my comments from the $16.95 edition. This seems to be the first book I have that was printed in Dubai. It is a large-format, heavy book of 94 pages presenting sixteen fables listed on the early T of C. Each story gets one or two partial-page colored illustrations and an appropriate ring around each two-page set of pages. There are even some full-page illustrations, as for BF (21). Milbourne's writing is lively. Thus in BW, the young shepherd sighs to himself "Looking after sheep is as dull as ditchwater" (6). At Zeus' wedding feast, the monkey has all the banana splits he can eat (27)! Some of the storytelling here is quite creative. "How the tortoise got his shell" (26) is the Greek story of the tortoise staying at home when invited to Zeus' wedding. His key line is "I don't think I can be bothered" (26). In FC, the crow has stolen a freshly baked pie (31). SW is told in the better form (34). "How bees got their stings" (74) is a transformation and expansion of the original story. Here the bees are first utterly stingless. When Zeus provides them with a sting, they begin to use it against everyone for everything. Zeus, angry, limits each bee's sting to a single occurrence, and it will cost the bee's life. For writing this good, the art, though lively and colorful, is slightly disappointing. I would have hoped for more touches like the worried expression on the hare's face in TH on 51. I cannot deny the charm of the train in which the mice ride into town in TMCM (56-57). All in all, this book represents a worthwhile contemporary addition to fable versions.

2005 Velut in speculum inspicere: Der Mensch im Spiegel der Fabel: Phaedrus. Bearbeitet von Maria Ausserhofer und Martina Adami. Various artists. First edition. Paperbound. Bamberg: Antike und Gegenwart: C.C. Buchner. See 1997/2005.

2005 Wereldse Vertellingen. Mary-Ann Sandifort. Illustrated by Andrea Letterie. Hardbound. Den Haag: Ministerie van Buitenlandse Zaken/Ontwikkelingssamenwerking. Gift of Gert-Jan van Dijk, August, '09.

Here is a dear gift from a dear friend. Six stories with wonderfully lively illustrations take us into learning situations about the contemporary world. One story deals with an unnstable nest of ants, where one can even see young ants using slingshots! Another presents a squirrel who is not good in school. Do not miss the great bookmouse studying on 31! After each story there is a two-page reflection on the issue addressed by the story. The third story has some of the best illustrations of various animals in the desert. Its lesson concerns "Coherentie" (50-51). Is the fourth story about a caterpillar that is not yet ready to be transformed into a butterfly? Its lesson is titled "Reproductieve gezondheid en bestrijding van HIV/aids." Even I can understand that! The fifth story deals with clean water. The final story takes to the ocean, with delightful illustrations of octopi and different kinds of fish. Gert inscribes the book "Very glad to have found some item still lacking in the famous Carlson Collection!" 

2005 Wie Hund und Katz: Moderne Fabeln. Andreas Schlüter. Mit Bildern von Reinhard Michl. First printing. Hardbound. Hildesheim, Germany: Gerstenberg Verlag. €15.90 from Universitätsbuchhandlung Ziehank, Heidelberg, August, '06.

This book is fun! I am not sure that these stories deserve the title "fable," but they are engaging animal stories with something for readers to learn from each. And they are wonderfully illustrated. In the first story, "Geheimnisse" (7-18), all the animals of the village except one get worried because a thief is about. But the mystery is that, with all the break-ins, nothing gets stolen. Karla the cat, the only animal not to lock up her house and install all sorts of security devices, helps establish that a group of birds have been breaking into houses. They are searching for.mysteries! And mysteries are not the sort of thing that you lock up and install cameras to protect. In the second story, "Offene Rechnung" (19-27), ejected renters take matters into their own hands, build themselves good houses, and end up telling their former landlords, the rich skunk lawyer and his rat wife, that the latter are welcome "uns mal kreuzweise am Hintern zu lecken" (27). Some of the imagination here goes into giving the characters their names and roles. The skunk Dr. Stefan Stinktier sends out notice to all those renting homes from him. The list includes Wieland, the weasel, who weasels through his hole to find his contract; boar Wildschwein Werner murmurs "Schweinerei"; and bookworm "Bodo Bücherwurm" claims aggressively that the last chapter and last word on this matter have not yet been written. Michl's colored art work is delightful. Good examples include Hund Hektor as workman and Katze Karla as lounging femme fatale on 8-9 and and Stinktier Stefan with his wife Ratte Renate on 24-25. 

2005 Yu-yan-gu-shi: The Stories of Fables. Jayne Rutledge. Paperbound. Changchun City, Jilin Province, China: Bilingual Chinese Classics: Jilinwenshi Publisher. $9.99 from Liang Chen, Pittsburgh, PA, through eBay, Feb., '06. 

Here are twenty-nine fables presented across from each other on facing pages. The right-hand (English) page contains notes, especially on idiomatic expressions. Each of the stories takes two pages in each language, with one line-drawing for each fable. The first story, illustrated on the cover, has monkeys trying to get "the moon" out of a well. The second fable, very apt, tells of a poor calligraphy-writing minister who got angry when his nephew could not reproduce his sloppy characters. "Why didn't you ask me earlier? Now even I don't know them either" (9). These fables are wise. The third tells of a man instructed by his wife in how to make soup. After some time, he took out a spoonful and tasted it; it needed salt, and he salted the soup. Unfortunately, each time he came back, he tasted the soup from the same spoonful. Of course the soup ended up oversalted and undrinkable. Another clever fable (75) tells of two young men who found the lair of a wolf that had terrorized their village. But how could two youths defeat a wolf? They noticed two cubs and took them up separate trees with them. When the wolf returned, they alternated pinching the cubs' ears, frustrating and wearing the wolf out until it died between the two trees. Though there are Aesopic fables here, most of these stories seem to be Chinese stories. MSA appears on 39, though the father and son are bringing the donkey home from market in this version. BW is on 67. This is a well-produced paperback.

2005/6 The Buddha's Journey Home: New Buddhist Fables. Robert W. Long. Various artists. Second edition. Paperbound. : Lulu Publications. $11.43 from Buy.com, June, '08.

The T of C on 6-7 gives four sections, with fifteen stories in each: Travel Fables, Animal Fables, Villages and Towns, and The Buddha's Parables. Lulu.com is, according to their website, the "global leader in self-publishing." This is really a book of anecdotes -- about Buddha's trip back home when he was forty, as the foreword (4-5) explains. I have read the first eighteen, and have at last bumped into a fable. "The Deer's Desires" (27) tells the story of the deer who wanted a rider. He got the rider and lost his freedom. The Aesopic version of this fable may help readers by giving a reason for the animal's desire: there the horse desires to avenge himself against the stag. He does get revenge but loses his freedom, as does the deer here. Even the animal fables are told as anecdotes from Buddha's life. The first two anecdotes are incomplete: they are not a good first advertisement for Lulu's publishing! The black-and-white pictures have a strange effect. Many seem either elongated or pixelated. They are taken, apparently, from traditional Japanese artists, listed with their work in the List of Illustrations on 79-86.

2005? Aesop's Fables (miniature). Tupper Lake, NY/Aunt Luisa: McLoughlin Dollhouse Miniatures. $5.95 from Deb Schaum, Dollhouse Miniatures, Tupper Lake, NY, through eBay, June, '11.

This miniature is reproduced by a doll house expert. It seems clear that this tiny version is based on McLoughlin's Aesop's Fables, probably in the "Aunt Luisa" series. "Aunt Luisa" appears on the back of this book. It contains 16 pages (not including the flyleaves) with 6 full color plates. This book is 31/32" high by 25/32" wide and ⅛" thick. It is constructed using techniques the artist has developed for miniature books. I seem to recognize some of the illustrations more from seeing them on trade cards than from seeing them in a book somewhere. The TMCM picture near the book's center is a classic! This is surely my smallest find!

2005? Famous Stories from Panchatantra.  Retold by Rashmi Jaiswal.  Illustrated by P.P. Kasbekar.  Paperbound.  Mumbai: Alka Publications.  120 Rupees from Children Book Centre, Kolkata, Dec., '13.

I just wrote a few hours ago, a propos of "Selected Stories from Panchatantra," that it was curious that the same publisher put out two Panchatantra books by the same author but different illustrators within about four years of each other.  "Then again, there is yet another Panchatantra book within this series pictured on the back cover of this book!"  And this is that book pictured on that back cover!  It matches its series mate in format: 7" x 9¼". It has the same author, illustrator, and length of 120 pages.  It offers 38 numbered fables.  There is again a T of C on 3-4.  Among many old friends, I have enjoyed reading "Jackal Remains Jackal" (13).  A lioness brings up a jackal with her cubs but notices that the jackal hangs back while the cubs attack an elephant.  The lioness tells the jackal what he is and tells him that her cubs will never tolerate the company of a coward.  The talkative tortoise here flies with swans (58).    The foolish monkeys blow on their non-fire with bamboo pipes (66).  La Fontaine's cunning old cat judges between the squirrel and the mouse on 115-18.  The curious monkey on 118 loses his tail in the split log.  The cover proclaims "Illustrated in Colour," and there are one or two larger-than-half-page colored illustrations for each of the stories.  Most curious of them may be the detailed presentation of the bedbug and the mosquito on the fat king's bed (29).  The most dramatic may be the crab's throttling of the crane in mid-air on 91.

2005? Fünfzig Fabeln für Kinder. Wilhelm Hey NA. In Bildern gezeichnet von Otto Speckter. Hardbound. Stuttgart/Mannheim: Georg Wessermann/Minis 1 zu 12. €3.80 from Brigitte Hetzel, Mannheim, through eBay, July, '09.

Here is a doll-house miniature of a famous edition of (Hey and) Specktor's fables for children. For some reason, Hey was not being acknowledged as the author of the verses. The book is beautifully made as a facsimile of a 1920 reprinting of 15,000 to 20,000 copies of this popular book. Though the colored cover announces fifty fables, this small book contains only seventeen. It is a very nicely made book! Georg Wessermann in Stuttgart published the original. 

2005? The League of Rats and Other Fables. Compiled by Eric Jackson. Illustrations from Gustave Doré. Paperbound. Plymouth, MI: Tome Press. $1.99 from Dark Adventure Comics, Norcross, GA, through eBay, Nov., '10.

32 pages. Black-and-white. What a curious piece! Was this really meant as the first issue of regular magazine? In any case, this pamphlet collects all of La Fontaine's fables dealing with rats and mice. Each fable has one or two of Doré's illustrations. We are into the world, I suspect, of dark comics here. Good fables are a gift that keeps on giving!

2005? The Tailless Fox (Thai-English). Paperbound. $15.64 from Thai Craft Warehouse, through eBay, Nov., '10.

The Thai title translates into something like Aesop Tales Set 2 Language 2: Part 3 fox tails cut off. I am surprised that this is my first bilingual English/Thai booklet. This is a 12-page landscape pamphlet, 7½" x 6¾", with lively illustrations that look as though they were generated on a computer. Sorry that I cannot read the Thai credits. Here a voice interrupts the tailless fox's claims to say that the speaker saw a tail in a trap and that he thinks it belongs to the speaker. "Having heard that, the other foxes laughed at the tailess fox. The tailess fox was ashamed, so he ran away." Notice that "tailess" has one "l" inside the text but two on the cover. Moral? "Reasonable man could never be fooled." There are five other booklets in the set.

2005? To koritsaki me to gala.  NA.  Constanza.  Paperbound.  Athens:  Ekdoseis Sabbalas.  $5 from an unknown source, August, '15.

This version of MM is a twelve-page pamphlet.  Here the young milkmaid carries a large pitcher in her hands.  She stops along the way to contemplate her future purchases while bunnies inspect what is inside the pitcher.  Again, she stops to see a young fisherman and to row with him in his boat, which has mice riding on the rudder.  She also visits with a mule and two rabbits along the way.  She stumbles and loses her wooden shoe 5 km (?) from Yardim (?).  Surprisingly, this pamphlet advertises no other fables in this series.  Instead there are advertisements at the beginning for basic learning booklets and, at the end, on the inside back-cover, for math booklets and, on the outside cover, for other math and grammar booklets.  The front cover may be the best illustration: The girl proudly carries her pitcher of milk.  The back cover contains a seal "Early Readers Paperback $1.29."  A series of searches on the Sabbalas website could not yield further information on this booklet.  Copy on the inside cover "World Copyrights by: The Illustrated A.A./E. Testa S..L. Barcelona" yielded no help.

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2006

2006 A Race between Tortoise and Rabbit. Paperbound. Shaanxi Normal University General Publishing House. $5 from Jeremy Weiss, Sleepy Hollow, NY, March, '12.

Here is a very nicely produced pamphlet of 32 pages. The color work is well accomplished; the overall impression is of a slick children's book. Two-page spreads offer simple and lively illustrations. The art work emphasizes the animals' heads. The tortoise wears a baseball cap, and the rabbit wears shorts and saddle shoes. Surprisingly, the story starts by describing the rabbit and the tortoise as friends. On an outing together, the rabbit complains to the tortoise about the latter's pace. The tortoise warns in response that he will pass the rabbit when the rabbit stops. The English may struggle a bit: "When hearing that match, all small animals came to watch it happily." Or again: "The small rabbit played as walking." The rabbit soon leaves the main road to pick flowers, feels tired, sits on a lawn, and plays with the flowers he has picked. When he awakens, the rabbit walks unhurried towards the finish line. At the end, the rabbit hangs his head in shame. It looks as though there are nine other books in this series, but I cannot get enough information from the publisher's website to order them!

2006 A Selection of Aesop's Fables. Selected and translated by S[usan].T. Viguers. Illustrations based on the writings of Pliny the Elder by J.J. Engelbart. #60 of 100, signed by Engelbart and Viguers. Hardbound. Philadelphia and Minneapolis: Shandy and Snout Greek and Latin Classics: Shandy Press. $95 from Vamp and Tramp Booksellers, Birmingham, AL, March, '08.

"Commissioned by The Friends of the Print Collection of The Free Library of Philadelphia for Bound/Unbound, the 7th annual Robert F. Looney Memorial Event." Viguers draws most on Jacobs' 1894 collection. Viguers claims to have based her translation on the "Assemblies of Aesopic Tales of Demetrius Phalareus, the recently discovered scroll that miraculously survived the razings of the Alexandrian libraries." Viguers' particular contribution to fable telling may lie in the direct expostulations of the animals, like the fox's "Greoff gruff, grupp, grupp, grupp" comments while lapping up all the soup that the stork could not eat. The wolf with a bone in his throat coughs "Kuruff, kuruff, kuruff." One right-hand page of text is followed by a red-and-yellow right hand page of illustration with a moral beneath its picture. Particularly effective is Engelbart's depiction of LM, in which the lion resembles a ball of yarn! His DLS is also quite clever. The disguised ass strikes a Herculean pose. The morals give witness to some reflection. For OF, we read "Don't Pick a Model Who's Much Greater." In an afterword, Viguers takes those to task who find the fables of the Panchatantra offering a deeper philosophical vision than Aesop's. "I apologize for lapsing into sermon, but I firmly believe that Aesop's tales illuminate our path as they did that of the Greeks 2,600 years ago." This is a finely constructed book.

2006 A Sunday in Hell: Fables and Poems. Daniel Berrigan. Afterword by Hugh MacDonald. First edition. Paperbound. NY: Bunim & Bannigan, Ltd. $5.98 from Better World Books, June, '12.

I was surprised to notice a book promising fables by Fr. Dan Berrigan. What I have read is strong stuff. "The Hole in the Ground: A Parable for Peacemakers" (2) tells a story of a world turned inside out by greed, subservience, secrecy, and the fear of boredom. My sense is that some of Berrigan's fable-like stories start to stretch out and become like "Panchatantra" fables, leading to the next episode and the next story.. So, it seems to me, is "Yes Is Yes and No Is No" (24-31). "Yes, there is one wisdom only, and no, I have not known it until this moment! It is the wisdom of the hands that serve, of the tongue that forgets speech, of the silence that endures" (30). The title-piece, "A Sunday in Hell" (41-44) is a strong challenge, not least to anyone religious. I may have enjoyed most "The Committee and the Camel: or How a Famous Bishops' Letter on Nuclear Weapons Came to Be" (89-92). Another well-told tale is "A Mouse Named Max" (132-38). The tone there may be a bit lighter, but it is terribly heavy finally in "Father and Son" (161-2). A father returns to find his home destroyed and his son apparently burned in an ugly attack by pirates. He gathers what he thinks are his son's ashes and carries them in a sack on his back. He rebuilds his home and lives there alone. One night he hears a knock and is annoyed. "It is your son!" The father responds "Go away! My son is dead!" The two never meet again. "Do we prefer to carry the ashes of death, instead of hearing what we indeed hear, a voice at the door.?" (162). Berrigan will always ask us questions like that. 

2006 Aesop in a Monkey Suit: Fifty Fables of the Corporate Jungle. David Lignell. Paperbound. NY/Lincoln/Shanghai: iUniverse, Inc. $12.75 from Buy.com, June, '08.

This book is closer to Aesop than I thought it would be. It is among the best I have seen for "applications" of the fables. Each of the fifty fables cites a legitimate Aesopic forerunner and applies it with some success. A good sample is "The Worker, the Manager, and the Consultant," adapted from Aesop's "The Ass, the Fox, and the Lion." A worker and manager agree to save their jobs from downsizing. At work, a consultant is doing his job. The frightened manager approaches him, promises to win him some savings by eliminating the worker, and asks the consultant to promise not to target the manager's job. The consultant promises both safety, but in the end, he claims the manager's job as immediate savings and places the worker on probation, knowing that it will be easy to claim his job for savings whenever he wants to. The application is complex but appropriate. CP here is represented by "The Intern and the Copy Machine" (13). In a desperate, last-minute move, the intern recycles old memos to make copies of a new memo. Management likes the idea so much that using old memos becomes mandatory for all future new memos. "The Old Admin and the Job Aid" (31) is based on "The Old Woman and the Wine Jar." An old administrative assistant returns to the workforce, finds a job aid left by a predecessor in a drawer, and uses it to achieve success. "Oh, most thoughtful plredecessor! How nice you are to leave behind an accomplishment that continues to produce!" The "cases" here are short; there is one to a page with no illustrations.

2006 Aesop's Fables. Illustrated by Martha Lightfoot. First printing. Hardbound. London: Meadowside Children's Books. £7.99 from AwesomeBooks.co.uk, Nov., '10.

This book is big and dramatic! It will appeal to children by its helpful introductions of the characters, e.g., "A story about a not very nice hare and a pretty slow tortoise." I think one could best call the art primitive. It is simple and effective. There is little effort, for example, at perspective. FC is told differently. The fox begins by praising the cheese and opining that the crow would not want to share it. It looks fit for a queen. "Except of course that true Queens are those whose voices ring out across the woods." Then the crow turns to the usual flattery. The fox's departing words are "If you believe all that you're told, you'll soon go hungry!" As the cover indicates, the final fable is LM.

2006 Aesop's Fables. Selected and Illustrated by Lisbeth Zwerger. Dust jacket. Hardbound. NY: North-South Books. Gift of Mary Pat Ryan, May, '07.

This is the sixth version I have found of Lisbeth Zwerger's Aesop book. Her Aesop: 12 Fabeln appeared in 1989 as a large-format book. Two large English versions also appeared, apparently at the same time. There has been also a smaller English version and an even smaller German version. Cover pictures on other versions are either of the dancing camel or of TMCM. Here we have FC on both the cover and the front dust-jacket. This lovely book measures 9½" x 8¾". I still find Zwerger's artistry enchanting. I cannot check the various English translations right now. I am curious because the translation here, unattributed, is copyrighted by North-South Books in 2006. The dust jacket speaks of this book as a "reissue of Lisbeth Zwerger's gorgeously illustrated edition." The back cover and back dust-jacket both put at the top "12 Fables by Aesop," the original German title.

2006 Aesop's Fables.  Selected and Illustrated by Lisbeth Zwerger.  Second printing.  Paperbound.  NY: North-South Books.  $4 from an unknown source, June, '16.

This is the seventh version I have found of Lisbeth Zwerger's Aesop book.  Her "Aesop: 12 Fabeln" appeared in 1989 as a large-format book.  Two large English versions also appeared, apparently at the same time.  There has been also a smaller English version and an even smaller German version.  Cover pictures on other versions are either of the dancing camel or of TMCM.  Here we have a paperbound version of an otherwise identical hardbound version of 2006 from the same publisher.  The title-page reorganizes how the publisher is listed, and the back cover is organized slightly differently from both the back cover and the dust-jacket of the hardbound version.  FC on the front cover.  This lovely book measures 9½" x 8¾".  I still find Zwerger's artistry enchanting.  The back cover puts at the top "12 Fables by Aesop," the original German title

2006 Aesop's Fables. Vernon Jones. Illustrated by Arthur Rackham (NA). Afterword by Anna South. Apparently sixth printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. London: Collector's Library: CRW Publishing. $7.95 from Amazon.com, Oct., '11.

This is a handy small-format -- 6¼" x 4" -- presentation of the famous 1912 version by Vernon Jones and Arthur Rackham. Its cover proclaims it "complete and unabridged." It has several curious features. One is that all of Rackham's work, including the full-page colored illustrations, are presented in black-and-white. A second curiosity is that the volume acknowledges Vernon Jones but not Rackham. A third curiosity is that the flyleaf, afterword, and biographical note all speak of "three hundred fables," when there are 286 numbered fables on 256 pages. Has this British edition perhaps only recently been made available in the USA?

2006 Aesop's Fables: Learn Valuable Lessons. Illustrated by Yuri Hwang. Hardbound. New Delhi: Roli Junior. $1.99 from Kimberly Mettetal, Red Rock, AZ, through eBay, Dec., '11.

First published in Korea in 2006 by Yeowon Media, who owns the copyright. This is one of those eBay books that costs twice as much to ship as to buy! The characteristic of Hwang's art work here seems to be eyes that are made of snaps, buttons, and disks. The art is multi-media and three dimensional: fabrics are applied on fabrics, with other materials added. This large-format book for children presents four fables, with storyboard pages and comments for parents at the end. BW features three days, with disaster on the third day. Notice the sheep, two of which echo the boy's dramatic gesture while a third lies down and shields her eyes. DS begins with a greedy dog snatching meat from another dog's mouth. The first page of TMCM features one of the best three-dimensional illustrations showing the country mouse's three large bags full of seeds. Later in the story, a curled wire shows the leap of the mice from the table. The result of this story is that the country mouse is no longer jealous of the city mouse. The grasshopper's answer in GA is good: "I was so busy singing that I didn't even realise that winter was coming!" The ant answers: "Humph! Then you should just sing and not eat!" The last set of pages is coming loose.

2006 Aisopou Mythoi apo ta Palaitupa tes Ethnikes Bibliothekes tes Ellados.  Various artists and translators.  Paperbound.  Thessalonike: Sto Plaisio.  $15 from E. Ntanoura, Thessaloniki, Greece, July, '16.

I am guessing that the title approximates "Aesop's Fables from the Antiquities of the National Library of Greece."  This is a nicely designed pamphlet of 16 pages presenting old texts, old illustrations, and contemporary Greek translations.  After a biography of Aesop, fables are presented, one or two to a two-page spread, with modern and ancient Greek titles.  Those presented are: "The Lion and Rabbit"; "The Braggart"; "The Lion and the Fox"; "Snails"; "Death and the Old Man"; "The Serpent"; "The Ass Carrying an Image"; and "The Lion and the Frog."  There are plenty of library marks and a strip of woodcut figures and other images across the base of the book.

2006 Après vous, M de La Fontaine…Contrefables. Gudule. Paperbound. Paris: Le Livre de Poche Jeunesse; Fleurs d'encre: Hachette Jeunesse. €4.42 from amazon.fr, August, '07.

The author writes in the Avant-Propos: "Par une suite en forme d'hommage, j'ai voulu, aujourd'hui, rendre justice aux victimes d'une tradition quelque peu contestable. Corbeaux, cigales, agneaux, belettes et petits lapins, c'est à vous que je dedie ces pages" (7). In a manner shared to some degree by Ambrose Bierce, Gudule (Anne Duguël) makes something new of the fables. Where Bierce changes the ending, Gudule presents a surprising next event after the fable. There is a T of C of the twenty-one fables at the back. Each contre-fable is preceded by its normal fable. From what I can understand of FC, the two decide to work together for food in the future. GA's cigale sings one last plaintive song before she dies -- and is showered with recognition and money! Alas, the poet moralizes, without art we do not know how hungry and alone people are. The most deplorable are the poor who have no talent! The brother and sister of the dead weasel and rabbit get revenge on the cat who ate them by bringing the cat before the judge; if the poor would unite, as tyrants know, they would not long be tyrannized. The cobbler takes the financier's money and throws a three-day feast for all the poor. He finds serenity himself in helping others, and he makes the financier angrier than ever! Pity there is no art with the individual fables. The front-cover presents a nicely embossed set of counter-figures, like an ant playing the guitar, a hare catching up to an exhausted tortoise, and a crow reaching, in an apparently friendly way, for the fox's cheese. Is that a wolf eating a carrot with a lamb following?

2006 Basni. By Sergei Michalkov. Illustrations by Galina Zolovskaia. Hardbound. Moscow: EKSMO. €9.90 from Gelikon Buchhandlung, Berlin, August, '07. Extra copy from an unknown source.

I will have to sit down with a Russian friend soon to read these through. The book is well put together, and the illustrations -- colored illustrations filling out every page and balancing nicely with text -- are lively. There is a T of C at the end for the eighteen fables here. I was happy to find a Russian bookstore and then to find a fable book in it.

2006 Chinese Fables Remembered. As told by Miwa Kurita. Translated by Matthew Galgani. Illustrated by Saoko Mitsukuri. Hardbound. Berkeley: Asian Folktales Retold: Heian: Stone Bridge Press. $3.99 from Better World Books Warehouse, Mishawaka, IN, Jan., '11.

Originally published in Japan by Hoshinowakai. In "The Brothers and the Birds," a kind younger brother, thrown out of the home by his older brother, is taken by some grateful birds to a land of gold, with which he fills his shoes and is satisfied. The older brother puts himself in a position where the birds will do the same for him, but he brings along three large bags, which he fills with gold. The birds are not able to carry him home. He plummets to earth and is never heard from again. I would say that the magic bird-transport of the human being moves this story into the fairy-tale category. The second story, "The Two Rooster Friends," may not work for us. A conceited purple rooster more than once gets himself into trouble taking on tasks he cannot do. When a duck asks him why he jumped into a river when he did not know how to swim, the purple rooster decides never again to wander away from his home. I miss the wit of this tale. This book originally belonged to the Queens Borough Public Library, Jamaica, NY.

2006 Cigales, Grasshoppers, and Ants.  William M. Cheney.  Foreword by Glen Dawson.  Limited edition of 100 copies.  Hardbound.  Worcester, MA: The Castle Press: Robert C. Bradbury Miniature Books.  $34.99 from Tracy Bradbury, Brooklyn, NY, through eBay, July, '11.  

This is a well bound miniature book (2 1/8" x 2 7/8") with a colophon page at the back.  This is apparently Volume 1 of a two volume set.  It has a green frontispiece grasshopper illustration.  The book is printed in black and green inks.  The covers are gilt-stamped green cloth, and the binding is square and tight. The foreword by Glen Dawson reviews the history of Dawson's Book Shop, including the part played by William M. Cheney.  It closes with this memorable sentence: "Making and selling miniature books is a fun way of making very little money."  Then an introduction presents William Cheney, who made forty-seven miniature books.  The body of the book is, surprisingly, a letter from Cheney to Dawson on cigales and grasshoppers.  A publisher's note tells us that the frontispiece grasshopper is Cheney's drawing for "Trois Fables de La Fontaine," also in this collection.  This strange little book is complemented by an even stranger companion volume, described by "John Howell for Books" this way: "Volume 2 unpaginated, with a loosely laid in title page which denotes 10 pieces of Miniature Ephemera printed by William M. Cheney and mounted on 10 blank pages in mylar sleeves attached to the pages, additional pages allows the owner to add Cheney ephemera as they add to their collection."

2006 De Leeuw en de Aap: Oude fables opnieuw verteld. Daphne Deckers. Illustraties: Wilbert van der Steen. Hardbound. AH Baarn: Tirion Uitgevers BV. €14.99 from Boekhandel Stevensterk, Utrecht, June, '09.

This book was a pleasant find during a delightful afternoon of book-hunting with Gert-Jan van Dijk as we played hookey from the Renard Conference in Utrecht. The books had to be shipped to me in Heidelberg, but that was fine. The eleven stories look like great fun. Two seem to work off of traditional fables. Is "The Tiger and the Goat" (14) a replay of "The Lion and the Fox"? The illustration shows prints going into the tiger's cave but not coming out. I am not sure what birds those are in the eleventh story, but they have a turtle flying on the stick they hold in their claws (59). The art seems to show a grained, woven texture as though it were done originally on canvas. I would love to know more about these stories!

2006 De Mück un de Lööv: Fabeln. Plattdütsch vun Johann Wilhelm Thomsen. Hardbound. Heide: Boyens Medien GmbH. €9.90 from Buchpark.de, July, '07.

Both of sets of endpapers offer a seventy-word lexicon of Plattdeutsch. Otherwise this book is serious about offering fables. The last three pages of this 120-page volume are an afterword by Thomsen. The rest of the book offers straight fables without illustration. The back page speaks of the "bildhaften plattdeutschen Sprache des Bauern und Schriftstellers Johann Wilhelm Thomsen." I could not find Thomsen on the web. This statement makes it seem as though he wrote some time ago. Reading one of these fables is not hard if it is a well-known story. The sounds are off by one turn. Unfortunately, there is no T of C in the book.

2006 El Oso y el Zorro/The Bear and the Fox. Gunter Pauli. Illustrated by Pamela Salazar Ocampo. First edition. Paperbound. Bogotá: Fábulas Zeri "Para nunc dejar de soñar"/Zeri Fables "To never stop dreaming": Fundación Hogares Juveniles Campesinos. $9.48 from Better World Books, Jan., '09.

Here is a curious piece of work. It presents a highly reflective fable. The fox challenges the bear, who has caught a big fish, by asking if he is aware that in some cultures one is a thief if he has more than he needs. The bear offers several reflections that give a good defense for his action: he is about to hibernate, and there are more hunters than usual. The fox challenges again: in Islam, you should give a percentage of your income to the needy in order to get to heaven. The bear answers that he is happy to survive on earth. Mention of heaven brings up the question: Is there a heaven for foxes? The fox answers: "There is always heaven if you believe in it" (16). When the bear asks if the fox does something for the poor, he answers that, whenever he finds a lost lamb, he helps it to get to heaven fast. The bear asks "Isn't that murder?" The fable closes with a difficult expostulation, from whom is not clear: "And it has only just begun!" What has only just begun? A good deal of factual and interpretative material follows, including a good section on "Emotional Intelligence" (29): "The cascade of questions that follow unmask the true intent of the fox. The questions evolve in such a way that the fable ends in the demise of empathy for the fox." For a very young book, this one has already been around. Distributed by Chelsesa Green Publishing, It belonged to the Brooklyn Public Library. Then I received it -- not cheap -- from Better World Books. I want to look into other Zeri Fables. There seem to be some thirty-six booklets produced, though many look like they are not fables.

2006 Fabeln. Neu erzählt von Käthe Recheis. Bilder von Monika Laimgruber. Erste Auflage, Nachdruck. Hardbound. Vienna: öbvhpt Verlagsgmbh. See 2003/6.

2006 Fables de La Fontaine avec adaptations créoles et sources.  Présentées par Suzanne Dracius.  Illustrations de Choko.  Hardbound.  Paris: Collection Jeunesse:  Éditions Desnel.  €15 from Gibert Jeune, Paris, August, '17.

This landscape-formatted book is engaging particularly for two reasons.  One is the arresting illustrations -- acrylics? -- by Choko, each a full page.  The other is that, if I understand the French correctly, one of the four texts offered for each fable is a Creole adaptation of La Fontaine dating back to 1846 and composed by a slave for the entertainment of his fellow slaves.  The other three texts are a contemporary Creole version, La Fontaine's original, and La Fontaine's source.  The short introduction by Dracius raises a question for me: Are these adaptations "travestissements" of La Fontaine?  My French dictionary lists not only "travesty" as a translation for "travestissement" but also "dressing up."  The latter understanding makes much more sense to me here.  Among the best illustrations for the twelve fables here, the ant in GA sleeps on a pile of cash (5).  In FC, the crow holds a cd in his beak and the fox is listening to a music player with earbuds (9).  WL gets a more traditional handling on 25.  DS is applied to a dog with shoe(s?) in his mouth looking at exquisite shoes in a shop window (51).  Choko's milkmaid is sassy (65)!  There is, finally, a surprising image for "Women and the Secrets" (71).  Fun!

2006 Fables de La Fontaine 1. Illustrations: Irina Georgeta Pusztai. Hardbound. Montreal: Les Classiques Tormont. $3.30 from Marie Gervais, St.-Urbain-Premier, Quebec, Canada, through eBay, Dec., '10.

My hat is off to Tormont. They get more mileage out of their good work than anyone else I know. They had done three different publications out of a set of illustrations by Georgeta Pusztai: a box of five English books, a box of five French books, and a gathering of the Best of Aesop's Fables published in 2001. Here comes a fourth presentation of the same illustrations, now with English texts of La Fontaine's fables. This is a set of three volumes, and so each contains more fables than the sets of five books done in English and French in boxes in 1997, even though the illustrations are the same as they were there. The series has shifted from "Les Editions Tormont" to "Les Classiques Tormont." This volume has nine fables, with FC on the cover. The title-page illustration of a stream is well done. It introduces us to the WL fable later in the book.

2006 Fables de La Fontaine 2. Illustrations: Irina Georgeta Pusztai. Hardbound. Montreal: Les Classiques Tormont: Tormont. $3.30 from Marie Gervais, St.-Urbain-Premier, Quebec, Canada, through eBay, Dec., '10.

My hat is off to Tormont. They get more mileage out of their good work than anyone else I know. They had done three different publications out of a set of illustrations by Georgeta Pusztai: a box of five English books, a box of five French books, and a gathering of the Best of Aesop's Fables published in 2001. Here comes a fourth presentation of the same illustrations, now with English texts of La Fontaine's fables. This is a set of three volumes, and so each contains more fables than the sets of five books done in English and French in boxes in 1997, even though the illustrations are the same as they were there. The series has shifted from "Les Editions Tormont" to "Les Classiques Tormont." This volume has eight fables, with MM on the cover. Is the title-page illustration of a church-tower in the background a pointer to the background of MM's experience? I find particularly good the presentation of SS on 22-24, echoed on the back cover of the book.

2006 Fables de La Fontaine 3. Illustrations: Irina Georgeta Pusztai. Hardbound. Montreal: Les Classiques Tormont: Tormont. $3.30 from Marie Gervais, St.-Urbain-Premier, Quebec, Canada, through eBay, Dec., '10.

My hat is off to Tormont. They get more mileage out of their good work than anyone else I know. They had done three different publications out of a set of illustrations by Georgeta Pusztai: a box of five English books, a box of five French books, and a gathering of the Best of Aesop's Fables published in 2001. Here comes a fourth presentation of the same illustrations, now with English texts of La Fontaine's fables. This is a set of three volumes, and so each contains more fables than the sets of five books done in English and French in boxes in 1997, even though the illustrations are the same as they were there. The series has shifted from "Les Editions Tormont" to "Les Classiques Tormont." This volume has nine fables, with WC on the cover. FG is particularly well done in this edition: the fox lips his chops looking at the grapes (20). Also well done is the last fable: the wolf lurks around the corner not only on 23 but also on 24.

2006 Fables d'Ésope. Racontées par Nora Garay. Illustrées par Lisbeth Zwerger. Hardbound. Grossau, Zurich: Éditions Nord-Sud. $7.5 Marie Gervais through eBay, Nov., '08.

North-South continues to extend its publication of this book first done in German in 1989. This French edition represents the fourth language in which I have this book. This edition, slightly smaller than some of the other editions of Zwerger's work, features FC on its cover. The book follows the usual pattern for Zwerger's fables of putting texts on the left and illustrations on the right-hand page. As I have written before, Zwerger's twelve ink-and-wash illustrations are witty and delightful. The best illustration features the camel dancing and the animals laughing. Other good illustrations present the curious country mouse, the amazed Satyr, the leaping frogs, the tortoise and the hare with runners' numbers on their backs, the sow with pacifiers, and the moon-mother with sewing work.

2006 Fables of La Fontaine. Compiled and Edited by Koren Christofides; Translations by Constantine Christofides and Christopher Carsten. Introduction by Constantine Christofides. Apparent first printing. Paperbound. Seattle: University of Washington Press. $9.99 from Irving Cumberpatch, Brooklyn, through eBay, August, '06.

In 1855 the French caricaturist Honoré Daumier and other artists proposed to illustrate anew the fables of la Fontaine. Their project was never realized, but it inspired "The Fables Project," out of which this book comes. Painter Koren Christofides brings together more than sixty artists from the USA, Europe, and Asia to create original artwork for La Fontaine's fables. These illustrations -- by painters, printmakers, photographers, ceramists, sculptors, conceptual artists, fiber artists, and art historians -- celebrate an extraordinary intersection of contemporary art with the fabulist tradition. There are sixty-five fables here, including both the familiar and the less known. The introduction by Constantine Christofides describes the volatile social context of seventeenth-century France as well as the literary tradition, stemming from Aesop, that underlies La Fontaine's fables. Koren Christofides, the project's initiator and director, gives a curator's account in her preface of the present-day artists' exhibition from which the book's illustrations were chosen. Each artist chose a fable and was required to illustrate it in an 8" x 11" format. This book itself is 8½" x 11" and has xxii + 150 pages. Let me list first some of the more provocative and unusual illustrations: Dean Goelz's "The Fox Brings the Wolf to Trial Before the Monkey" (21), which features the same human face in all three white animals; Valerie du Chene's "Sponge Donkey, Salt Donkey" (27), which seems to hinge on a joke using the phrase "trou d'eau"; Jesse Bransford's "The Crow Who Wanted to Imitate the Eagle" (33), with overlays including a space capsule; Gene Gentry McMahon's "The Cat Transformed into a Woman" (35) with a bride clenching her teeth around a caught mouse; and Nathaniel Vaughn's "The Cat, the Weasel, and the Little Rabbit" (79), with a maze of habitations. Good traditional representations of the fables include Shirley Scheier's "The Frog and the Rat" (51), which combines colored and black-and-white figures; Norman Lundin's 2P (55), stately, simple, and traditional; Linda Beaumont's "The Ears of the Hare" (57), with a spectral monster facing the bunny; and Elin O'Hara Slavick's "The Animals Sick from the Plague" (69), a terribly simple presentation of the hanged donkey with a patch of grass in its mouth. Constantine Christofides is professor emeritus of comparative literature, French, and art history at the University of Washington. Christopher Carsten, a poet and translator, is on the faculty at the Institute for American Universities.

2006 Fables: When Animals Talk: Tales for Grownups. Written and Illustrated by Laura Seeman. Paperbound. NY/Lincoln/Shanghai: iUniverse, Inc. $9.50 from Buy.com, May, '08.

Thirty four fables done in a variety of rhyming verse forms. Some of them present established fables, like "Quartet" (6) and "The Dog and His Reflexion" (9). Others present a traditional fable with a change of character like "The Deer and His Friends" (5), based upon Gay's "The Hare and Her Many Friends." Others are new but with perceptions typical for fables, like "The Antelope" (1) who has to live in old age with cousins who rise early and stupidly agree to arrive promptly to be cast by a lion supposedly a director from Hollywood. His set turns out to be his den, from which the stupid cousins never emerge. "Better late forever." Similarly "The Eagle" (3-4) presents a main character who finds smaller birds mistakenly admiring him, when he knows he is "a dysfunctional mess." The need to rhyme can sometimes force the poetry, as in these two lines from "Quartet" (6): "And so to charm each living soul/With two violins, a bass and viol." At other times the rhyming shows a decided cleverness, as at the finish of "The Crow and the Partridge" (10). The partridge has been telling the crow not to imitate the partridge's walk. "Instead of the partridge taking umbrage,/He ought to be flattered by the crow's succumbrage." The black-and-white drawings for about a third of the fables are indifferent. The colored illustrations by Seeman on the cover are more interesting, I believe. My favorite from this collection is "The Hippopotamus" (13-14). The hippo complains that he is never in fables. A wise turtle gives him a sage response that concludes: "But calm and fat, the way you are,/To me you're handsomer by far/Than a skinny giraffe or a slithering snake./So keep out of fables and enjoy your lake."

2006 Fable's Whistle. By Michael Dahl. Illustrated by Ji Sun Lee. Hardbound. Minneapolis, MN: Read-It Readers, Red Level: Picture Window Books. $1.80 from ScrollsAnew, Good Thunder, MN, through Amazon Marketplace, Jan., '08.

"Fable" turns out to be the name of this children's book's main subject, a pet dog. The whistle referred to in the title is just that. The book's narrator learns to use a whistle to bring Fable back home when he is out romping. "The Red Level presents familiar topics using common words and repeating sentence patterns." That is just what this book does.

2006 Famous Stories from Panchatantra.  NA.  Rangoli.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  Delhi: Shanti Children's Books:  Shanti Publications.  135 Rupees from Children Book Centre, Kolkata, Dec., '13.  

This volume seems a member of a series that also includes "Famous Stories from Jataka Tales," although there seems to be no indication here of the book's series.  The dust jacket lists many other similar books, including the Jatakas volume, which I have listed under 200July, '13.  Here there are thirty-four stories on 112 pages after an opening T of C.  The dust-jacket is again glued to the covers, which here show the newly constructed lion attacking his makers (see 29) and, on the back, the man with a wheel on his head (see 112).  The little monkey again loses his tail to the unwedged log (17).  LM is told in unusual fashion.  Here the lion is snoring so loud that the mouse tries to wake him up (49)!  In the image he even pulls his mane.  Each story gets several colored pictures.  The illustrations are simple but lively.  A good example is the dreaming Brahmin on 85 who soon unwittingly destroys the foundation of his dreams (8

2006 Favorite Stories. Paperbound. Kearney, NE: Ginormous Coloring Books. $3.99 from Borders, Omaha, June, '08.

This book is in the competition for the largest format in the fable collection: 22" x 17". The front cover is a colored picture of many of the main characters of these stories, with Cinderella and Prince Charming at their center, complete with a castle in the background. There is a canvas binding and a plain cardboard back-cover. Ten stories run two to six pages in length. The seventh of them is TH, with a single large illustration on each of its four pages. The telling is standard with the traditional moral: "slow but steady wins the race!" The pictures are huge outline designs for the avid reader to color in.

2006 Fox Fables (Arabic and English). Retold by Dawn Casey. Arabic translation by Wafa' Tarnowska. Illustrated by Jago. Paperbound. London: Mantra Lingua Ltd. AU$27.95 from Asia Bookroom, Macquarie ACT, Australia by mail, July, '08.

This is a large, handsome, landscape-formatted book of 32 pages presenting two fables bilingually. It belongs to a series. The back cover's explanations do not make totally clear whether there is one portion of the series that presents many different fables. It does make clear that a portion of the series presents the two fables of this book by pairing English with a number of different languages, one for each book. I count thirty-three languages listed on the back cover. Good for them! I hope at some flea market some day to get all thirty-three! FS is visually splendid! The size of the book allows Jago to create impressive illustrations like that of the crane unable to slurp up soup as well as three detailed specific views of her attempts. Casey has the crane thank the fox for his kindness politely and add: "Please let me repay you -- come to dinner at my house." The page after the story lists activities: writing, art, "maths," storytelling, and music. The second story here is "King of the Forest," and it is labelled a Chinese fable. Tiger comes upon fox and frightens him. In desperation, fox claims that he is king of the forest. Tiger roars with laughter. Fox answers that he will show tiger. "This I've got to see," tiger says. Fox gets tiger to walk behind him. Of course, every animal upon whom these two come runs away in respect. Tiger is fooled and pays his respects to the king of the forest. Fox bids him be gone and then, on the way home, has a good laugh over the whole ploy. This story is also strongly illustrated.

2006 Fox Fables (Bengali and English).  Retold by Dawn Casey/Bengali translation by Kanai Datta.  Illustrated by Jago.  Paperbound.  London: Mantra Lingua Ltd.  $18.40 from Better World Books, Jan., '14.

This is a large, handsome, landscape-formatted book of 32 pages presenting two fables bilingually.  It belongs to a series, of which I now have six.  The series presents the two fables of this book by pairing English with a number of different languages, one for each book.  FS is visually splendid!  The size of the book allows Jago to create impressive illustrations like that of the crane unable to slurp up soup as well as three detailed specific views of her attempts.  Casey has the crane thank the fox for his kindness politely and add: "Please let me repay you -- come to dinner at my house."  The page after the story lists activities: writing, art, "maths," storytelling, and music.  The second story here is "King of the Forest," and it is labelled a Chinese fable.  Tiger comes upon fox and frightens him.  In desperation, fox claims that he is king of the forest.  Tiger roars with laughter.  Fox answers that he will show tiger.  "This I've got to see," tiger says.  Fox gets tiger to walk behind him.  Of course, every animal upon whom these two come runs away in respect.  Tiger is fooled and pays his respects to the king of the forest.  Fox bids him be gone and then, on the way home, has a good laugh over the whole ploy.  This story is also strongly illustrated.  This copy belonged to the Houston Public Library.

2006 Fox Fables (Urdu and English).  Retold by Dawn Casey/Urdu Translation by Qamar Zamani.  Illustrated by Jago.  Paperbound.  London: Mantra Lingua Ltd.  £2.49 from Awesome Books, Wallingford, UK, April, '12.

This is the second version I have found of this large, handsome, landscape-formatted book of 32 pages presenting two fables bilingually. Whereas the copy I found four years ago was Arabic and English, this copy is Urdu and English. I hope at some flea market some day to get all thirty-three bilingual translations! FS is visually splendid! The size of the book allows Jago to create impressive illustrations like that of the crane unable to slurp up soup as well as three detailed specific views of her attempts. Casey has the crane thank the fox for his kindness politely and add: "Please let me repay you -- come to dinner at my house." The page after the story lists activities: writing, art, "maths," storytelling, and music. The second story here is "The Ruler of the Forest," and it is labelled a Chinese fable. It was called "King of the Forest" in my earlier version. Tiger comes upon fox and frightens him. In desperation, fox claims that he is ruler of the forest. Tiger roars with laughter. Fox answers that he will show tiger. "This I've got to see," tiger says. Fox gets tiger to walk behind him. Of course, every animal upon whom these two come runs away in respect. Tiger is fooled and pays his respects to the ruler of the forest. Fox bids him be gone and then, on the way home, has a good laugh over the whole ploy. This story is also strongly illustrated. I fear this copy is lacking its very first inside page. I am thus unsure of the Urdu translator of the first fable.

2006 Fox Fables (Swahili and English). Retold by Dawn Casey. Illustrated by Jago. Paperbound. London: Mantra Lingua Ltd. £7.99 from Awesome Books, Wallingford, UK, June, '12.

This is the third version I have found of this large, handsome, landscape-formatted book of 32 pages presenting two fables bilingually. Earlier copies have combined English with Arabic and English with Urdu. Here English is combined with Swahili. The Swahili translator is not acknoweldged for either story. I hope at some flea market some day to get all thirty-three bilingual translations! FS is visually splendid! The size of the book allows Jago to create impressive illustrations like that of the crane unable to slurp up soup as well as three detailed specific views of her attempts. Casey has the crane thank the fox for his kindness politely and add: "Please let me repay you -- come to dinner at my house." The page after the story lists activities: writing, art, "maths," storytelling, and music. The second story here is "The King of the Forest," and it is labelled a Chinese fable. Tiger comes upon fox and frightens him. In desperation, fox claims that he is ruler of the forest. Tiger roars with laughter. Fox answers that he will show tiger. "This I've got to see," tiger says. Fox gets tiger to walk behind him. Of course, every animal upon whom these two come runs away in respect. Tiger is fooled and pays his respects to the ruler of the forest. Fox bids him be gone and then, on the way home, has a good laugh over the whole ploy. This story is also strongly illustrated. 

2006 Fractured Frazzled Folk Fables and Fairy Farces. Jay Dubya. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. eBookstand Books. $28.48 from Better World Books through eBay, Nov., '09.

"A Sap's Fables" covers the first thirteen pages of the book. These stories are not to be confused with Philip Moss's 1996 A Sap's Fables: The Lion at the Pond and Other Tales. Fourteen fables are parodied here in adult, sometimes obscene, fashion. I find the transformations frequently creative; at their best, they might remind one of Bierce or Thurber. Those who are offended by four-letter words would do better to take a pass on reading this volume! Some of the other humor is repeatable here, like rhymes and plays on words. An example of the first comes from the city mouse in TMCM: "I guess that simple country mice know little beyond rice and lice to be concise" (1). Two examples of the latter come together in BW when a quip to the jokester shepherd comes from "a villager holding a nine iron and a baloney sand wedge" (2). The shepherd retorts "I always wear two pair of pants in case I get a hole in one!" The wolf in sheep's clothing kills the sheep by having them die laughing over his bad humor (4). The crow who has dropped stones into the pitcher has been drinking gin without knowing it and exclaims "This well water tastes really well!" Soon we read "Oh well, all's well that ends well!" (6). The crow in FC announces after dropping the cheese that it is tainted with arsenic (7). My biggest surprise comes in GA when the rejected grasshopper eats the ants (9)! At the end of MSA, the miller takes the pole and beats all his critics. He then steals their asses and sells them for a handsome profit (12)! The book's second and much longer section carries on with myths, legends, and folktales, presumably presented in the same vein. There tends to be a full empty page separating the stories late in the book.

2006 Gather 'Round the Dinner Fable: Read-Aloud Story Devotions for Families. Steven James. Paperbound. Colorado Springs, Colorado: Honor Books: Cook Communications Ministries. $0.99 from C. Jackson, Joshua, TX, through eBay, Dec., '07.

There are fifty-seven chapters to this unusual book. Each chapter, meant for use at a Christian family dinner table, includes finding an object, asking particular questions, hearing a story, learning from scripture, and saying a prayer. As James writes in the introduction, "The kid-friendly parables and fables in this book will help you pass along important biblical truths to your children in a fun and engaging way" (10). The stories are about a page long and often shorter. The first is about Wanda, a piece of bubble gum. She fears the "Great White Stones of Death" but soon enough comes to enjoy fulfilling purpose, to make great bubbles. The third story is about the chocolate-loving pig who could never say "No" and the stork who reacts to the pig's obesity so strongly that he can never say "Yes." In the fifth story, a judge condemns two thieves. The one who actually stole things from people's homes needs to return them plus a bit more. The thief who only occupied people while his partner stole then expects to get an even softer punishment. He gets ten years in the penitentiary for stealing people's time.

2006 Jean de La Fontaine: Les Fables en BD. Various artists. Textes biographiques: Marion Lecoq. Hardbound. Darnetal, France: Littérature en BD: Editions Petit à Petit. €13.51 from amazon.fr, August, '07.

Here is a hardbound comic book about 6" x 8½" which I sought while in Paris and all around Germany last summer. No one knew what I was talking about except one book dealer in Berlin, and he could not promise delivery within a few days. So I ended up ordering it through Amazon in France once I got home. It is a worthy book. The eleven fables are portrayed faithfully, each first in a normal text before its graphic presentation. The text is accompanied by a short section of La Fontaine's biography by Marion Lecoq. The closest thing to a T of C is on the back cover, complete with the different artist for each of the eleven fables here, but alas without page numbers. The artistic styles are highly different from each other. For me, one with a very strong impact is CW by Eden Pacino and Boris Joly-Erard (30-40). The artists here are open to updating the fables. Thus the tortoise of TH (50-58) is a young woman with a huge backpack; she does carry her house! The cart that is stuck is really an autobus overloaded with baggage (59-65). This penchant may go too far in TT (73-82) when the birds' "machine" turns out not to be a simple stick but an air-balloon with two baskets connected with a stick. Why could the turtle not ride in one of the baskets?

2006 JOPERD: The Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance, April, 2006, Volume 77, Number 4. Douglas R. Hochstetler et al. Charles H. Bennett. Paperbound. Reston, VA: The American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance. Gift of the publisher, April, '06. One extra copy from the publisher, April, 2006. 

This issue of JOPERD contains Douglas R. Hochstetler's article, "Using Narratives to Enhance Moral Education in Sport" on 37-44. One of the illustrations for the article--Charles H. Bennett's GA on 39--came from the Carlson Fable Collection at Creighton University. Michael Shoemaker, editor of JOPERD, sent an accompanying letter of thanks and congratulations on the web site.

2006 La Fontaine aux fables (Volume 3): Douze fables de La Fontaine interprétées en bande dessinée: Texte Intégral. Various artists. Hardbound. Paris: Guy Delcourt Productions. €22.60 from Album, Paris, July, '07.

This is a third high-class volume of comics representing twelve fables of La Fontaine, like the first two by Delcourt in 2002 and 2004, respectively. The artist for each fable can again be found in the T of C at the back and also on the back cover; in fact there are again twelve different artists, and their styles of presentation are quite different. The endpapers have changed. We now have, alas, plain green paper. The very first picture, for "Les Animaux malades de la peste," is a spine-tingler done in black, blue, and purple (3). In fact, this fable turns out to be a delight, as when the artist pictures the lamb hearing the fox say that the murderous lion did sheep an honor by eating them (5)! By the end of that page, everyone has a halo over his head, including the dangling spider. The story ends dramatically on 7 with the fly-infested skeleton of the poor ass who confessed to eating some of the monks' grass as he passed along their meadow. I have never seen a stag with a rack like that on 8! Another favorite of mine is FM on 18-21, which ends with the hawk's nestlings picking over the bones of both the frog and the mouse. I enjoy the variety and wit that go into these three comics. I want to see about using them in some interactive mode with people.

2006 La Fontaine: Selected Fables. Translation by James Michie. Illustrations by J.J. Grandville. Introduction by Geoffrey Grigson. Paperbound. NY: Penguin Classics. $9.33 from Buy.com through eBay, May, '08.

This Penguin Classic is slightly smaller and only in paperback, but it otherwise is a direct copy of the 1979 Viking edition, including Michie's translations and J.J. Grandville's illustrations. Grandville's illustrations remain a treasure-house. Unfortunately, the same issues concerning the size of the illustrations and their uneven quality continue here. Grandville does a good job of dressing animals up, and often suggests in the picture the social point. Like its source, this book stops very abruptly after 272; there is an illustration facing 272 with a blank obverse--and then the back cover.

2006 La Liebre y la Tortuga.  Adaptación de Maura Gaetán.  Ilustraciones de Van Gool.  First edition.  Paperbound.  Buenos Aires: Colección Se leer:  Sigmar.  $8 from Christian Tottino, Buenos Aires, through eBay, April, '15.

This 24-page pamphlet dresses up both main characters.  The friendly tortoise has scarf, cap, and pince-nez.  The less friendly rabbit has trousers, shirt, and loose tie.  The hare laughs as we start the story, and the tortoise and friends laugh as we finish it. The hare seems at least to begin resting twice.  Perhaps the best of the colorful but simple illustrations has the hare wake up to see the tortoise approaching the finishing line.  The winner gets to eat as much cabbage (lettuce?) as he wants.

2006 Las Mejores Fábulas: Esopo, Jean de la Fontaine, Tomás de Iriarte, Félix María de Samaniego. Introduction by Rosario de la Iglesia. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Madrid, Spain: Clásicos Inolvidables: Edimat Libros, S.A. $13.90 from Redline Distributing and Entertainment, Indianapolis, IN, through eBay, Oct., '08.

This is a serious hardbound book of some 309 pages. It contains many texts and no illustrations. The T of C at the back gives the basic organization but with one glaring error. The organization is by author. The book moves through the fables of Aesop, then those of La Fontaine, thirdly those of Iriarte, and finally those of Samaniego. The glaring error is that it identifies the sections without identifying their authors. Thus the four sections are "Fábulas Completas," "Fábulas Escogidas," "Fábulas Literarias," and "Fábulas Morales." The reader needs to match the author with the section. Aesop and La Fontaine are rendered in Spanish prose. This book could prove a valuable source of texts. Rosario de la Iglesia's introduction is on 5-16.

2006 Le loup et l'agneau et 3 autres fables de La Fontaine. Illustrations de Sébastien Pelon. Paperbound. Paris: Des contes du monde entier: Flammarion: Père Castor. €3.78 from Amazon.fr, Sept., '11.

There are strong, simple illustrations in this landscape pamphlet 8¼" x 7". One of the best has the wolf at the end of WL picking a bone from his mouth, as a skeleton lies at his feet. In FC, the fox catches the dropping cheese in his hand/paw. In this visual version, the crow comes down onto the lawn to talk with the fox. On the following page, one sees him departing and then in the distance. The effect is very good. The bleak silhouette-heavy double-page spread at the end of GA tells a dire story. The frog at the end of OF does not explode. He simply disappears. Well done!

2006 Lektüre Latein: Phaedrus: Fabeln: Texte mit Anmerkungen und Zusatzmaterial. Bearbeitet von Helmut Offermann. Paperbound. Freising, Germany: Stark Verlagsgesellschaft. Gift of Franz Kuhn, August, '07.

Here is a handy small paperback for classroom use. It contains eleven Phaedrus fables with notes, assignment questions ("Arbeitsaufträge"), and illustrations. There are two more texts, taken from the prologue to Phaedrus' Book III, with interlinear translations and questions. "Lernvokabular" and "Literaturverzeichnis" close out the 62-page volume with a mosaic dog from Pompeii on its cover.

2006 Les Fables de La Fontaine. Illustrations: Christian Vandendaele. Hardbound. Paris: Les Éditions Pop Jeunesse: Éditions Caramel: Les Éditions Goélette. $14 from Marie Gervais, St.-Urbain-Premier, Quebec, Canada, through eBay, May, '12.

Pop Jeunesse keeps producing big, colorful, engaging fable books. This is a large book, 10" x 13", with 94 glossy pages. The book is in very good condition. Forty-five La Fontaine fables are well illustrated here. Among the more distinctive visual renditions are "Le Montagne qui accouche" (16-17); OR (28-29); "Le Corbeau voulant imiter l'Aigle" (36-37); "Le Paon se plaignant à Junon" (44-45); TT (54-55); UP (72-73); and "Le Rat qui s'est retiré du monde" (78-79). There is a T of C at the very end. TT gets a special prize for the surprised turtle's facial expression as he floats down!

2006 Les Fables du Renard/Fox Fables.  Retold by Dawn Casey.  French translation by Annie Arnold.  Illustrated by Jago.  Paperbound.  London: Mantra Lingua Ltd.  $15 from Better World Books, July, '12.

This is a large, handsome, landscape-formatted book of 32 pages presenting two fables bilingually.  It belongs to a series, of which I now have five, including Arabic, Urdu, Swahili, and Polish.  The series presents the two fables of this book by pairing English with a number of different languages, one for each book.  FS is visually splendid!  The size of the book allows Jago to create impressive illustrations like that of the crane unable to slurp up soup as well as three detailed specific views of her attempts.  Casey has the crane thank the fox for his kindness politely and add: "Please let me repay you -- come to dinner at my house."  The page after the story lists activities: writing, art, "maths," storytelling, and music.  The second story here is "King of the Forest," and it is labelled a Chinese fable.  Tiger comes upon fox and frightens him.  In desperation, fox claims that he is king of the forest.  Tiger roars with laughter.  Fox answers that he will show tiger.  "This I've got to see," tiger says.  Fox gets tiger to walk behind him.  Of course, every animal upon whom these two come runs away in respect.  Tiger is fooled and pays his respects to the king of the forest.  Fox bids him be gone and then, on the way home, has a good laugh over the whole ploy.

2006 Les plus jolies Fables d'Ésope. Racontées par Saviour Pirotta. Illustrées par Richard Johnson. Hardbound. Boston: Rouge & Or. €6 from Antiquariat Wirthwein, Mannheim, August, '09.

Here is the French version of a book first published by Kingfisher in Great Britain and Houghton Mifflin in the USA, both in 2005. Except for the French language, a publication date one year later, and the lack of a dust-jacket, this book is identical with that. Let me repeat comments I made on the English edition. This is a good book! Each of the eight fables gives an autobiographical Sitz im Leben for Aesop's telling of the story. For example, the foolhardy plans of his fellow slave-boy friends for running away and becoming pirates are a prelude to Aesop's telling them BC. The book has warm, colorful contemporary illustrations. LM (14) is particularly well told. GGE (36) is presented with an unusual turn: the riches from earlier golden eggs vanish when the goose is killed. An unusual situation explains the first invitation in FS (50): the fox owed the deer a favor, who happened to be with the stork while the fox was cooking up some recently stolen food. When invited, the deer said that she could not make it, but recommended that the stork take her place.

2006 Lisie bajki/Fox Fables. Retold by Dawn Casey/Polish translation by Jolanta Starek-Corile. Illustrated by Jago. Paperbound. London: Mantra Lingua Ltd. $14.94 from Better World Books, July, '12.

This is a large, handsome, landscape-formatted book of 32 pages presenting two fables bilingually. It belongs to a series, of which I now have four. The series presents the two fables of this book by pairing English with a number of different languages, one for each book. FS is visually splendid! The size of the book allows Jago to create impressive illustrations like that of the crane unable to slurp up soup as well as three detailed specific views of her attempts. Casey has the crane thank the fox for his kindness politely and add: "Please let me repay you -- come to dinner at my house." The page after the story lists activities: writing, art, "maths," storytelling, and music. The second story here is "King of the Forest," and it is labelled a Chinese fable. Tiger comes upon fox and frightens him. In desperation, fox claims that he is king of the forest. Tiger roars with laughter. Fox answers that he will show tiger. "This I've got to see," tiger says. Fox gets tiger to walk behind him. Of course, every animal upon whom these two come runs away in respect. Tiger is fooled and pays his respects to the king of the forest. Fox bids him be gone and then, on the way home, has a good laugh over the whole ploy. This story is also strongly illustrated. This copy apparently belonged to Salford Public Library in greater Manchester, England. 

2006 Mes toutes premières Fables de La Fontaine. Illustrations d'Olivia Cosneau. Hardbound. Champigny-sur-Marne: Éditions Lito. €10 from Amazon.fr, Dec., '11.

This book is almost identical with another, published by the same publisher in 2010. This one has a slightly smaller footprint: about 8" x 8⅛" as opposed to the later book's footprint of 9" x 9¼". This book uses the title-page of that one not only for its title-page but also for its cover. The cover of the other later book has a large round hole, allowing the viewer to see through to a child, a fox and a crow. As I mention there, the book offers five fables, presented with their full La Fontaine texts and pictures adapted to very young children. One special feature of this book in either version is the variety of materials used in the illustrations. Again here, they sound wonderfully exotic in French: feutrine, feutrine peinte, tissus imprimés, fourrure synthétique, maille tricotée, madras, raphia, fil à canevas, fil à coudre…. The fables presented here are FC, GA, LM, AD, and OF. Those wanting a good sampling of the illustration style might want to look first in AD.

2006 Outfoxing Fear: Folktales from Around the World.  Kathleen Ragan.  Introduction by Jack Zipes.  First printing.  Paperbound.  NY: W.W. Norton.  $7.98 from Powell's, Portland, July, '15.

This book is written in the wake of 9/11.  It offers lots of helpful story perspectives on dealing with fear in a frightening world.  I am happy that several fables make their way into this collection.  I may have missed others, but I see these at work here.  "The Frightened Fox" (29) is a clever story.  They are rounding up camels.  The fox knows enough to be afraid.  The mob could well take him for a camel!  "The Snail" gets across the road in seven years.  Just as he makes it across, a tree falls and just misses him.  "It's good to be fast," he says (62).  "The Fox and Her Children and Nekhailo the Loafer" is a variation of the Aesopic "Lark and Her Children" (80).  Young foxes hear Nekhailo notice that the grass needs weeding.  Mother answers "Don't be afraid."  Nekhailo returns after a long time; the grass has grown tall.  "I'll come back with a scythe."  "Don't be afraid."  Three months later comes with a scythe, but the grass is so thick that he cannot cut it down.  "I'll go get some matches and burn it."  "Come, children, now we'd better run away!" (80).  "The Lion Who Drowned in a Well" (82) and "The Tiger, the Brahman, and the Jackal" (86) are familiar fables.  "Ole Sis Goose" (104) takes the attacking fox to the courthouse, but the judge, the sheriff, the attorneys, and the jury all are foxes!  Guess who wins the trial!  "The Landlord and His Son" (130) does indeed illustrate that "Wer anderen eine Grube gräbt, fällt selbst hinein."  "The Good Lie" (217) tells a good story of just that: a vizier translates a foreign captive's outburst as a verse from the Koran praising compassion -- and the captive is spared.  Another counselor speaks up to say "He lied."  The king says he prefers the first vizier's lie to the second vizier's truth: it brought a good action.  Ragan adds a touching last chapter: "Sunrise Never Failed Us Yet."  For something totally different, try "De White Man's Prayer" (75).

2006 Spitting on Ghosts: Fables and Fairy Tales from Early China. Brian Bruya, translator. Illustrations by Tsai Chih Chung. First edition? Paperbound. Traditional Chinese Culture Series: Modern Publishing House. $7.99 from Yuxiaochuan, Shahekou, China, through eBay, Oct., '12.

A glimpse through this engaging booklet suggests that it is not a fable book in the sense I follow. The book's stories seem heavy on ghosts, magic, and transformations. Its format is engaging. The left and right page edges cut into a section of blue text in large characters. Might this be a title? Next to this is apparently the fuller text. Cartoon panels are numbered and move down one page before going across to the facing page. There is a system of chapter headings and story titles that confuses me. No chapter has more than one subheading. Some chapters have no subheading. There are nineteen stories on 120 pages. Typos occur, as in the third panel overall: "Ghosts don't exits!" This story itself is on the borderline, I would say. A man disproves the existence of ghosts by asking the apparently irrefutable question: "Do ghosts' clothes have ghosts too?" Apparently those who saw ghosts saw them clothed. One day a man comes by to talk philosophy, gets into an argument over ghosts, and then scares the wits out of our man by revealing that he, the visitor, is a ghost. "Do not trust to your limited knowledge" is the story's lesson. The second story raises a question not much at home in the fable world: If one's mother turns into a turtle and swims away, should one give a funeral for her? In the third story, a man makes love to a woman he happens to meet and gives her a bell as a memento. He follows her the next morning to a house, and here he learns that there is no woman in this house, only a pig. He finds the pig wearing a bell. That story stopped my reading! Tsai Chih Chung is apparently a very popular comic book artist. The seller's information lists the book as a first edition from 2005, even though I see on the final page dates of 2006 and 2007. My suspicion is that the book is copyrighted in 2005 and has a first printing in 2006 and a second printing in 2007. In fact, in his detailed description, the seller gives 2006 as the book's date. The advertisement claims that "the book includes over 100 fabulous tales." 

2006 The Adventures of Brer Rabbit and Friends: From Stories Collected by Joel Chandler Harris.  Retold by Karima Amin.  Illustrated by Eric Copeland.  Third printing.  Paperbound.  London: Dorling Kindersley Limited.  $4.95 from Powell's, Portland, August, '15.

This is a sturdy oversized paperback book of 64 highly colored, slick pages.  The cover shows Brer Rabbit with the fox, the raccoon, and Brer Mink.  The back cover has some text but also three great pictures: a race between tortoise and hare, storytelling with Karima Amin, and a discussion between the fox and the raccoon.  First published in hardback in 1999.  Ten stories are introduced with a map of Brer Rabbit's territory and succeeded by sections on "Tales from Africa"( 60) and "Meet the Animals" (62).  The ten are standard stories. Brer Rabbit loses his tail fishing with it in ice.  Brer Rabbit fools Brer Fox into leaving his bag of hunting prey behind while he goes back to pick up the "dead" rabbit in his path.  Tar-Baby.  Brer Rabbit coaxes Brer Fox to be his horse and rides him to the stork ladies' residence.  Running away from a fallen tree turns into a mass movement, fueled bu the line "Got no time to tarry."  Brer Rabbit knows it was a tree falling, but the others assume something far worse.  Brer Terrapin vs. Brer Rabbit in a race.  This versiion uses several of Brer Terrapin's family members to fool Brer Rabbit; for once he meets his match!  In his next prank, Brer Rabbit breaks into Brer Bear's home.  Snooping around, he happens to tip a pot of honey onto himself and cannot get it off.  In this fix, he encounters Brer Fox and Brer Wolf plotting on the road.  He actually manages to scare them!  Brer Weasel is good at stealing butter from the common store.  He outwits sixf locals set up as guards of the butter, one after another.  Brer Weasel captures him by suggesting a tug-of-war that has them both tied up.  Brer Rabbit ties his end to a tree, and Brer Weasel is caught.  Brer Possum comes across Brer Snake in a hole: should he save him?  Brer Snake gets Brer Possum to put him into his pocket, to "warm up."  Brer Possum, before he dies, asks to say good-bye to Brer Rabbit.  Brer Rabbit gets him back into his original position, pinned in a hole.  In the last story, Brer Rabbit sets others to the task of netting up  the moon out of the water of the mill pond.  Good, traditional stories!

2006 The Bat, the Birds, and the Beasts. Wonju Kwon and Matthew E. Benton. Illustrated by Seongyeong Park. Hardbound. Gyeonggi-do, South Korea: World Famous Stories for Children #5: Butter English Press. $5 from Jeremy Weiss, Sleepy Hollow, NY, through eBay, July, '11.

This large-format book tells apparently the same story of the bat's wishy-washy involvement in the battle of the birds and the beasts in two directions, English and Korean, starting from the two outsides of the book. The English version has good symbols for the characters speaking. At the book's center is an English chant: "The birds are winning. I am a bird. The animals are winning. I am an animal…." There are also several pages of Korean exercises on the story. Of the fifty books in this series, it looks as though #8 (TH), #11 (GGE), and #25 (BF) are also fables. So far I cannot find a way to get them. A Lisa Kelley introduces the book and the series on the first page.

2006 The Boy Who Cried Wolf. Retold by B.G. Hennessy. Illustrated by Boris Kulikov. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. $11.55 from Amazon.com, May, '11.

This is a wonderfully creative rendition of BW! The fun starts with a dynamic cover showing the boy running. As it turns out, he is running to town. But that move will come only in the middle of this lively book. The title-illustration shows the same run from the rear, together with a perplexed sheep munching. By a few pages into the story, the boy is picking his nose in boredom while the sheep munch. He teaches the sheep some tricks but they are not interested. Notice the amazed long-nosed bird who wonders what is happening as the boy seems to wander blindfolded off the edge of a cliff! When the "run to town" scene gets shown a third time, there is a young lamb with a dandelion in her mouth looking perplexed at the reader. The crowd that comes rushing out of town is a fine group, including a knight, a priest, and a man brandishing an umbrella! The next day the boy runs to town to announce two wolves! This time Kulikov cleverly presents the stampede of the crowd from ground level. The third day the boy hears not the munching of sheep but the growling of three wolves and again runs into town. No one believes him this time, and the boy spends the rest of the day looknig for his sheep. As the last page indicates, they are smart enough to perch in the branches of a tree. What fun!

2006 The Buddha's Journey Home: New Buddhist Fables. Robert W. Long. Various artists. Second edition. Paperbound. : Lulu Publications. See 2005/6.

2006 The Complete Comic Panchatantra.  Retold and Illustrated by Bujjai.  Retold and Illustrated by Bujjai (Devulapalli Subbaraya Sastri).  Paperbound.  Chennai, India: Rain Tree.  195 Rupies from Children Book Centre, Kolkata, Dec., '14.

My reading of most of the first of the five books suggests that this book's claim to be a complete Panchatantra in comics is valid.  Not all of the stories in the first book have all the wit that they can have.  For example, the jackal knows drums but still thinks that there must be great food inside this one.  In Ramsay Wood's version, I think it is the loudness of the sound that suggests that there must be significant innards in this unknown "animal."  The Dimna character here is more explicitly devious and gives out his plans beforehand more than the Dimna in Wood's version.  The story of regulated sacrifice to the lion lacks some of the complexity of Wood's version, like viewing the "cousin rabbit" in the well's water-mirror.  The cartoon work is fine, however, and it is great to have an accessible visual version of the Panchatantra.  9¼" x 12½".

2006 The Fables of La Fontaine. Translated by C.J. Moore. Illustrated by Jean-Noël Rochut. Hardbound. Edinburgh: Floris Books. $19.80 from Amazon.com, Jan., '09.

Here is a serious La Fontaine edition of selected fables comprising some 112 fables on 218 pages. Moore's introduction offers more than introductions usually do about both La Fontaine and this translation. La Fontaine produced "terse verse," notedly elegant, compressed, and wittily didactic. Moore looks seriously at the translations of Elizur Wright in 1841 and Walter Thornbury around 1868. He finds both tending to be "very literary" and thus inappropriate for today, especially as they follow their own meter and verse forms. Curiously, Moore does not mention Marianne Moore's 1954 translation or the recent spate of translations including James Michie (1979), Norman Spector (1988), or Norman Shapiro (1985, 1998, and 2000). In fact, Shapiro has now done a complete La Fontaine that appeared one year after this present volume of Moore's. The intent of this volume is to offer a La Fontaine as simple as possible for a readership unacquainted with the seventeenth-century background. "While a number of selections of fables have been translated in recent years, many in limited editions, I am not aware of any other single volume in modern English, with colour illustrations, on the scale of the present book for a general market, and hope this will prove a new opportunity for children and adults alike to become familiar with these delightful works." (17). FC (32) is, I would say, a good specimen of success, as is 2P on 38. The illustration for TT (53) is particularly good. Less happy might be the first lines of TH: "Running is not the way to win a race./He wins who starts from the best place." La Fontaine's point is rather that starting is the important thing: "il faut partir a point." The illustrations seem to me enjoyable but not inspired; facing illustrations often give a "before" and "after" from the same fable. The best of the illustrations are specific, like the two for "The Oyster and the Claimants" (114-115); unfortunately, a number of illustrations are generic, like the background for "The Boy and the Schoolmaster" (118-119). Similar backgrounds are repeated, e.g. 136-7, 146-7, 172-3, and 196-7. There is a T of C at the front and an AI at the back.

2006 The Goose that laid the Golden Eggs Based on the fable by Aesop. Retold by Mairi Mackinnon. Illustrated by Daniel Howarth. Hardbound. London: Usborne First Reading: Usborne Publishing Ltd. $8.99 from Amazon.com, May, '09.

This book is a fellow member with The Hare and the Tortoise Based on a Story by Aesop from 2007 in Usborne's "First Reading" series. Like it, it is a sturdy book, about 8" x 5", containing 48 pages. This telling dramatizes Tom's emotions when he finds what he thinks is a stone left in place of a stolen egg. When the goldsmith in town pays him a great deal of money for it, he buys Elena a dress, but she says that they need to fix the roof. The next day's egg takes care of that. Soon they have a new house and servants working their garden, and they are rich. But they want more. Elena has the key thought: "The little white goose must be full of gold." Is it believable that killing the goose returns them to their former poverty? The last few pages offer a description of fables that sets up for this story's moral: "Don't be greedy or you might lose everything." The book has a ribbon to help keep one's place in the story.

2006 The Hare and the Tortoise and other Fables of La Fontaine. Translated by Ranjit Bolt. Illustrated by Giselle Potter. First printing. Dust jacket. Hardbound. Cambridge, MA: Barefoot Books. $12.43 from Buy.com through eBay, May, '08.

The flyleaf speaks of Ranjit Bolt as an award-winning translator. Nineteen fables, with an introduction and an afterword. The illustration style is primitive. Bolt's introduction closes with this good paragraph: "When they travel from country to country, century to century, and translator to translator, fables change in the process. I am happy to have joined such a long history of translators with this version of the fables, and I hope you enjoy reading them and choosing your favorites. Perhaps you will even make up some of your own!" (7). This introduction is well illustrated with a king at the bottom of the two pages receiving a long scroll from the bill of a crow at the pages' top. About half the fables take two pages to tell; the others take four. TH is true to La Fontaine in having the hare spurn a hollow victory. "Although it was a record run,/The tortoise had already won" (11). I think that I never understood "The Man and the Mirrors" before, but I understand it well now. Other people reflect back our faults to us. We can avoid other people and their reflection, but then even a stream will reflect our image. And what is that stream? These fables! I appreciate the consistent sense that these translations with their rhyming couplets make. LM features a "rather reckless rat" (32)! In FK, Jove "sent a moving king -- a crane/That liked to kill and crunch and munch/Ten frogs with tea and ten for lunch" (36-37). Generally, I find La Fontaine's order of the men's encounters in MSA not helping the fable, but Bolt's telling of this fable (44-47) is among the best I have seen. The best illustrations may be the most complex, like DW (18-19), "The Farmer and His Sons" (30-31), and "The Rat and the Elephant" (50-51). This copy came with a postcard describing the mission of Barefoot Books. Its illustration is a detail from TMCM.

2006 The Hare and the Tortoise: La Liebre y la Tortuga. Adaptation by Maria Eulàlia Valeri. Illustrated by Max. Paperbound. San Francisco: Chronicle Books. $5.99 from Buy.com through eBay, June, '08.

Originally published in Catalan in 1993 by La Galera S.A. Editorial. This is a nicely constructed children's pamphlet of some thirty-two pages. Notice the differing silhouettes of the two characters on the early and late green pages that flank the story. There are several unusual twists within this version. The prize is a huge cabbage just outside the town to which the two are racing. The hare here stops to eat and then runs on. He then stops to drink and falls asleep. He wakes up as the tortoise passes him. Then, in an unprecedented development, the hare spends the night having dinner and sleeping with relatives. He begins again only in the morning. This seems to be the only fable in the series, advertised near the end of the booket and again on the back cover.

2006 The Hare and the Tortoise Sticker Storybook.  Text: Jonathan Stroud.  Illustrations: Caroline Jayne Church.  Paperbound.  London: Walker Books.  See 1998/2006.

2006 The Illustrated Book of Aesop's Fables. Illustrated by Germano Ovani, Simona Bucan, Daniela Pellegrini, and Manuela Cenci. First printing. Dust jacket. Hardbound. Hauppauge, NY: Barron's Educational Series, Inc.. $12.91 from amazon.com, Feb., '07.

This is the English version of "Fabuloso Esopo" (2005) by Parramón Ediciones in Barcelona. Its design is quite original. It groups seven fables under each of four animals: fox, wolf, eagle, and lion. There is an opening T of C presenting these four sections. Then each section has its own T of C with page numbers along a circuitous route traveled by that section's main character. The fables receive four pages each. Almost every page includes some illustration. The morals tend to be simple and upbuilding. Thus for "A Fox and a Woodcutter," we read "We must be sincere in both what we say and what we do. We should not do what the woodcutter did, say one thing and do the opposite" (15). Is the fox in the picture on 13 "shushing" the woodcutter? Ovani's best illustration for the foxes might be 24's goat on the rim of the well already containing the fox. Simona Bucan creates plastic landscapes for the wolf fables. Her illustrations for WL may be the best (39-41). Her method also serves her well for the illustrations of "A Wolf and a Lion" (58-61). Some of the written versions of the fables are careless, I believe. Thus "An Eagle and a Turtle" (68-71) does not resolve the motivation of the eagle and keeps, for no apparent reason, the reference to the riches of the Red Sea. It also gives two morals: "It is not good for us to desire something that we can never hope to achieve. And also, if we get all we want too easily, sooner or later we will usually be sadly disappointed." Pellegrini's style may be the most primitive. Her best work shows the crow who tried to act like an eagle being given to the shepherd's children (78-79). The color "cells" are deliberately presented here. The book offers the fable about the eagle that is advised by a fox not to reward his benefactor but to placate his enslaver (84-7). In this version, the eagle does not follow the fox's advice. The moral asks us to reward those good to us; it urges us not to listen to those who advise differently. I think Aesop gets lost in this book's urge to teach children "niceness." For me, Cenci's lion illustrations are the most impressive. Her cover-picture of the lion and mosquito (also on 110) is the book's strongest image. I for one get confused by the moral here of the always-difficult fable about the rabbit's proclamation of the great day of peace. "The hare thought--and she was right--that she and all the other humbler animals can live in peace where justice reigns, but common sense made her cautious, and thus she did not want to stay too near" (120). What? There is a short biography for each of the illustrators following 125.

2006 The Legendary Life and Fables of Aesop.  Now once again edited by Mayvis Anthony.  With the life of Aesop illustrated by Mary Anne Miller and the fables illustrated by Grace Freed Muscarella.  First edition.  Paperbound.  Toronto: Mayant Press.  $25 from Amazon.com: Stork Group, Feb., '14.  

I am surprised and happy to find a new translation of Aesop into English prose.  It is also nice to see Grace Muscarella's delightful designs back.  One thinks one is reading Lloyd Daly again!  The book offers 126 fables.  I can find no obvious principle of organization, and there is neither an AI nor a T of CI.  There is a helpful list of morals separated at the back, as in Daly's book.  I read the first five fables and find them well told.  New here are not only the version of the life and the versions of the fables but the illustrations for the life.  At least in this printing, they come out quite sketchy.  Still, it helps the reading of the life.  Anthony's preface is careless in its history.  Was Demetrius Phalareus a philosopher?  Did Babrius "bring together" Demetrius Phalareus and Phaedrus?  Steinhoewel (not "Stainhowel") published in 1476, not 1480.  She expresses gratitude to Caxton, Townsend, Jacobs, and Daly.  What she has to say, especially on xi, concerning the contribution of fables today is very well put.  "Perhaps their appeal lies in their ability, in a world that is changing so fast, to lure us back to our ancient roots -- to a time of innocence when stories were told to bring morals across in a simple, graceful and humorous style.  As such, these fables will always find a special place in us and in the hearts of children.  They can remind us that we all are partakers of this rich heritage and that though our surroundings may change, human nature does not change, and we are all connected as members of the same human race from the beginning of time."

2006 The Life of Aesop. By Benny Thomas. Illustrated by Benny Thomas. Inscribed by Benny Thomas, July, 2006. First edition. Paperbound. Lulu Publishing. Gift of Benny Thomas, Ijlst, Netherlands, July, '06.

Here is an engaging, imaginative approach to the life of Aesop in a paperback book of some 230 pages. There is a T of C at the beginning and a chronology at the end. Unfortunately, the page numbers do not appear on the pages themselves. There are twelve chapters tracking Aesop from his childhood to his death. The chapters are organized within three parts. Each part has a prologue. The key to the work is given in the preface. Thomas first correctly assesses the present situation: "Very little is known of his life and the present book, I hope, shall to some extent satisfy that lacuna." His method he makes clear soon after: "Where facts are missing I have papered over the gaps with a higher truth." For Thomas, Aesop "is a symbol for everyman." Thomas himself aptly proclaims "This is a work of imagination." I concur, and I have enjoyed watching Benny's imagination at work. The experience is helped by the black-and-white illustrations along the way. I am delighted to have received a copy of this book! Cataloguing this book has made me aware of Lulu Publishing. One can purchase an online version of this book as well as the physical book from Lulu.

2006 The Red Rock: A Graphic Fable. Tomio Nitto. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Toronto/Berkeley: Groundwood Books: House of Anansi Press. $3.98 from Better World Books, May, '12.

This is a single story of a beaver and a young girl who each do what they can to stop the ruining of a lively and lovely habitat for financial gain. Old Beaver looks out over the terrain he has worked for a lifetime, including the red rock. The red rock is a huge and weird old rock that had always been there. At the same time, developers are planning to cut down the timber and turn the whole area into financial productivity: damns, cruise ships, luxury hotels, night lights, hot springs. Part of the height of the arrogance of the evil developers is that they want to carve the red rock into a face of the developer! A young girl hears about this development on TV and gets worried. Trees start coming down. The animals and the girl do what they can, but it seems little against the great corporations and their huge machines. Then at midnight a bolt zaps out from the red rock. In comic book panels, the bolt makes the beaver into a super-beaver who confronts developers and shows them the loss of natural life they are causing. In a pitched battle, the beaver knocks the teeth out of greed. Finally he and the developer agree and construction stops. Things grow again. The "supernatural" element of the story is fascinating. Old Beaver himself "wasn't really sure how the forest had been saved." He asks the red rock one day if maybe he dreamed the whole thing. "The red rock didn't say a word, as usual." "The animals learned what Old Beaver and the little girl and the red rock had always known -- that you have to fight to defend this beautiful world." 

2006 The Tortoise and the Hare & the Lion and the Mouse: Adapted from Aesop's Fables. By Charnan Simon. Illustrated by Omar Rayyan. First printing. Hardbound. Greensboro, NC: Do-Re-Me & You!: Kindermusik International. $7 from Chuck Wolfe through eBay, April, '08.

Here is a creative effort spreading into new directions. The two stories are well done. Eventually the other animals refuse to race Hare. Cocky Hare proclaims "But I love to race! Racing is what I do best! One of you should race me!" Tortoise, when Hare laughs at his offer, responds "I know I'm slow. So what do I have to lose? I'm the only one you haven't raced--and I just might surprise you!" Hare rests near the goal line at the stream. After the race, Hare proves to be a good loser. LM is similarly well told. The picture of the laughing lion may be the best, and it is well echoed by the laughing of the other lions when he returns to the pride. The book's special gifts go in two directions. First, each of the three pages of either story folds out. The pages themselves are more like thin plastic than paper. The foldout is there to receive any of the twenty-nine stickers of animals in various poses and positions. The scenes are well conceived for arrangement of the figures: three portions of the path in TH and various parts of the savannah for LM. The folding work on the foldout pages is particularly good. Each time, the foldover picture is perfectly integrated with the scene it covers. Secondly, there is a fine CD that comes with the book. TH has three segments of narration punctuated by three songs. The musical work is good, from orchestral backup to animals' voices. LM's spoken narrative is especially fine for the mouse's responses to the lion's statements. Again, there are three songs.

2006 The Tortoise and the Hare Race Again. By Dan Bernstein. Illustrated by Andrew Glass. First edition, first printing. Dust jacket. Hardbound. NY: Holiday House. Gift of Vera Ruotolo, August, '06.

Even his mother mocks the hare for having lost to the tortoise--"by a hair" as the text says. Since that day, none of the rabbits have had nice things to say to the hare. "Even Hare E. Podder, the oldest slowest rabbit in the village, believed he could have won The Great Race." The tortoise has had his own problems since that day, despite writing "My Hare-Racing Experience." Both runners want a rematch. The hare shows up for the race wearing a necklace of clocks, including of course alarm-clocks. When the hare naps again--twice this time--the tortoise is ready. He climbs into his motorized bunny-suit he has in his backpack. He roars to the finish line as the hare, and then quickly retires from the action. After the race, the hare, who cannot remember winning and who actually slept until the next noon, declares that it was not just a hare they saw out there in the race. "That was a machine!" As the last page nicely declares, "The hare never found out how right he was." Fun! The illustrations fit the light-hearted tone of this book. Good word-play. Good imagination!

2006 The Tortoise and the Hare Race Again. By Dan Bernstein. Illustrated by Andrew Glass. Second printing. Paperbound. NY: Holiday House. $4.95 from Powell's, Portland, August, '08.

Here is the paperback version of a great book I was given two years ago. I will include my comments from there. Even his mother mocks the hare for having lost to the tortoise--"by a hair" as the text says. Since that day, none of the rabbits have had nice things to say to the hare. "Even Hare E. Podder, the oldest slowest rabbit in the village, believed HE could have won The Great Race." The tortoise has had his own problems since that day, despite writing "My Hare-Racing Experience." Both runners want a rematch. The hare shows up for the race wearing a necklace of clocks, including of course alarm-clocks. When the hare naps again--twice this time--the tortoise is ready. He climbs into his motorized bunny-suit he has in his backpack. He roars to the finish line as the hare, and then quickly retires from the action. After the race, the hare, who cannot remember winning and who actually slept until the next noon, declares that it was not just a hare they saw out there in the race. "That was a MACHINE!" As the last page nicely declares, "The hare never found out how right he was." Fun! The illustrations fit the light-hearted tone of this book. Good word-play. Good imagination!

2006 The Wedding of the Mouse: An Asian Folktale.  Illustrated and Retold by Trish Williams.  First editiion.  Hardbound.  Glendale, WI: Playground Press LLC.  $2.95 from Book Shop, Sioux Falls, SD, Nov., '14.  

Mouse parents under a great pagoda have a beautiful daughter, Meili.  "Why, she is so special that only the greatest being on earth could possibly be worthy of her precious paw in marriage!"  So says her father.  One after another, the chosen candidates, starting with the sun, declare that they are not the greatest beings on earth.  The sun is followed, as is traditional in this story, by the cloud, the wind, the wall, and the mouse!  (Some versions will not mention the wall but will list a mountain and a tree at that point.)  Trish Williams has fun with the hyperactive mouse couple, especially the father mouse, with his pointed red nose and dark eyes.  When Meili hears the news, she says that she has just the right mouse in mind.  A fine children's story book!  The book presents the Williams' senior thesis at the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design.

2006 Vietnamese Fables of Frogs and Toads. Told and Edited by Masao Sakairi. Translated by Matthew Galgani. Illustrated by Shoko Kojima. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Berkeley, CA: Asian Folktales Retold: Heian: Stone Bridge Press. $10.53 from Buy.com, June, '08.

Originally published in 2001 in Japan by Hoshinowakai. There are two folktales in this large-format book of 32 pages. "The Frog Bride" is a "happily ever after" story of the transformation of a beloved frog into a woman. The man who has married the frog is teased by his fellow students. After passing tests of cooking and sewing, the frog must appear at a party, and the husband fears being shamed for having married a frog. On the way to the party, she goes into the woods and sheds her frog skin. The man destroys it. As she tells him, "Because you're such a good man, God gave you a wife. And because I met such a kind man, I was allowed to become a woman again" (12). The second folktale, "The Toad Who Brought the Rain," explains why frogs croak before it rains. After a long drought, a desperate toad on his way to ask the gods for rain gathers a whole troop of animals. With their specific skills, these animals overcome the God of Lightning and bring the Chief God to grant their request for rain. From now on, this god stipulates to the toad, if there are dry days, the toad should come close to the heavens and by croaking remind the Chief God to make rain. Kojima's illustrations are enjoyable. Often they are suggestive designs. Those designs complement more realistic presentations, e.g., of the frog turned into a woman on 13 or of the animals collected along the way.

2006/11 Aesop's Fables. Translated by Wuli Li Yuliang. Illustrator NA. Paperbound. Beijing: Spring Series: Hebei Education Publishing Press. $9.99 from peiyantu, Hangzhou, China, through eBay, Sept., '11.

The flow of inexpensive Chinese bilingual fable editions continues with this book, apparently reprinted in 2011 after its first publication in 2006. The cover features a cartoon medallion of a wolf in sheep's clothing. Inside there are four chapters, marked on the page edge by the appropriate number of spades out of four. I have not yet seen through the organization of those four chapters. Within them, fables are presented, no more than one to a page, with the Chinese translation generally on the right-hand page facing the English on the left. Sometimes the Chinese is below the English on the same page. Each fable has at least one illustration, generally generic and poorly rendered, in one or two colors. There is a "Comprehension Check" at the end of each chapter, and a quiz on 126-127, followed by an English-to-Chinese word-list. The fables chosen seem to be standards from the Aesopic canon. I cannot find a more comprehensive T of C than the chapter-list on 3.

2006/12 Fox Fables.  Retold by Dawn Casey/Arabic translation by Wafa' Tarnowska.  Illustrated by Jago.  Paperbound.  London: Mantra Lingua Ltd.  $18.40 from Better World Books, Jan., '14.

Here is a second good copy of this paperbound book, this one a 2012 edition..  The only changes from the 2006 edition are the date of the edition on the last page and several changes on the back cover.  There the first three paragraphs have the same text but are differently formatted.  It seems that several languages have been dropped, including Albanian and Croatian.  Mandarin seems to have been added.  Has the ISBN's last digit changed from a 7 to a 6?  I wrote the following then:  This is a large, handsome, landscape-formatted book of 32 pages presenting two fables bilingually.  It belongs to a series.  The back cover's explanations do not make totally clear whether there is one portion of the series that presents many different fables.  It does make clear that a portion of the series presents the two fables of this book by pairing English with a number of different languages, one for each book.  FC is visually splendid!  The size of the book allows Jago to create impressive illustrations like that of the crane unable to slurp up soup as well as three detailed specific views of her attempts.  Casey has the crane thank the fox for his kindness politely and add: "Please let me repay you -- come to dinner at my house."  The page after the story lists activities: writing, art, "maths," storytelling, and music.  The second story here is "King of the Forest," and it is labelled a Chinese fable.  Tiger comes upon fox and frightens him.  In desperation, fox claims that he is king of the forest.  Tiger roars with laughter.  Fox answers that he will show tiger.  "This I've got to see," tiger says.  Fox gets tiger to walk behind him.  Of course, every animal upon whom these two come runs away in respect.  Tiger is fooled and pays his respects to the king of the forest.  Fox bids him be gone and then, on the way home, has a good laugh over the whole ploy.  This story is also strongly illustrated.

2006? Aesop's Fable of The Miller, His Son and Their Ass. Retold and Illustrated with Original Linoleum Cuts by Nick Wonham. Signed by Wonham. #92 of 160. Hardbound. Oldham, England: Incline Press. $125 from Bartleby's Books, Georgetown, Washington, D.C. Jan., '11.

Here is a gorgeous private-press book that I happened upon during a New Year's visit to Bartleby's. The book's format is huge: 15" x 11½." The story is well told. The miller's repeated refrain is "They are right!" The son is put onto the ass first. The son's bowl-like cap is always just over his eyes. An intriguing illustration comes as the miller puts his son with him onto the ass. Is that a child climbing onto a grown-up? The final admonition comes from a rich traveler on horse back passing them in the same direction as they approach town: "Are you planning to sell that poor beast at market? Because if you are, you would be better off carrying it!" And carry it they do, with no help from a pole. The farmer gets his arms around the ass's belly, and the son seems to have his head supporting the ass' rump. The fine illustration of the ass' fall seems to me to derive largely from Tenniel's inspiration. "By trying to please all, he had pleased none, and lost his Ass as well!" Still, the last illustration has the ass climbing out of the water onto a more inviting shore. The back cover shows the rich traveler just coming into view up the road. Lovely paper! Lovely book! I found the date of publication by checking into another copy available on the web. I am very lucky to have found this book!

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2007

2007 A Reading First Approach: Aesop's Fables Updated: 14 New Versions of Time-Honored Fables Partnered with the Researched Principles of Reading First. By Kathryn Wheeler. Illustrated by Julie Anderson. Paperbound. Minneapolis: A Reading First Approach: Key Education Publishing Company. $9.94 from Your Teacher Resource Source, Madera, CA, through eBay, Oct., '07.

This 8½" x 11" book has a busy cover. It identifies Grades 1 through 3 as the target; proclaims "Fables are natural links for building character education"; and shows a variety of characters, including wolf, dog, mouse, frog doctor, and butterfly. Near its bottom the cover has this text: "Includes peer reading; humorous and repetitive dialogue; all fables written at a 0.5 to 2.0 grade level; phonological awareness; activities that connect the fables with math, art, science, and social studies." Phew! Each of the fourteen fables has a section before and after it. The section before is the "Teacher's Page" with various activities to do before and after reading the story. After each fable come questions to help students' reading and understanding. The titles are helpful and show a good contemporary pointing of the fable. Thus the first three are titled "Baby Mouse Sees the World," "The Donkey Changes Jobs," and "A Well of Trouble." This book represents a fine selection of fables for children in the early grades. Well done!

2007 Aesop in Goudy. George Fyler Townsend. Illustrations by Brendan W. Cornwell. Stated first edition. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Portsmouth, NH: Blue Tree. $14.97 from White Elephant Media through eBay, August, '09.

Thirty fables presented by arranging Goudy Old Style typeface characters into the appropriate animals and other characters. The book combines, in Cornwell's words, "my love of clean, polished design with my passion for well-told stories" (7). This is a gorgeous book! Good samples for investigation are on 16-17: here bear and fox are cleverly contrived from letters and punctuation marks, while trees are green A's with H stumps. The cock's tail on the facing page is a fan of C's and his legs are built of capital I's. I particularly enjoy the tortoise plummetting to her death on 33 as a strange jumble of letters but still clearly a tortoise. DS's water on 34-35 is made up of a series of elongated blue capitals. 46-47 present a crowd of delightfully fashioned animals watching the monkey and camel dance. What fun! Do not miss Cornwell's self-portrait -- in Goudy, of course! -- on the back flyleaf.

2007 Aesopica.  Ben Edwin Perry.  First printing of this edition.  Hardbound.  Urbana: University of Illinois Press.  Gift of Willis Regier, August, '15.  

Here is a wonderful gift of Willis Regier, retired Director of the University of Illinois Press and a fellow fable devotee.  This 2007 edition has a 2007 preface honoring Ben Edwin Perry.  It is as beautifully produced as the original 1952 volume -- and as treasured.  I look back now and notice that the original edition, which I was delighted to find at Black Oak Books in Berkeley in 1986, was book #206 in this collection.  If my calculations are correct, this edition is book #8215.  My original comment was curiously laconic: "Bigger margins and thicker paper than in the Arno reprint (1952/80).  Perfect condition.  A real find.  The standard work for textual comparison."  The book has been a bible to me over these thirty years since I first found it.

2007 Aesop's Fables. Retold and Illustrated by Teodora Sirko. First paperback edition. Paperbound. Copyright Teodora Sirko. $16.12 from bigrockmedia.com through buy.com, June, '08.

According to the statement on the back cover, fables try "to arise our admiration for noble and honorable behaviour." Arise? Fourteen fables in a large-format pamphlet of 8½" x 11". This may be the nicest privately published book I have. DLS has a good moral: "Fine clothes may disguise a fool, but silly words will give him away" (9). TMCM speaks of town mouse being invited by "his" country mouse cousin, but the art shows both wearing dresses. Is this computer generated art? It seems a fusion of several different styles. One of them includes highly defined glossy figures, especially in the foreground. Another includes backgrounds with less definition and strong two-dimensionality. Sirko uses the two-page spread for each fable well, often giving two phases of the fable a page each. There is a T of C at the front.

2007 Aesop's Fables (Chinese). Youfu Editing Department. Paperbound. Taibei: Classical Story: rzbook.com. 200 Yuan from Fi-Cheng Trading, Hangzhou, China, Oct., '10.

Here are thirty-nine fables, listed on an early T of C. Simple colored cartoons are integrated onto the page of text. Most of the stories here are recognizable easily as traditional fables. There is a fine leaping fox seen from straight-on and under on 35. The grasshopper is covered with snow on 62. Town mouse and country mouse run from a broom on 96. Page numbers include a repeated visual marker; the two are a tower taken from 42 and a bat taken from 46. 

2007 Aesop's Fables (Chinese). Arthur Rackham et al. Paperbound. Huhhot?: The Hax World Classics Library: Inner Mongolia (University) Press. $9.99 from Timothy Green, Chesterfield, MI, through eBay, Oct., '12.

Here is a well-stocked collection of fables printed on cheap paper and displaying a variety of illustrations and illustration styles. The backbone is Rackham, whom one finds on the cover and e.g., on 29, 31, 33, and 51. The apparent purpose of the book is to teach Chinese students English. A surprising phenomenon is the recurrence of pages like 33, which put together an illustration almost a full page in size and an English language title. Those titles seem to be the only English in the book. There is a T of C at the book's beginning. The book ends abruptly on 296. 

2007 Aesop's Fables with Scripture References. Compiled and Edited by Sheila Carroll; Translation by V.S. Vernon Jones. Arthur Rackham. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Mt. Pleasant, MI: Living Books Press. $26 from amazon.co , Jan., '11.

Here is a fascinating concept. Many of the fables in the Vernon Jones/Rackham edition are matched with some one or two scriptural phrases. I am not sure whether to rejoice or to cry! I regret that Rackham is represented here only in his black-and-whites. Some fables, like #91 and #92, find no scriptural parallel. Fables #95 through #99 find no scripture at all. The dust-jacket's cover-illustration presents a good example. It shows Rackham's delightful illustration of the quack-frog selling medicinal remedies. In the fable, #205, a smart fox calls out "You, a doctor! Why, how can you set up to heal others when you cannot even cure your own lame legs and blotched and wrinkled skin?" This edition then presents Mt 7:3: "And why do you look at the speck in your brother's eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye?" Surely, these two texts are dealing with the same issue. But are they not just as surely dealing in quite different contexts? The fable deals at a surface level with those who offer help for a price but show problems themselves. The scriptural challenge has to do with the deeper value-issue of offering criticism and being unable to criticize oneself. It is, on the one hand, good to have the two texts brought together. On the other hand, does not this procedure reduce everything to the same context? Is there any regard for the context or kind of statement made in each? I am not surprised that there is no scripture presented for #270, "Venus and the Cat." I will probably use this book and have severe questions about its methodology.

2007 Alphabetario Me ton Aisopo. Anastasia Tsiolia Koutrotse. Art by Angelos Komines. Paperbound. Rekos E.P.E.. AUD 9.50 from The Orange Beehive, Melbourne, Australia, Nov., '08.

This is a clever oversized pamphlet of some 24 pages. After a title-page it jumps right into the first of twenty-four fables, one to a page. Omega lands on the inside of the back-cover. On each page, the appropriate letter is displayed at the top and is highlighted throughout that page's text. The letter generally begins the name of one of the main animals in the fable for that letter and page. Thus the first fable is "Ho Aetos kai ho Georgos," the eagle and the farmer. The colors are strong; they seem air-brushed. My favorite illustration is of the mosquito, Kounoupi, on 11. He has his helmet and goggles on and is ready to dive-bomb the poor lion. Another great illustration has a wolf looking straight up, with fork and cooking pot in his two hands (21). Is he waiting for the dog on the roof to fall asleep and fall? I do not recognize the Jason story under "I" (10). This book is fun!

2007 Auntie Gloria's Barnyard Fables. By Gloria Barber. Edited by Sandy MacKay. Illustrated by Maria Iocoi. First US Edition. Paperbound. Gales Ferry, CT: Gloria Barber. $7.95 through eBay from Paula Jordan, Griswold, CT, who did the layout for this little book, March, '08.

The eBay description rightly claimed "This is a delightful book, written by first time published author Gloria Barber, at age 76. Stories include: Carrie the Cat, Ricky the Racoon, and Clarence the Dancing Billy Goat. Illustrations are sparse, imagination needed!" Landscape format, 54 pages, soft cover, spiral binding, 8½" x 5½. The first story puts the reader inside Carrie the Cat; she learns that it takes times for humans to understand. The second describes how young Ricky the Racoon, frightened by his own reflection, learns to have fun with it. There is a good illustration of this story's climactic fun on 36. In the last story, Clarence the Dancing Billy Goat meets lonesome young trumpet-playing Tommy, whose best friend has just moved away. They become good friends and team up at sunset: Clarence does his dance and Tommy plays his trumpet. Good times!

2007 Basni Esop Jean Lafonten. Hardbound. Moscow: Eksmo. $29.98 from Raigo Kirss, Kuressaare, Estonia, through eBay, June, '10.

Here is a simple hardback fable book combinining fables from Aesop and La Fontaine. There are 156 pages of fables and a T of C. No illustrations except a frontispiece illustration from Grandville's "Creatures" rather than his fables. On the cover is a colored illustration of a stag with great antlers. Aesop has some twenty fables, according to the T of C. I count some sixty-four fables from La Fontaine. 

2007 Caribbean Fables: Animal Stories from Guyana and the Antilles. Collected and narrated by Dorothy St. Aubyn. First edition. Paperbound. Trinidad: Paria Publishing Company Limited. $25.98 from Better World Books through eBay, Nov., '09.

The illustrations, the verso of the title-page tells us, first appeared in two calendars for 2005 and 2006, designed by Paria Publishing Company for Demerara Mutual Life Assurance Society Limited in Guyana. Unfortunately, it is hard to find out who created them. They are full-page, colored, simple, lively cartoon-like representations. Sometimes a part of the lively design will be repeated later in the story. The stories themselves are chatty and often aetiological, like "How the Dog got its cold Nose" (12). One of these, "Capouey and his two Wives" (14), describes how the Milky Way was formed as a barrier between two realms in either of which Capouey, the moon, has one wife. Usually a teller and an audience is identified. Perhaps the most striking of the illustrations portrays the old woman dealing with two crabs (19). This image has strong colors and images! The book has a curious habit of capitalizing in its titles only the nouns.

2007 Children's Classic Stories: Fairytales, fables & folktales.  Editorial Director: Anne Marshall.  Illustrated by various artists. First printing.  Hardbound.  Essex: Bardfield Press: Miles Kelly Publishing.  See 2004/2007.

2007 City Mouse & Country Mouse: A Classic Fairy Tale. Translated by Molly Stevens. Illustrated by Isabelle Chatellard. First edition, second printing. Hardbound. NY: Abbeville Classic Fairy Tales: Abbeville Publishing Group. $3.06 from MovieWeb.com through Buy.com, June, '08.

This book is almost identical with an edition that Abbeville did in "The Little Pebbles" series in 1999. Let me start by noting the differences. First, this edition belongs to a different series, "Abbeville Classic Fairy Tales." Secondly, it comes in a boxed set with three other books. The box is titled "Animal Fables," and it contains this book and Puss in Boots, Little Red Riding Hood, and The Three Little Pigs. None of the latter three seem to me to be fables! All three of these books were earlier in "The Little Pebbles" series. Thirdly, this book, like the other three, is now printed not in France but in China. Fourthly, the book now has a publication date, with the other three books, of 2007. Fifthly, the publisher now lists offices only in New York and London; Paris has dropped. Sixthly, the text of the fable, apparently identical, has been newly typeset in larger print. Let me repeat the comments I made about the 1999 book. First published in 1998 in French by Editions Nathan in Paris. Delightful and imaginative art work, starting from the lawn chairs in which we first see the mice, lawn chairs apparently growing out of the tops of stalks of wheat. The city visit is a week later and takes place in the house of a rich shopkeeper. The mice are doing their feasting on the bottom shelf of the kitchen cupboard when they are interrupted by the cook. Soon they are on the top shelf when the cat interrupts them. Next they head for the basement where the country mouse almost falls for a mouse trap. That trap is the last straw, and the country mouse heads politely for home. He lives happily ever after in the fields. Eight small versions of the illustrations are presented at the end with the challenge to put them back in the right order. A very nice little book with very stiff covers.

2007 Critical Thinking & Classic Tales: Fables. Sally Switzer and Marion Hindes. Story Illustrations by John Lakey. Paperbound. Remedia Publications, Inc. $19.98 from Twin Generations Enterprise, Inc, Deltona, FL, through eBay, July, '11.

This 8½" x 11" book of 44 pages contains twelve fables, each with a simple line-drawing. Right after each are comprehension questions and a crossword puzzle, both based on this fable. There is an answer key to each at the end, just after a set of exercises using Venn diagrams, story maps, and story sequence charts. The twelve chosen are, I believe, predictable: MSA, CP, FWT, TMCM, GA, BC, LM, AL, "The Fox and the Cat," "The Bat, the Birds, and the Beasts," FG, and BW. The book comes with a CD; its tracks "follow each story word-for-word making them ideal for auditory learners and struggling readers." This book is meant for reading levels 3 and 4. The back cover recommends the book for "reluctant readers." The cat safe in the tree feels sorry here for the fox who has been caught. 

2007 Classic Fables. Texts from Joseph Jacobs.  Translations by Tianyan and Kanshaoyun.  Art from Sunbaofu and Milo Winter.  Paperbound. Dalian: Dalian University of Technology Press Co., Ltd. 19.80 Yuan from Hangzhou Wholesale City Trading Co., Oct., '10.  

This collection of 150 Aesopic fables in two languages has several unusual features. First, it includes a CD inside its back cover. The CD runs through the stories consecutively beginning with the first. There is a female reader and no musical background. Secondly, it uses illustrations from Milo Winter, reduced to small designs and presented in black-and-white. Thirdly, it is organized strictly alphabetically by the first key word in the titles. Thus, as one learns in the beginning T of C, the first fables in order are "The Ant and the Dove" and "The Ants and the Grasshopper." At the top of each left-hand text page one reads "HongChaFong Short Stories." At the top of each right-hand text page, there is "Classic Fables." This presentation of the fables puts an English title and text first, followed by a Chinese title and text. There are footnotes explaining difficult vocabulary. The texts seem to be taken from Joseph Jacobs' 1894 edition. 

2007 El ruiseñor: The Nightingale. Adaptation by Luz Orihuela. Illustrations by Max (Francesc Capdevila). Paperbound. NY: Scholastic, Inc. $2.95 from Powell's, Portland, OR, July, '11.

This is a 24-page pamphlet 8" square. Its left-hand pages present each a sentence in Spanish and English. The right-hand pages present lively full-page colored illustrations. After the emperor has thrilled to the music of the real nightingale, he receives the gift of a mechanical nightingale: "a bird made of metal that sung when winded" (10). Do we not say "wound" rather than "winded"? The emperor kept playing the mechanical nightingale and its one song. He took the real nightingale out and released it. Then the mechanical nightingale broke down. Soon enough, the emperor got very sick. The real nightingale flew back to him and serenaded him with beautiful music. He got better and declared that the medicine that did it was the nightingale's song. One of the best illustrations is the cameo on the final page, showing the mechanical nightingale with a sprung neck. Apparently first published in Spanish in 2005. This bilingual edition then came out two years later. Ten other books in the series are pictured on the back cover. The only other fable, as far as I can tell, is La lechera: The Milkmaid, which I have. It was published in 2005.

2007 Fables and Fairytales to Delight All Ages: Book One: Magic's Silvery Threads. Manfred Kyber; Stories Selected by Barbara Fairall. Illustrated by Zoe Sadler. Paperbound. London: Fables and Fairytales to Delight All Ages: Athena Press. $5 from an unknown source, May, '11.

Kyber wrote in German and died in 1933. I have read the first few of these stories. They are whistful, hopeful, positive. A cat keeps her promise not to attack the mice having a great time at the great mouse ball occasioned by finding a tub of butter! A mayfly leaves its former body and is near victim of a hungry frog, while an economist ant and philosopher beetle discuss the mayfly's strange present duality. The ant could not believe that the mayfly subsists on sun and air and lives for only a day. But what is life but a mayfly's day? "All life is an eternal Easter" (28). The seal Jeremiah Satintop longs for peaceful listening to the bells of Tierra del Fuego but lands on an island where Penguins go screeching and arguing about eggs through the whole experience. Jeremiah chooses instead to live on his own solitary island listening to those bells.

2007 Fables and Fairytales to Delight All Ages: Book Two: Gossamer Kingdoms. Manfred Kyber; Stories Selected by Barbara Fairall. Illustrated by Zoe Sadler. Paperbound. London: Fables and Fairytales to Delight All Ages: Athena Press. £4.49 from AwesomeBooks.com, May, '12.

I had just catalogued the first book in this series when I saw AwesomeBooks' offer of this second. I had wondered about further books as I catalogued the first. As I wrote there, Kyber wrote in German and died in 1933. I become more convinced of what I wrote there: Kyber's stories are whistful, hopeful, positive. "The Story of the Hollow Nut" (33-37) is that of a fairytale child who falls to earth. With a little time, she gets herself into a hollow nut. Soon enough, she has brought with her into the nut a prince, the heavens, and a baby. "The Little Professor Made of Roots" (78-82) reveals, I believe, a good deal of Kyber's own philosophy. The little professor is a part of the tree but proclaims his own intelligence and independence. He denies what he has not experienced, like the loveliness of the top of the tree of which he is a part. The little professor is all about thinking; in thinking, he gives off light. But he has no idea what light there can be when a romantic meeting takes place in the part of his own tree that he himself believes does not exist. 

2007 Fables de Jean de La Fontaine pour Enfants sages. Illustrations de Gauthier Dosimont. Hardbound. Chevron, Portugal: Jolis rêves: Éditions Hemma. €5.36 from Amazon.fr, Nov., '12.

This is the sixth book I have found illustrated by Dosimont, all apparently done from the same set of illustrations and all published by Hemma. Here those illustrations appear in a smaller format. The illustrations seem less bright here. A favorite of mine is still GA (50-51), especially for its two facial expressions. The concluding picture of La Fontaine sitting under a tree and composing a fable is also quite attractive (68). There is a T of C on 69. How many books do I have that have been printed in Portugal?

2007 Fables de La Fontaine. Illustrations by Claire Delvaux, Pierre Bailly, Bertrand Bataille, Véronique Vernette, Clément Oubrerie, Quentin Gréban, Elene Usdin, Emile Jadoul, Muriel Kerba, Jean-MarcDenglos, Sandra Desmazières, Christian Aubrun, and Élodie Nouhen. Hardbound. Champigny-sur-Marne: Lito. €15 from Gibert Jeune, Paris, July, '12.

This is one of a serious set of books I found on my first days in Paris on this trip. As I recall, I was tired and was lifting them up around my shoulder, when a whole group of heavy books fell in the midst of a crowd around the cashier. Oh, well! This large-format (10" x 12") book with thick pages presents FC on its cover with both characters wearing natty clothing. The book has wonderful and wonderfully varied art from some thirteen artists. There are twenty-seven fables, as the closing T of C makes clear; on the last page of the closing T of C is a fine La Fontaine lying on grass and greeting butterflies as he writes. Among the best illustrations are those for "Rabbit, Weasel, and Cat"; TMCM; "Le Coche et la Mouche"; "L'Enfant et le maître de école"; FG; and "Le Savetier et le Financier." 

2007 Fabulous Fables.  The Students of Mansfield ISD.  Illustrated by Vuthy Kuon.  First printing.  Hardbound.  Dust jacket.  Providence Publishing Company.  $2.55 from Half-Price Books, Dallas, through Alibris, April, '16.

This is a charming large-format book of thirteen stories, each composed by third or fourth grade pupils of a specific school in the Mansfield Independent School District (ISD).  For each of these fables, the pupils were to use their school's mascot.  They either held a contest or worked competitively.  Each story has an explicit moral.  The front flyleaf explains the project, and two pages after the early T of C list the many participants.  The stories are fun!  There is, I believe, a surprising confluence in the morals:  "Be confident.  Be yourself.  Be honest.  Learn to work with others."  Several of the morals are surprising for their humor and irony.  "Know that you are great, just don't say it all the time" (12).  "Cheetahs never win" (18).  A fable where an eagle warns dogs not to disturb a bee-hive until sundown end with "BEE patient" (28).  Each fable has a full-page colored illustration.  The dramatic art always gets outside its own frame.

2007 Fabling's Fables.  Victoria Fabling.  Illustrations by Zoe Klymiuk-Tukrner. Paperbound.  Trafford Publishing.  $10 from an unknown source, Oct., '15.

As pages near the end of this paperbound book declare, "Victoria Fabling is a Holistic Consultant/Healer who trained in the UK, and is currently based in Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada."  These are nineteen pregnant stories meant to heal.  Fabling's introduction quotes Wordsworth on "how to connect with the great fountain of wisdom all around us."  The stories are well directed to that end.  They include "Stone Soup," told in a communal fashion not always found in this story.  I could not agree more with the author that stories are how we put the world together.  The illustrations, black-and-white in the interior of the book, are colored at its beginning and end and on the covers.  They show a young woman in her favorite dress and Fabling under a tree, respectively.

2007 Fussy Heron: A Fable by La Fontaine. Retold by Beverley Randell. Illustrations by Mini Goss. Paperbound. Rigby PM Stars Level 10: Harcourt Achieve. $11.75 from Amazon, August, '11.

Originally published (in 1957?) by Cengage Learning, Australia. This is a 16-page pamphlet featuring double-page spreads of remarkably detailed colored illustrations. This version stresses the vanity of the heron, who finds his reflection in the water very beautiful. He first rejects fish with spots. Then he rejects tiny fish. When he gets hungry, an old frog tells him "Heron, you are too fussy! You let the best fish swim away." The frog laughs and laughs when the heron is reduced to eating a little snail.

2007 Gem of Aesop's Fables. Paperbound. Beijing: Chinese Book Company. 15 Yuan from Hangzhou Wholesale City Trading Co., Oct., '10.

As the blurb at Amazon.com reads, "this book collects 120 stories, illustrated by Chinese and English; it is adaptable for middle school students. The vocabularies are about 1500-2000." The last sentence explains the "1500-2000" on the front cover; I take it to mean that this book presumes a reader who knows some 1500 to 2000 English vocabulary words. The focus on vocabulary learning helps to explain one of the book's main features: important vocabulary words are highlighted in reddish purple and translated into Chinese at the bottom of the page. I do not understand the comment about illustrations from Chinese and English. It seems to me that the small designs added to many of the pages are taken from illustrations by either Tenniel or Tenniel-Wolfe. Only three designs are chosen for the last fable, MSA (225). Each new fable begins a new page. There is an English T of C at the beginning. The page layout of this book uses a distinctive format: something like a street sign reading "Aesop's Fables" in the same reddish purple color occupies the upper corner of a page, with a line extending down to the page number at about mid-page. If I were learning English, I think it would be most enjoyable to do it by reading fables! 

2007 Hoi Mythoi tou Aisopou. Illustrations by Delia Tsikareli. Paperbound. Thessalonike, Greece: Mythoi & Paramythia: Rekos. AUD 22.78 from The Orange Beehive, Victoria, Australia through eBay, June, '08.

This is a catchy, lively 100-page soft-covered book of fables for children. As the closing T of C shows, there are nineteen fables presented. The cover picture gives the sense of the book's wit: a parent fox points laughingly off the picture with his hand on his child's shoulder while another fox looks at the same humorous scene. One of the strongest visuals takes two pages: the traveller holds his cloak about him as the wind blows hard (18-19). Check 89 to see the full spread revealing the setting for the cover picture's detail. Other foxes are, I believe, laughing at the fox without a tail.

2007 Houghton Mifflin Reading Indiana: Teacher's Edition: Theme 2: Adventures: Nature Walk: Focus on Fables.  J. David Cooper and John J. Pikulski.  First printing.  Paperbound.  Boston: Houghton Mifflin.  $14.95 from Quality School Texts, July, '13.

Whew!  It is hard to know what is title or series or volume in that long title!  This is a large spiral-bound volume with several tabs.  The cover shows a smiling fox in Russian clothes carrying a basket of fish through snowy fields.  The "Focus on Fables" section of the book seems to begin on T298.  It features TH, CP, GA, BC, and "The Fly on the Wagon."  It also showcases readers from -- whom else?! -- Houghton Mifflin for fables, including specific little volumes of "The Dog and the Bone," WS, FC, and "How Dog Lost His Bone."  There is a full week of activities laid out for a teacher, with an eye on various reading skill levels in the pupils.  Teacher materials have become quite extensive!

2007 Indonesian Fables of Feats and Fortunes. Told and Edited by Kuniko Sugiura. Translated by Matthew Galgani. Illustrated by Koji Honda. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Berkeley, CA: Asian Folktales Retold: Heian: Stone Bridge Press. $9.41 from Buy.com, June, '08.

Originally published in 2001 in Japan by Hoshinowakai. There are three stories in this large-format book of 32 pages. "The Mischievous Mouse Deer, Kanchil" presents about five episodes, each of which is or could be a fable. There is, for example, the episode in which Kanchil gets a group of alligators to line up, supposedly to be counted but really to form a bridge over which he can cross the river. "Panji Kuraras and His Champion Rooster" combines cockfighting, a wandering prince, and a lonely young woman in a forest into a lovely romantic tale. The king's unknown son comes with his rooster to the palace to defeat the king's best roosters in a cockfight. The victorious rooster then sings a riddling song that reveals the king's connection with this family. "The Water Buffalo That Saved the Nation" is the story of Sumatra's independence from Java. The king of militaristic Java has commands Sumatra to submit or to face war. Sumatra's counter-offer is to let two water buffalo fight and to abide by the outcome of their duel. For their fighter, the Sumatrans choose a young water buffalo calf who has been deprived of milk for three days. They secretly attach a sharp knife to his horns, and he immediately seeks the other animal's stomach. Squealing in pain, the larger water buffalo of Java runs away from further fighting. Honda's art is enjoyable. The very first picture for the final story emphasizes the presence of the pattern of buffalo horns in Sumatran dress and architecture. After the stories, there are short sections on the series, the book, the storyteller/editor, the illustrator, and Indonesia.

2007 Jean de La Fontaine: Fables. Illustrations de François Crozat. Hardbound. Toulouse: Milan: Jeunesse. €14.95 from Librairie Équipages, Paris, June, '07.

Copyright 2000 Éditions Milan. But the depot legal at the bottom of the page facing the title-page lists 2007. This is a large-format children's book with lively colored illustrations. It is ironic: I have been trying for a year to find time to catalogue the books which I found in Germany and France a year ago. Until they are catalogued, I will not know what I have. For the last two days I have been resisting entering a bid on this very book on eBay, partly out of fear that I already had it among these catalogued books. Now I turn to the books, and here it is! Here are twenty-seven of La Fontaine's fables in their original form, accompanied by dramatic painted illustrations. The animal paintings here are strong on emotion, beginning with the scowling lion next to the "Sommaire" (T of C) on 6. The illustrations are generally two-page spreads. Among them some are especially dramatic: GA on 8-9; "La Mort et le Bûcheron" on 14-15; and TT on 16-17. Some fables are spread out onto two pages, but the two illustrations are distinct, as in GGE on 18 and 19 or FC on 20 and 21. Despite good efforts, I cannot find the fly -- if he exists -- in the illustration for "Le Coche et la Mouche" on 24-25. Did the illustrator want me to look so long, only to be unable to find the minuscule flea? The sons' faces are impressive, I believe, in "Le Laboureur et ses Enfants" on 32-33. The wolf and the lamb are wonderfully contrasted in size and attitude on 38-39. The sweep of the scene in "Le Petit Poisson et le Pêcheur" is grandiose (46-47). The chagrined fox leaving the stork's home on 53 is a classic, as is the happy shoemaker on 55, especially in contrast with the pale banker in the background. The good "scowling lion" illustration is repeated on 60 for "Les Animaux malades de la peste. The most dramatic illustration of all is on the front cover. A wolf has his tongue hanging out the side of his mouth, while a frog perches on the "F" in the title-word. What big eyes you have!

2007 Knaurs grosses Buch der Fabeln. Hans-Jörg Uther. Grandville. Hardbound. Erfstadt, Germany: Area Verlag. €7.95 from Gift of Franz Kuhn, July, '09.

The Germans continue to create impressive large collections of fables. This volume of 511 pages has at the back a register of authors and where their works can be found. This register also serves as a T of C. The afterword on 487 offers stimulating suggestions but may be hurt by seeing fable as one form of animal poetry. After the earliest authors -- Babrios, Phaedrus, Marie de France, Gesta Romanorum, and Poggio -- the collection is strongly German. Other non-Germans include Guicciardini, Fénélon, La Fontaine, de la Motte, Krylov, and Afanas'ev. No Florian or Gay! Heinrich Seidel, who died in 1906, seems to be the last author represented. One curiosity is that an anthology of various genres of the Barock era is the source for no less than eight of the authors represented here: Elfriede Moser-Rath's 1964 Predigtmärlein der Barockzeit. This is not only a big collection. It is an inexpensive book!

2007 LaFontaine: Fables choisies pour les enfants. Illustrées par M.B. de Monvel. Paperbound. Paris: Lutin Poche. $9.50 from Powell's, August, '08.

Here is a very nicely made smaller paperback version of the 1871 original. This book refers to a 1980 copyright held by L'École des Loisirs in Paris. Lutin Poche is a part of that firm. Let me repeat from the original 1871 version that the illustrations' colors are delightful. The best of them may be FM and WC. Boutet de Monvel is rightly highly praised by Arbuthnot and Sutherland.

2007 Les plus belles Fables de La Fontaine et autres auteurs célèbres. Hardbound. Les Éditions PoP Jeunesse. $7.90 from Marie Gervais, St.-Urbain-Premier, Quebec, Canada, through eBay.

Here is a glossy, puffy-covered, colorful book of fables. It has no title-page and no pagination. There is an AI at the end, but without page-numbers that becomes a list of fables in order. There are fifty-five fables. The cartoon art is highly popular. Might it be computer generated? The fox skips the tortoise on the surface of the pond! This seems to be the B'rer Rabbit story that has the turtle pleading for its punishment to be thrown back into the water. I am happy to see a favorite fable, "The Bull and the Gnat," appear near the front of this book. There are great expressions of appropriately dressed mouse parents over their child's affection for the cat and worry about the rooster. There is a great image of the badly-shorn lamb! Typical of this book is the wild image of the fox whose tail has been tied to a fire-brand. The old lion luring the fox into his cave wears glasses and has a blanket over his lap. The fox in FG is about as frustrated as any FG fox I have seen. ©Grafalco.

2007 Lion Fables. Jan Ormerod. Paperbound. London: Mantra Lingua Ltd. AUD 27.95 from Asia Bookroom, Macquarie, Australia, July, '09.

This is a large-format (11" x 9¼") landscape book presenting two fables: LM and "The Hare's Revenge." The illustrations seem to use about three or four colors, typically tan, brown, pink, and green. LM uses the green effectively for the lion's eyes. The mouse promises when caught to be the lion's friend forever. "Who knows, one day I might even save your life." The mouse needs apparently almost a full twenty-four hours to gnaw the lion free from his net. "The Hare's Revenge" is labeled as a Malaysian fable, but its main "trick" is well known in Panchatantra and KD circles. Here there is no agreement of all the animals to supply the lion with food. Rather, hare has had to listen to the lion's boasting too often and can stand it no longer. So he gets his revenge in the way the KD story follows, that is, by getting the lion jealous of a (fictive) lion who claims to be stronger. The hare then leads the lion to the well where this supposed rival lives. Here, in a fine illustration repeated on the cover, the lion's eyes are not green but reddish. This version does not include the fictive rabbit captured by the fictive lion. The final picture of the lion leaping into the well is particularly good. There are suggestions for teachers for both fables on a page between the two fables. The book is Talking Pen enabled. This book is one of some eighteen bilingual editions combining other languages with English for these fables. Unfortunately, they are a little on the expensive side! Someday I may run into a whole group of them on sale.

2007 Lion Fables/Basni o Pev.  Jan Ormerod; Russian translation by Dr. Lydia Buravova.  Jan Ormerod.  Paperbound.  London: Mantra Lingua Ltd.  AU $21.18 from Supranews, Australia, March, '14, through eBay.

Here is a yet another bilingual edition of Ormerod's Lion Fables, joining those offering French and simplified Chinese to accompany their English.  As I wrote there, this is a large-format (11" x 9¼") landscape book presenting two fables: LM and "The Hare's Revenge."  The illustrations seem to use about three or four colors, typically tan, brown, pink, and green.  LM uses the green effectively for the lion's eyes.  The mouse promises when caught to be the lion's friend forever.  "Who knows, one day I might even save your life."  The mouse needs apparently almost a full twenty-four hours to gnaw the lion free from his net.  "The Hare's Revenge" is labeled as a Malaysian fable, but its main "trick" is well known in "Panchatantra" and KD circles.  Here there is no agreement of all the animals to supply the lion with food.  Rather, hare has had to listen to the lion's boasting too often and can stand it no longer.  So he gets his revenge in the way the KD story follows, that is, by getting the lion jealous of a (fictive) lion who claims to be stronger.  The hare then leads the lion to the well where this supposed rival lives.  Here, in a fine illustration repeated on the cover, the lion's eyes are not green but reddish.  This version does not include the fictive rabbit captured by the fictive lion.  The final picture of the lion leaping into the well is particularly good.  There are suggestions for teachers for both fables on a page between the two fables.  The book is Talking Pen enabled.  This book is one of some eighteen bilingual editions combining other languages with English for these fables.  Unfortunately, they are a little on the expensive side!  Someday I may run into a whole group of them on sale.

2007 Lion Fables/Les Fables du Lion.  Jan Ormerod; French translation by Annie Arnold.  Illustrated by Jan Ormerod.  Paperbound.  London: Mantra Lingua Ltd.  $21.45 from Better World Books, Nov., '13. 

Here is a partner to another bilingual edition of Ormerod's Lion Fables, that one in simplified Chinese and this one in French.  As I wrote there, this is a large-format (11" x 9¼") landscape book presenting two fables: LM and "The Hare's Revenge."  The illustrations seem to use about three or four colors, typically tan, brown, pink, and green.  LM uses the green effectively for the lion's eyes.  The mouse promises when caught to be the lion's friend forever.  "Who knows, one day I might even save your life."  The mouse needs apparently almost a full twenty-four hours to gnaw the lion free from his net.  "The Hare's Revenge" is labeled as a Malaysian fable, but its main "trick" is well known in "Panchatantra" and KD circles.  Here there is no agreement of all the animals to supply the lion with food.  Rather, hare has had to listen to the lion's boasting too often and can stand it no longer.  So he gets his revenge in the way the KD story follows, that is, by getting the lion jealous of a (fictive) lion who claims to be stronger.  The hare then leads the lion to the well where this supposed rival lives.  Here, in a fine illustration repeated on the cover, the lion's eyes are not green but reddish.  This version does not include the fictive rabbit captured by the fictive lion.  The final picture of the lion leaping into the well is particularly good.  There are suggestions for teachers for both fables on a page between the two fables.  The book is Talking Pen enabled.  This book is one of some eighteen bilingual editions combining other languages with English for these fables.  Unfortunately, they are a little on the expensive side!  Someday I may run into a whole group of them on sale.

2007 Little Red Riding Hood: A Fairy Tale by the Brothers Grimm. Illustrated by Jean-François Martin. First edition, third printing. Hardbound. NY: Abbeville Classic Fairy Tales: Abbeville Publishing Group. $3.06 from MovieWeb.com through Buy.com, June, '08.

I include this book in the collection solely because it joins three others in a boxed set titled "Animal Fables." The strength of this simple but direct version of Little Red Riding Hood lies, I believe, in the great illustrations of the wolf. At the end Little Red promises in the future to stay on the path. It is good for her to promise that, but would that purposefulness have changed anything in the story?

2007 Little Wave and Old Swell: A Fable of Life and Its Passing. Jim Ballard. Illustrated by Catherine M. Elliott. Foreword by Ken Blanchard. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: Beyond Words Publishing: Atria Books. $3.98 from Better World Books, Feb., '10.

This is a thoughtful book, apt for people facing the passing of life in either of the senses of "passing." Six chapters take Little Wave through important experiences of life's passing, right up to the encounter with Destiny. The book's message is well summed up in the prayer after the story's last page: "Help me to feel my connection with the vast Ocean of Life, the Oneness within all things." The book is inspired by the teachings of Paramahansa Yogananda, a strong proponent of yoga meditation. The illustrations appropriately contextualize and evoke.

2007 Making Science Count: Math Fables Too. By Greg Tang. Illustrated by Taia Morley. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. First edition, first printing. NY: Scholastic Press. $4.84 from Purple Turtle Discount Books through eBay, Nov., '09.

This book follows up on Lessons That Count: Math Fables, published by Scholastic in 2004. Notice the pun in the title: "too" can also be read as "II" or "Two" as in "Volume Two." Each of the ten stories here works off of a digit from 1 to 10. One male sea horse is happy to be different: he is a pregnant dad! Again, all ten stories except the first deal with numbers in terms of groups that make them up. Four herons, for example, fish first in groups of three and one but then eat the surfacing fish in groups of two and two. As in "Math Fables," none of the stories is a traditional Aesopic fable, but there is regularly a little pointer to an ethical lesson at the end of each story. Thus the four herons "know the secret to success/is patience, smarts, and skill!" Like its predecessor, this book is enjoyable and attractive, even for adults. The illustrations are colorful, lively, humorous, and appropriate. 

2007 Méli-Mélo: Je joue avec les fables. Direction éditoriale: S. Coutausse. Illustrations: K. Daniel. Paperbound. Paris: Méli-Mélo Poussin: à colorier dès 5 ans: Éditions Scarabéa. €3.50 from Librairie Alain Kogan, Paris, July, '09.

This is a 48-page softbound booklet that uses sudoku as way to get into fables. After an explanation and trial, the booklet offers double sudoku boards for each of seventeen standard La Fontaine fables. For each board, the young reader fills in the missing sudoku colors. At the end the 34 correct boards are displayed. Clever! The French keep finding things to do with their La Fontaine fables!

2007 Mice, Morals, & Monkey Business: Lively Lessons From Aesop's Fables. Christopher Wormell. First board book edition, first printing. Hardbound. Philadelphia: Running Press. $2.98 from Green Apple Books, San Francisco, Dec., '09.

This smaller (5" x 6½") book extracts and reduces from the larger edition by the same press in 2005. The pictures are the same strong and simple wood engravings, only now in smaller format. This book consists of, for each fable, a picture and a moral, placed now on the same page. The texts, given there at the end, are omitted here. All twenty-two fables there are represented here. Running Press here no longer seems to claim a London office. As I mention there, some particularly strong illustrations are DS; WSC; "The Flies and the Honey Pot"; "The Dolphins, the Whales, and the Sprat"; and FG. Once again, I thought the book a repeat of something I already had; once again I was -- happily! -- wrong. This is a book I bought on one swing of family visits and found during the swing a year later.

2007 Nelson Mandela's Favorite African Folktales.  Various authors and artists.  Fourth printing.  Paperback.  NY and London: Norton Paperback:  W. W. Norton.  $17.95 from an unknown source, August, '15.

First published in 2002 in South Africa.  Among these lovely stories, I find three that touch on fables.  "The Lion, Hare, and Hyena" (40) is the old story that the best medicine is the skin of the accuser at court.  "The Hare's Revenge" (71) tells of a clever hare who gets his revenge on a buffalo by closing him in a hut with a sleeping mat full of bees.  "The Wolf, the Jackal, and the Barrel of Butter" (83) is from the Reynard cycle.  Children are "named" after the progress of eating the whole barrel of butter.  This is a very nicely produced paperback book!  There are both full-page illustrations and smaller vignettes.

2007 Puss in Boots: A Fairy Tale by Perrault. Adapted by Marie-France Floury. Illustrated by Charlotte Roederer. First edition, second printing. Hardbound. NY: Abbeville Classic Fairy Tales: Abbeville Publishing Group. $3.06 from MovieWeb.com through Buy.com, June, '08.

I include this book in the collection solely because it joins three others in a boxed set titled "Animal Fables." Personally, I find this a good "Puss in Boots," enlivened by many full-page colored illustrations and many more partial illustrations. I had not read the story for a long time, and I enjoyed its presentation here.

2007 Teaching with the Fables: A Holistic Approach. Written and illustrated by Sieglinde de Francesca. Spiral bound. Copyright Sieglinde de Francesca. $24 from Amazon Marketplace, April, '08.

This is a spiral-bound 61-page manual for "teaching the fables in a holistic and living way," as the back cover puts it The book's sub-title gives a good sense of what is here: "Teaching with the fable as: extended tale, poem, illustration, play, puppet show & natural science lesson." The introduction speaks of the evolution of the individual child. The child "moves from the dream-like world of fairy tales to the humorous, self revealing world of the fables. The veiled world of magic, of archetypes, of 'happily ever after', gradually lifts to expose the world of the individual, a self, separate from the archetype" (3). De Francesca, a homeschool teacher and consultant in the Bay Area, goes on to suggest that "around age 8, or when in the second grade, is the time for the child to hear stories that reveal the human moral contest between right and wrong" (3). The book offers "a formula, or approach, to manifesting a broad, fun, creative, integrated lesson plan around a relatively simple subject." I am happy to see this approach begin with the possibility of "allowing the child to discover the fable's real message by using their own powers of feeling and perception" (7). The author's particular approach is to expand the fable story. One expands the story with a description of the setting and a full characterization of the principal actors. There is a helpful list on 29 of natural science lessons contained in popular fables. Part 2 of the booklet offers three sample expanded fables: LM (33), "The Bear and the Bees" (41), and CP (48). A valuable appendix on 53 categorizes twenty-five Aesopic fables for their moral messages, values, dramatic quality, and natural science lessons. Eight colored examples of art responding to the fables follow on 58-61. Unfortunately, typographical errors mar this educational work. There is a run-on sentence at the bottom of 9, for example, and we read on 10 the phrase that mice "have been know to think out a strategy."

2007 The Complete Fables of La Fontaine. Norman R. Shapiro. Illustrations by David Schorr. Introduction by John Hollander. Paperbound. Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press. $25 from Amazon.com, Feb., '08.

After his work on three partial editions of fables of La Fontaine, Shapiro has arrived at a "complete fables." The book gives credit to the three exclusively La Fontaine editions that Shapiro produced: Fifty Fables of La Fontaine (1985); Fifty More Fables of La Fontaine (1998); and Once Again, La Fontaine (2000). The former two were done by the University of Illinois Press, the latter by Wesleyan University Press. The illustrations are apparently all taken from the latter book; one from a well-known fable in that book appears at the beginning of each book. There is a T of C at the beginning and a set of things at the end: notes on texts, notes on illustrations, a bibliography, and an index of subjects. This is a nicely produced book that I would consider using in a course that read La Fontaine's fables. I trust Shapiro's translating. My sampling of translations here only confirmed my earlier positive opinion of his work.

2007 The Fabled Fourth Graders of Aesop Elementary School. Candace Fleming. First edition, apparent first printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: Schwarz and Wade Books: Random House. Gift of Rose and Parker Harrington, Dec., '07.

Candace Fleming's own website offers this brief synopsis: "The Fabled Fourth Graders of Aesop Elementary School is a collection of contemporary fables about a hilariously rambunctious group of kids, fearlessly led by a globetrotting, Mayan-ceremonial-robe-wearing teacher named Mr. Jupiter." That description is accurate. These are good school stories, moving a little towards "To Sir, With Love" and adding a moral to each chapter in case we did not get a message. This is a quick and maybe too easy read. However, it will help some readers get into reading, and no one can argue against that! This is simple reading, but I found myself laughing out loud. 

2007 The Fox and the Crow Based on a Story by Aesop. Retold by Mairi Mackinnon. Illustrated by Rocío Martínez. Hardbound. London: Usborne First Reading: Level One: Usborne Publishing Ltd.. $5.95 from Powell's, July, '08.

I have TH and GGE in this same series and I just ordered FS and SW. They all belong to "First Reading" books by Usborne. This is a sturdy book, about 8" x 5", containing 32 pages. This telling highlights the crow's responses to the hungry fox's remarks. Thus fox says "You're pretty!" and crow thinks "I am!" Fox says "What beautiful feathers!" and crow thinks "They are!" At first crow nods when asked about whether she can also sing. Crow explains to the fox at the end "Don't always believe people who say nice things. Sometimes they just want something from you." There follow several puzzles and their answers. Usborne makes books well!

2007 The Fox and the Stork Based on a Story by Aesop. Retold by Mairi Mackinnon. Illustrated by Rocío Martínez. Hardbound. London: Usborne First Reading: Level One: Usborne Publishing Ltd. $6.99 from Amazon, May, '10.

This book helps complete the series with FC, TH, SW, and GGE. This is a sturdy book, about 8" x 5", containing 32 pages. The story is well told. Pages 10-11 show stork's problem: "Poor Stork! She couldn't eat a thing!" Pages 18-19 respond: "Poor Fox! He couldn't eat a thing!" Pages 22-23 have the moral: "Always be kind to your friends, and they will be kind to you." There follow several puzzles and their answers. Usborne makes books well!

2007 The Giant Book of Bedtime Stories: Classic Nursery Rhymes, Bible Stories, Fables, Proverbs, and Stories. Edited by William Roetzheim. Various artists. Hardbound. Jamul, CA: Level 4 Press, Inc. $14.48 from Better World Books, April, '11.

Here is an extravaganza of 777 pages of bedtime stories! The beginning T of C covers fifteen pages. Included are some 289 or so fables, on pages 384 to 563. Most of the fable illustrations stem from Rackham. The last five or so come from Peter Newell. There is a surprising colored illustration of "The Moon and Her Mother" on 392. This not only a large book; it is also heavy! Jamul seems to be just outside San Diego. 

2007 The Hare and the Tortoise Based on a Story by Aesop. Retold by Mairi Mackinnon. Illustrated by Daniel Howarth. Hardbound. London: Usborne First Reading: Usborne Publishing Ltd. $9.93 from Redline Distributing and Entertainment, Indianapolis, IN, through eBay, Oct., '08.

This is my first find in a series of -- apparently -- sixteen "First Reading" books by Usborne including three fables. All sixteen are pictured on the endpapers. I have ordered TMCM and GGE from the same series. This is a sturdy book, about 8" x 5", containing 48 pages. This telling highlights Harry Hare's ugly boasting. He is a delivery man by trade. He trains hard for the race; in fact, his over-training seems to lead to his tiredness along the way. He actually decides to have a nap in this version. The book seems to me typical of Usborne in the charming way Howarth fills out each picture with small animals going about their various tasks. Good examples include the hedgehog accountant on 10 and 11, the weasel (?) announcer perched in a tree branch on 27, and the skateboarding mouse on 35. Pages 44-46 give a short introduction to fables.

2007 The Old Tree. Ruth Brown. Second printing. Hardbound. Cambridge, MA: Candlewick Press. $14.46 from Book Lovers USA through abe, Nov., '11.

The abe listing for this book included as part of the title "An Environmental Fable." I can find that phrase nowhere in the book. I just checked Amazon and their summation for the book is rather "Cross-species cooperation helps to save a leafy home in an endearing, pastoral tale that features a final pop-up surprise." The story and its presentation are both endearing. Mr. Pigeon the letter-carrier has an idea that does indeed save the doomed tree, home for many different animals. It is all cleverly presented, and the final pop-up is a delightful surprise.

2007 The Real Story of Stone Soup.  Ying Chang Compestine.  Illustrated by Stéphane Forisch.  First edition.  Hardbound.  Dust jacket.  NY: Dutton Children's Books.  $14.07 from Amazon, March, '17.

A first pair of pages challenges the traditional story about a hungry soldier tricking some stingy villagers into making him a big pot of soup.  "The truth is that stone soup was invented here in China, and without any sly tricks.  Here is the real story."  The real story is that the lazy young Chang brothers taught their uncle, the narrator, the qualities of fish stones, vegetable stones, and egg stones.  When heated up, these stones make great soup.  The last of these stones are slightly deaf and need louder coaching.  Of course the soup ends up tasting wonderful!  There is a recipe for "Chang Brothers' Egg Drop Stone Soup" at the end of the book.

2007 The Sheep in Wolf's Clothing. Helen Lester. Illustrated by Lynn Munsinger. First printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Boston: Walter Lorraine Books: Houghton Mifflin Company. $10.34 from Buy.com, July, '08.

Here is a clever, feel-good children's story with delightful illustrations. Ewetopia the sheep is not comfortable just being herself. She dresses to impress others but fails. When she gets her invitation to the Woolyones' Costume Ball, she tries on fifty-eight outfits before she finds the perfect one: a wolf. At the ball, everyone shuns her, until a mysterious stranger arrives, apparently a sheep disguised as a sheep. This character is attracted to Ewetopia and dances with her but keeps calling her "Mother." Soon enough Ewetopia realizes that it is a wolf in sheep's clothing. In fact, the wolf drops the disguise and snatches three sheep. To save her friends, Ewetopia adopts the mother role, tells the wolf that she has a surprise for him, but that he must do several things before he gets the surprise, including picking up his room. He throws a tantrum, loses his energy, forgets his victims, and stomps out proclaiming that he will never pick up his room. Ewetopia has saved the day and enjoys dancing with her friends. The illustrations make the story, beginning with the dust-jacket and front-cover picture of Ewetopia in her costume ball disguise. The spread on 10-11 featuring various costumes at the ball is also excellent, as is the spread on 20-21 of the wolf's attack.

2007 The Stinky Cheese Man and other Fairly Stupid Tales. Jon Scieszka. Lane Smith. First printing of paperback edition. Paperbound. NY: Viking. Gift of Mary Pat Ryan, Nov., '08.

I am delighted to see that this great book is now out in paperback. I will repeat here my comments from the hardbound edition. Great fun! Its LC summary is apt: "Madcap revisions of familiar fairy tales." The book dares one to take it seriously, as when the last page's credits prosaically claim that "The illustrations are rendered in oil and vinegar." Later in the credits: "Anyone caught telling these fairly stupid tales will be visited, in person, by the Stinky Cheese Man." Zipper-mouthed Jack, the narrator, has trouble with the little red hen even before the title page. Jack interrupts the first story because he forgot the T of C. It, not the sky, falls on Chicken Licken and everyone else in the first story. The one fable is TH, in which the hare's growing hair is still racing the slow tortoise! T of C promises a second fable that the book does not get to: "The Boy Who Cried `Cow Patty.'" Delightful modern art.

2007 The Sun and the Wind Based on a Story by Aesop. Retold by Mairi Mackinnon. Illustrated by Francesca dei Chiara. Hardbound. London: Usborne First Reading: Level One: Usborne Publishing Ltd. $6.99 from Amazon, May, '10.

This book helps complete the series with FC, TH, FS, and GGE. This is a sturdy book, about 8" x 5", containing 32 pages. The story is well told. The key in this telling comes on 21 when the sun says "I win" and the wind answers "Huff!" There follow several puzzles and their answers. Usborne makes books well!

2007 The Three Little Pigs: A Classic Fairy Tale. Illustrated by Charlotte Roederer. First edition, third printing. Hardbound. NY: Abbeville Classic Fairy Tales: Abbeville Publishing Group. $3.06 from MovieWeb.com through Buy.com, June, '08.

I include this book in the collection solely because it joins three others in a boxed set titled "Animal Fables." One strength of this simple but direct version of The Three Little Pigs is the individuation that Roederer gives to the three pigs by their clothing and accoutrements. Lederhosen seem to be all the fashion here.

2007 The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse. Retold by Susanna Davidson. Based on a story by Aesop. Illustrated by Jacqueline East. Hardbound. London: Usborne Publishing. $9.99 from Learning Sprout Toys, Tacoma, WA, Jan., '11.

I noticed this book as I wandered around Learning Sprout Toys in Tacoma on a morning of visiting after a fable lecture at Puget Sound University. The story starts in the present but promptly shifts to the past. Pipin is the country mouse. Pipin was surprised one day by a visit from Toby Town Mouse, "come to stay." All it took, though, for Toby to reject country life and offer town life instead was an encounter with the nuts and berries that make up country food. Pipin was overwhelmed by the size of the train that they took into town. They wriggled into a man's green bag and were lifted aboard. In town, Pipin had to dodge "in and out of stamping feet." In Toby's house, they ate until they were perfectly full. A cat woke them up and chased them to Toby's hole. That was enough for Pipin. Toby took him to the station and he returned home to declare, in his soft bed, "This is the life for me." I thought the book might return to the present, perhaps with "And that is why he now lies asleep in among the waving grasses," as it had begun. The illustration style is cute and probably appealing for children.

2007 The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse. Ethel Hays. Paperbound. Seattle, WA: Green Tiger Press: Laughing Elephant Books. $5.95 from Daedalus Books, Portland, July, '11.

As this copy notes, this book was first published by Saalfield Publishing Company in 1942. It took many forms. Now Green Tiger Press, Blue Lantern Studio (who holds a 2007 copyright on the book), and Laughing Elephant Books are reproducing it in lovely fashion. The book is cut to the outline of the two marching mice on the front cover. The rest of the book does a good job of relating to that frame. The back cover's illustration is a mirror-opposite of the front cover. The color illustration work here is particularly fine. As I wrote of the original, multiple threats occur in the city house: from the cook, a trap, the cat, and the dog. 

2007 Treasury of Aesop's Fables. Illustrated and Retold by Val Biro. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Worksop, Nottinghamshire: Award Publications. $12 from Second Story Books, DC, Jan., 2011.

This book takes sixteen of Biro's texts and illustrations from earlier series and puts them together nicely. Two of the stories found in the earlier series do not appear here: "The Boy and the Lion" and FC. Note that these are not the same stories and illustrations found in Biro's Collected Tales. Some of the stories are sixteen pages long and some eight pages. I will gather earlier comments and repeat them here, watching out for changed page numbers. In DL at mealtimes the lapdog sits on people's laps. Biro's best illustration here may be the double-page centerfold showing the dog in the master's lap and the donkey looking in enviously through the window. In fact, the ancestor in the picture on the wall is startled by the donkey! The grinning expressions of the donkey playing and frolicking (16-19) contrast nicely with his expressions when being beaten (20-21) and when reflecting in his stable (22). In LM, thishis lion is not happy with this mouse! Pique shifts to wonder to smiling and musing--and then to desperation. All this development leads up to the fine two-page spread on which the lion is astounded by the mouse's ability to bite through his net. At the fox's dinner, the absence of spoons--which the stork would be too polite to ask for--is mentioned. I do not think that I have seen "spoons" mentioned in this story before. Similarly, the stork knows that the fox is too polite to pick up his jug and tip the meat into his mouth. The faces which Biro gives to the stork on the title-page and to the fox on the story's last page are excellent. The workmen in MSA suggest that a donkey is good for carrying two people, and thus the double load is here not an original idea of the man. The upside-down expression of the ass being carried on the pole is worth turning the book upside-down to see! After each encounter, the man (not identified as a miller here) thinks that he should please the person who has given him advice. Both father and son wear turban-like headgear. At the end, they fall into the water with the donkey. "The Monkey and Fisherman" may not work. It tells of the monkey who wanted fish and so tried to imitate the fishermen who spread a net, only to get tangled in the net. The monkey is told by the rescuing fishermen that he needs to learn about fishing before he does it. In the end, the monkey realizes that he does better catching and eating coconuts. The final lines of SS pay appropriate attention to the "broad grin" on the farmer's face and the scowl on the ass' face, which contrasts nicely with his earlier smile. "The Sick Lion includes elaborate deceptions by the lion to lure the first victim in. Then it becomes an account of copycat behavior, with various animals showing how fearless they are. The best facial expressions may belong to the goat. TH skillfully repeats important words: "hop, hop, hop," "plod, plod, plod," and, most tellingly, "snore, snore, snore." TB has an older and a younger friend. The latter forsakes the former. The bear surprises them at very close range and chases them. Does not this element hurt the story when the chasing bear comes upon one of the two men suddenly dead? The old man is offering his staff as a weapon for the young man to use when the latter climbs up into the tree. The inciting element in TT is not drought or any other danger but the tortoise's desire to fly. Whereas the tortoise in many versions of this story opens his mouth to say something harsh in response to the crowd, the tortoise here opines that the people below must think that he is very clever. Apparently the "thump" of his fall does no permanent damage to the tortoise. In BW here, the boy does not laugh out loud after the first deception. The second day, the townsmen see the boy laughing and realize his deception. Biro's wolf, when he does appear, is terror-inspiring! The wolf eats all the sheep. GGE contains the great line after they have cut the goose open to find the gold inside: "But the goose was full of goose." The accompanying illustration has the man holding the back end and the wife the front end of the split goose. The best feature of "The Eagle and Man" lies in the eagle's facial expressions. He is frustrated in the net, happy to be freed, apparently menacing when he takes the man's hat, and perhaps admonitory as he flies away. Once a hearer or reader knows the story, it becomes clear that the last expression was one of concern that the man follow after him--and so avoid the imminent fall of the wall. The country mouse lives in a ditch. In the city, a man sweeping in the larder calls the dog to catch the mice. The characters in "The Farmer and His Sons" are Italian or German, to judge by their dress and accessories. The lazy sons lounge around in the shade of a tree. After their father's death and their energetic digging up of the vineyard, they are back to lying around under the old treeuntil the harvest surprises them by its quality and abundance! In DLS, the lion-skin falls off the ass as he romps about, and he does not even notice the loss. Biro has a great line near the end of the story: "Without his lion's skin he had no lion's courage."

2007 Wolf! Wolf! John Rocco. First edition, first printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: Hyperion Books for Children. $6.98 from Powell's, Portland, July, '08.

The flyleaf promises "This hilarious retelling, with a twist, of the classic Aesop's fable is sure to delight a new generation of readers and vegetarians." The old wolf is trying to grow vegetables, and he is not succeeding. Too many weeds! He hears someone seeming to call him. He locates a boy with a flock of goats, but notices a group coming from the village with sticks. The second time that the wolf hears the cry, he becomes angry at the thought of a second wolf taking the tasty goats. Between the boy's shouts, the old wolf dreams of mu shu goat and double-goat dumplings. The third time no villagers come. The wolf asks the boy if he was calling the wolf over for lunch, and the boy scrambles up a tree. The wolf tells the boy to quit yelling, since the villagers will not come this time anyway. The wolf offers a deal for one goat -- to be tied to the fence post at his garden. The next morning the goat is there! Then he notices many ripe, beautiful vegetables. "You ate my weeds," he says to the goat. "Why didn't you eat the vegetables?" "Sorry, I'm a picky eater. Please don't eat me!" The wolf smiles and unties the goat. "What's one breakfast compared to delicious vegetables for the rest of my days? I could use a friend like you." Rocco adds: "Double-goat dumplings are overrated, anyway!" The book is set pictorially in old China, complete with silk jackets, bamboo trees, and coolie hats.

2007 12 Fables de La Fontaine. Jean de La Fontaine. Sylvie Charton. Paperbound. Paris: Collection Mini-Livre: Editions Biotop. $10 from Paris, June, '09.

Interesting remake apparently of the 1993 miniature, with five black-and-white internal illustrations by Olivier Le Pahun. This edition adds a fable, takes away the illustrations, and substitutes for the front cover illustration of "The Monkey Painter" an image of an owl reading a book. The back cover's "The Monkey Antiquarian" (like "The Monkey Painter," by Chardin) is also dropped. This remake is more in keeping with the 1998 second volume of the series, which featured cover-work by Charton using a similar design of an owl reading. This volume now has "Fables Tome 1" on its spine. I thought I was buying a second copy!

2007 125 Fabler.  Mikael Lytzau Forup.  Med Illustrationer af Marcus Gheeraerts den Aeldre.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  Odense, Denmark: Studies in Art History, Vol. 6:  Syddansk Universitetsforlag.  DK 130 from Antikvariat Aabenhus, Aarhus, Denmark, August, '14.  

This is a classy publication, including an embossed title on its cloth cover and 125 Gheeraerts illustrations.  Each of the 125 fables gets a two-page spread, with text and illustration each given a page.  I am disappointed in the quality of the illustrations.  For the energy that went into this book and its importance, I would have hoped for lighter and sharper presentations of Gheeraerts' lovely work.  The basic history is given well by Wikipedia: "He showcased his talent in the fable book De warachtighe fabulen der dieren from 1567.  He etched the title page and 107 fable illustrations and had his friend, Edewaerd de Dene, write the book's fables in Flemish verse. Gheeraerts based most of his motifs on woodcuts by Virgil Solis and Bernard Salomon but gave his subjects greater naturalism. Gheeraerts added another 18 illustrations and a new title page for a French version of the Fabulen that was published in 1578 under the title Esbatement moral des animaux. A Latin version, Mythologia ethica, was published in the following year with a title page likely based on a drawing by Gheeraerts. The copper plates were used in books well into the 18th Century and the fable series was copied by artists all over Europe.  Gheeraerts also etched a second series of 65 illustrations for the fable book Apologi creaturarum, which was published in Antwerp in 1584. However, the etchings were smaller than those of the first series and never achieved the same popularity."  Here we get first the title-pages for "De warachtighe fabulen der dieren," "Esbatement moral des animaux," and "Mythologia Ethica."  Next come the 125 fables.  At the end is a set of notes and register of names, especially names of early fable editions.  So many of these pictures set the pattern for decades and even centuries to come!  Good examples are FS (45), "The Fox and the Goat" (111) and "The Old Dog" (231).  This book is helpful as a resource but disappointing. 

2007/8 Popular Chinese Fables. Comics Text by Wu Jingyu & Geraldine Chay. Illustrated by Tian Hengyu. Commentary by Chua Wei Lin. Paperbound. Singapore: Asiapac Books. €9.99 from Oliver Evers China Bucchandel, Urmitz, Germany, July, '09.

This is a worthy book. It is divided into nine sections, with a reflection following each, apparently written by Chua Wei Lin. I presume that he also wrote the prologue, "The Journey of Your Life!" Some seventy-three fables are done in comics panels in these nine sections. Many are quite good! At the bottom of a fable is regularly a philosopher's moral for the fable and the literary source. Some of my favorites here include "The Man from Zheng Buys Shoes" (10); "Waiting for Hares to Come" (14); "Learning the Handan Walk" (24); "Blind Men Try to Size Up an Elephant" (26); "An Owl Moves East" (36); "Two Boys Argue about the Sun" (40); "Pulling Up Shoots to Help Them Grow" (mistitled, 45); "Celebrity Endorsement" (56); "If the Lips Are Gone, the Teeth Will Be Cold" (64); "Yang Yu Beats the Dog" (72); "A Man from Yue and a Dog" (74); "Thrusting One's Spear at One's Own Shield" (87); "Whipping a Horse or a Goat" (88); and "The Strategy of Covering Up One's Nose" (92).

2007/10 Aesop's Fables: Complete, Original Translation from Greek. Translated from the Greek by George Fyler Townsend. Paperbound. Lexington, KY: Forgottenbooks.com. $10.21 from Amazon.com, Feb., '10.

Welcome to the world of instantaneous online reprints! Here are about three-hundred-and-eleven fables on 18 through 331, each starting on a new page. Two of the fables take two pages each. The volume presents several curiosities to the fable book collector. First, the verso of the title-page declares "First published 1887." I have early Townsend editions from 1867 and 1868 and would be curious just which book they have reproduced, but I find no indication of publisher or even of the exact title of the original book. Secondly, I have something like fifty-seven editions with the Townsend versions of Aesop, many of them most likely done in the 1880's. The mainline editions among these present either three hundred or three-hundred-and-fifty fables. How do we come up here with a figure in between those two? The third curiosity is that the final page gives as the date of printing "20 February 2010." The Amazon slip included with this and two other books lists as the date of shipping "February 20, 2010." The book was printed the day it was shipped! The fourth curiosity is that the page after the title-page advertises "You can read any and all of our thousands of books online for free. Just visit forgottenbooks.com." I visited forgottenbooks.com and was invited to become a member for a price in order to read the thousands of books online. This edition does not include the illustrations that were typically done with the many Townsend editions. The book adds a "Publisher's Preface" about Aesop and about fables, both taken from Wikipedia.com. We are in a whole new world here! If I had revised either Wikipedia article, could I have been published immediately?

2007/10 The Lion and the Mouse: An Aesop Fable Retold and Illustrated by Bernadette Watts. Second printing. Paperbound. NY, London: North-South Books. $7.95 from Amazon.com, May, '11.

Here is the paperback version of the original 2000 hardbound edition by the same publisher, published in 2007 and printed in this second printing in 2010. As I wrote then, it was first published and copyrighted in 2000 by Nord-Süd Verlag AG, Gossau Zürich under the title Der Löwe und die Maus

2007/12 Best of More Aesop's Fables.  Edited by Shyam Dua.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  Noida, India: Tiny Tot Best of Series:  Tiny Tot Publications.  150 Rupees from Children Book Centre, Kolkata, Dec., '13.  

Here are 69 fables on some 144 pages, with a T of C on 4-7.  In each of the two-page configurations there is text on the left with a surrounding color frame of the story's background.  The right-hand page is a full-page, simple colored picture.  The typeface of the text changes to allow getting the whole text onto one page.  Only the last story lacks a right-hand page and so a corresponding illustration.  One finds typical Indian influence in "The Hermit and the Bear," which now features a monkey and a king (142-3).  Similarly, we find a crow, a fox, and a rabbit where we would expect, respectively, an eagle, a cat, and a rabbit (10).  In FC, the crow steals a "biscuit" (32).  The eagle raises the tortoise up in his beak and then lets him fly (114).  Notice the error in "The Crow's Advise" (sic, 118).  In LM's illustration, the mouse uses a sword to cut the lion's net (128)!  The title-page picture repeats the good presentation of DS on 135.  I am surprised to find this anecdote among the fables: "King Bruce and the Spider" (136), but it is a good anecdote!  New to me and clever is the story "The Silver Key" (140) in which a traveller outwits his niggardly host.  The dustjackets match the covers.  "The Rat and the Elephant" is on the front cover.  This book complements another in the series, "Best of Aesop's Fables," listed under 2007/13.

2007/12 Big Book of Aesop's Fables.  Paperbound.  Mumbai, India: Wilco Publishing House.  499 Rupees from Oxford Bookstore, Kolkata, Dec., '13.

Here is an unpaginated, heavy, large-format (8"x11") book with "24 Evergreen Tales."  Each tale is sixteen pages in length and may have been a booklet on its own.  Each story has a title-page without any other text than the title.  Then follow pages with at least some text at the top of each.  The art is simple, large, colorful, and the pages are without margins.  The four oxen in the first story do stand literally with their hind quarters close, so that all four are looking and guarding their circle towards the outside.  Once they have an argument they separate and are easy pickings for the lion.  In FWT, right after the fox loses his tail in a trap, he proclaims that he cut his tail off.  This version misses something of the fun of having another fox ask the proponent of the new tailless fashion to turn around.  "Distrust the advice of someone who is too keen!"  The lion spurns lionesses offered to him as wives but falls in love with a human girl who comes to fetch water.  She hatches the plan employed by her father, who threatens the lion with harm if he does not leave.  The other lions soon laugh at him.  The back cover serves as a T of C.

2007/13 Best of Aesop's Fables.  Edited by Shyam Dua.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  Noida, India: Tiny Tot Best of Series:  Tiny Tot Publications.  150 Rupees from Children Book Centre, Kolkata, Dec., '13.  

Here are 69 fables on some 144 pages, with a T of C on 4-7.  In each of the two-page configurations there is text on the left with a surrounding color frame of the story's background.  The right-hand page is a full-page, simple colored picture.  Only the last story lacks a right-hand page and so a corresponding illustration.  One finds typical substitutions, as in "The Hawk and the Jackal" (14), where Aesop has an eagle and a fox.  The thief here does not bite his mother's ear; he hits her (34)!  "The Cat and the Hen" (44), which features the cat as a doctor, has a clever moral: "Uninvited guests are welcome after they leave."  Not a stag but an antelope gets its horns caught in tree branches (48).  There is a folded page corner on 59-60.  The moral of the fable about a lion's bad breath advises that we "keep quite" (78).  In "The Bull and the Gnat" (80), the latter sits sometimes on the bull's horn and sometimes on his tail.  A story about a sheep in lion's clothing combines DLS and WSC (84); eating grass gives him away to another lion.  Not a fox but a jackal has his tail set on fire by a farmer (94).  A fable about an over-solicitous weaver bird and a monkey has this moral: "Advice people only when they want it" (110).  "The Moneylender and His Purse" (112) is a good story about outwitting the lying moneylender who claimed that his purse had eleven coins and the finder had already kept one.  A clever village headman declares "Then what this man found with ten coins in it was not your purse!"  On 134 we find a donkey in a tiger's skin.  In the "Pandora" story, it is not Pandora but man who causes the problem, and what he has left is not hope but expectation, which is strangely pictured as a horse (116).  The dustjackets match the covers.  "The Grasshopper and the Donkey" (70) is on the front cover, while the title-page shows WC.  This book complements another in the series, "Best of More Aesop's Fables," listed under 2007/12.

2007/13 Famous Stories from Jataka Tales.  Designed by Rangoli.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  Delhi: Shanti Children's Books:  Shanti Publications.  135 Rupees from Children Book Centre, Kolkata, Dec., '13.  

Thirty-three stories on 116 pages after an opening T of C.  Each story gets several colored pictures.  I find the tellings of the stories good, as in the first story, "The Golden Duck" (5).  The illustration style seems consistent with other Shanti publications for children that I have seen.  My eye happened to have fallen on "minster" for "minister" on 12.  "The Foolish Son" (27) tells of a won who uses an axe to attack a mosquito on his carpenter father's head!  "The Greedy Bird" (30) is back from other Jataka collections, but this time he reports of grain fallen not on a "freeway" but on a "highway."  That choice works much better with "food-laden bullock carts."  "The Kind Stag" is another staple of the Jataka collection.  He is called "golden" but pictured in usual colors.  Another staple story presents a jackal judge who awards one disputing otter the head of a fish which he had seized and another the tail of the fish, which he had seized.  The clever jackal keeps the middle part for himself (40).  "The Foolish Jackal" (47) tells of a successful partnership between lion and jackal.  The latter would inform the former and clean up after his kill.  The jackal, impressed with their success, asks to reverse roles and the lion finally gives in and soon informs the jackal of an elephant nearby.  The jackal attacks the elephant and is soon trampled to death.  "Foolish Friends" on 85 presents a good short version of the sad falling out of lion and bull under the insinuations of a jealous jackal.  "The Clever Son" (102) tells of the son seeing his father digging a grave for the boy's beloved grandfather; the boy promptly starts digging one for his father!  The dust-jacket is glued to the covers.

2007/13 Most Loved Tales from Panchatantra and Timeless Tales from Panchatantra (cover: Great Tales from Panchatantra).  Fifth printing/Third printing.  Hardbound.  Uttar Pradesh, India: OM Kidz:  Om Books International.  350 Rupees from Children Book Centre, Kolkata, Dec., '13. 

The cover proclaims "Large Print."  The early T of C shows that there are four stories here in the book's first part: "The Jackal and the Drum," "The Most Dangerous Animal," "Two Snakes and the Princess," and "The Donkey's Song."  The second volume -- "Timeless Tales from Panchatantra" -- has six other stories.  "The Jackal and the Drum," some twenty pages long, is quite different here from the version I know from Ramsay Wood's "Kalila and Dimna."  The jackal in this version lives near a military camp.  He gets into the camp and is hungry.  As he is about to steal some food, there is a loud boom in the camp.  He hides behind a tree for hours.  When he finally comes out, he begins searching for food.  Seeing the drum, he figures that it is where they store all their food.  When this "beast" does not stir after he pokes its full belly, he strikes it so hard with a club that he breaks the skin and finds nothing inside.  One might ask if he can do all this without waking the men in the camp.  "The Most Dangerous Animal" is the traditional story about finding four creatures in a well and rescuing them.  The rescuer in this case is a poor henpecked Brahmin.  The creatures include a goldsmith, a tiger, an ape, and a snake.  All thank their rescuer and invite him to call on them in the future.  He calls on the monkey and is given food and on the tiger and is given jewels from a deceased prince.  The Brahmin takes the jewels to the goldsmith, who asks him to wait while he goes off to sell the jewels to the king.  Alas, the king recognizes the jewels as stolen from his son.  The goldsmith then hands over the Brahmin.  Desperate in his prison cell, the Brahmin calls on the snake.  The snake poisons the queen, and only the Brahmin can save her.  He does.  The king believes the Brahmin and punishes the goldsmith, who is "the most dangerous animal."  The third story features a snake living in a prince's stomach.  "The Donkey's Song" is about a washerman's donkey.  In search of food at night, he teams up with a jackal, who is eager to show him where cucumbers grow.  Night after night, the donkey eats and the jackal stands guard.  Finally, the donkey wants to thank the jackal with a song.  Admonished by the jackal not to sing, the donkey goes ahead.  The awakened farmers beat the donkey and tie a stone around his neck.  In the second volume, mice help free elephants who earlier have been considerate of the mice.  Fox helps old horse fulfill his master's wish for a lion's skin by tricking the lion into being tied to what the lion thought was a dead horse.  "Three Fish" has two unusual turns.  The fish who plots to play dead does so by "folding her body in an abnormal way."  The young fish who waits too long and thus can make no getaway takes her own life.  UP is next, told at some length.  Some mischievous monkeys in cold weather see villagers warming themselves with "red balls" and collect berries and try to make a fire by blowing on them.  When birds try to admonish them, the text has the monkeys driving them away.  The illustration shows one dead or unconscious on the ground.  Again in this story, the emphasis is on the monkeys' stupidity, not on the birds' meddling.  The second volume closes with "The Talking Cave," featuring a fox and a lion.  Six volumes in this series present stories from the Panchatantra, as becomes clear on the last page of each of the two volumes here.  To judge from this book, that may be three books each containing two volumes.  The book is unusually heavy for its size.

2007? A Sheep in Wolf's Clothing: A Domestic Drama in One Act (1900). Tom Taylor. Paperbound. London: Dicks' Standard Plays: John Dicks/Whitefish, MT: Kessinger Publishing's Rare Reprints: Kessinger Publishing. $10.63 from Buy.com, July, '08.

This is a 20-page large-format pamphlet that photographically reproduces a 13-page script of Tom Taylor's 1900 play from a copy in the Library of the University of Toronto. Despite the 1900 date given in the title by Kessinger, the date of first performance seems to be February 19, 1857. The time of the play's action is 1685, and the place is Taunton. Jasper Carew, presumed dead after battle in support of the Whig Monmouth against the ruling Tory King James, is being hidden in his home by his wife, Anne. In the meantime, the harsh leader of some Tory troops, "Kirke's Lambs," Colonel Percy Kirke, is wooing Anne. I read it all the way through. It is wonderfully heart-wrenching stuff. For the explication of the Aesopic reference, look to the last few lines.

2007? Skeealyn Aesop: A Selection of Aesop's Fables. Edward Farquhar. Introduction by Charles Roeder. Hardbound. Douglas, Isle of Man/Whitefish, Montana: Legacy Reprints: S.K. Broadbent/Kessinger Publishing. See 1901/2007?.

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2008

2008 A Shop's Fables. Judith Crowell. Illustrations by Bob Fanter. Paperbound. Copyright Judith Crowell. Gift of Wendy Wright, Nov., '08.

The back cover proclaims this "an irreverent, hysterical, allegorical look at the fifty billion dollar wedding industry." This is "a how-not-to-book: a satire in satin and lace." This birthday gift from a recent MOB (mother of the bride, in one of Crowell's ever-present acronyms) is a funny set of satiric memories from a woman who ran for the carriage trade a shop with "dresses for every special occasion in a woman's life" (ii). A good sample piece is "Zip-a-dee-doo-dah" (87). The zipper on the bride's dress began descending during the reading from Corinthians 13 and made steady progress. One of Bob Fanter's delightful animal cartoons (88) portrays this moment well. The cartoons sustain the fable motif suggested in the title and form a little treasure of their own. Crowell also does a fine job of supplying one proverbial quip at the end of each little chapter. Two of my favorites are "High heels were invented by a woman who had been kissed on the forehead" (61, Christopher Morley) and "There is only one pretty child in the world, and every mother has it" (70, Chinese proverb). This privately published find is one of those treasures that is in this fable collection and may be in no other fable collection in the world!

2008 Aesop's Fables. Jifei Wangxun. Paperbound. Miyun: Tsinghua University Press. 39 Yuan from Hangzhou Wholesale City Trading Co., Oct., '10.

This seems a larger version of the 2009 book with a similar monochrome cover showing a cat and a tree against a clouded sky. This is the green book, that one the red. The difference seems to be that here there are not 243 fables but rather 363, not 256 pages but 377. That is, there is half again as many pages and fables here as in that 2009 edition. There is the same design for "The Crab and His Mother," this time on 59. There is again a T of C at the beginning. As is frequent in present-day Chinese paperbacks, text-page foredges are decorated with an identical repeating pattern and the covers are heavy paper folded back to create a flap. Here those elements are identical with those in the 2009 edition. As in that book, the page layout of this book uses a distinctive format. The title of the fable in English is at the top center of each page around a design and set of Chinese characters. A consecutive number of this fable and its title in Chinese and in English is centered above three elements. First, at the left, there is a standard design including two Chinese characters inside of circles; around these are animals and human figures in silhouette. To the right of this standard element is a set of about three to six lines of Chinese characters. Under that text is the English text of the fable. At the outside bottom is a page number in a circle with a printer's design outside of that circle. As in that book, the texts here seem to be taken from the Joseph Jacobs edition of 1894. There are a few printer's designs along the way, perhaps echoing the particular fable.

2008 Aesop's Fables: A New Translation.  Translated with an Introduction and Notes by Laura Gibbs.  Paperbound.  Oxford: Oxford World's Classics:  Oxford University Press.  Examination copy from Oxford University Press, Feb., '09.

Here is the 2008 reissue of Dr. Gibbs' book from 2002.  Nothing seems changed except the front cover's design, which is now taken from Edwin Noble's FS.  And the price has gone up from $8.95 to $10.95.  As I wrote then, it is a fine book.  It delivers, I believe, what Robert and Olivia Temple promised.  I think its chief accomplishment is that it presents the ancient Greek and Latin collections fully.  In addition, there are links to the sources, and a good bibliography of these.  The fables are well translated,with helpful comments appended to them.  In keeping with the quest for completeness, there are often variant versions given of what would be the same Perry number but now has two numbers and two texts in Gibbs, e.g. 31-32, 40-41, 111-112, 139-140, and 255-256.  The organization of the fables is novel.  The main divisions are excellent.  Fables themselves (#3-498) are separated from "Aetiologies, Parodoxes, Insults, and Jokes" (#499-600).  Within the fables themselves, Gibbs offers groupings like "Slaves and Masters," "Animal Kings," "Choosing a King," "The Flock," and "Self-Destruction," to take the first five.  There must be seventy or eighty such groupings.  I am sorry that Gibbs or her editor does not give an overview or outline of these topics somewhere.  Indices at the end of the book track first Perry numbers, then sources, and finally all the people, animals, and things referred to.  I will use this book a great deal.

2008 Aesop's Fables 1. Hardbound. $5 from Jeremy Weiss, Sleepy Hollow, NY, through eBay, July, '11.

Many Korean books I have encountered give some hints about their origin; one can find some English words scattered on the bibliographical page. This book is not like that. I feel lucky to have found a date that I believe indicates the time of publication! The back cover states boldly "Aesop's Fables." There are 105 pages in a book 7¼" x 9¼" with stiff covers and heavy pages. The cover displays a hedgehog; the three children of BS stand above the cover's title. The art is apparently the work of children. It is lively, colorful, and sometimes highly dramatic. Among the best illustrations are "The Hares and the Frogs" (10-11); "The Donkey and the Dog" (28-29); and WS (62 and 65). In the last of these, human faces are inserted into wind and sun effectively. Also very good are TB (70-73) and BS (87-92). There is a companion volume, which has the number "30" in its title.

2008 Aesop's Fables 30. Hardbound. $5 from Jeremy Weiss, Sleepy Hollow, NY, through eBay, July, '11.

Many Korean books I have encountered give some hints about their origin; one can find some English words scattered on the bibliographical page. This book is not like that. I could not even find a year of publication! The back cover states boldly "Aesop's Fables," and the front cover has a "30" where a companion volume, dated to 2008, has a "1." There are 105 pages in a book 7¼" x 9¼" with stiff covers and heavy pages. The cover displays an alligator and a fox; a crow who has dropped his crown and some colored feathers stands above the cover's title. The art is apparently the work of children. It is lively, colorful, and sometimes highly dramatic. Among the best illustrations are BC (16-17); "Two Goats" (32-33); MM (42-43); and BF (50-51). A number of the illustrations use pages printed in English as the background for their coloring. I do not understand this artistic twist.

2008 Aesop's Fables for Children. Illustrated by Milo Winter. Paperbound. Mineola, NY: Dover Pictorial Archive Series: Dover Publications. $10.39 from Amazon.com, Feb., '10.

Here is a fine reprint of the classic The Aesop for Children published in 1919 by Rand McNally. It not only does a fine job of reproducing the exquisite Milo Winter illustrations. It also adds a CD for reading and listening. It reproduces the 112 pages of the original faithfully. All the illustrations are colored. As I mention in commenting on the original version, these stories have a steady eye on correct children's behavior. The stories' actions are carefully motivated, sometimes even over-motivated. In fact, the stories have a tendency to overkill. There are good statements from the characters, made to themselves when talk with others would be inappropriate. There are some double morals. I could find no obvious source for the tellings. I am delighted to see that Dover is reprinting this book and doing it so well! I have long recommended that people try Border's or Barnes and Noble for one of their reprint editions. This may be an even better bet because of the quality of the illustration-printing and because of the CD.

2008 Aesop's Fables for Children.  Valdemar Paulsen (NA).  Pictures by Milo Winter.  Paperbound.  Mineola, NY: Dover Pictorial Archive Series:  Dover Publications.  $12.99 from California, June, '13.

Now here is a surprise.  Dover took its fine book and changed it ever so slightly without changing any of the information on the verso of the title-page.  What does get changed there is the format of their "Green Edition" statement at the top of the page.  The major change in the book is that the "end-paper-flaps" at either end of the book have disappeared.  The format of the covers has changed slightly.  On the front, the "Green Edition" logo has shrunk.  The back cover rearranges a number of elements and adds a new "Green Edition" statement.  Some of the statement that had appeared on the flap is now on that back cover.  The CD is now part of the binding rather than attached to the inside back cover.  As I wrote there, here is a fine reprint of the classic "The Aesop for Children" published in 1919 by Rand McNally.  It not only does a fine job of reproducing the exquisite Milo Winter illustrations.  It also adds a CD for reading and listening.  It reproduces the 112 pages of the original faithfully.  All the illustrations are colored.  As I mention in commenting on the original version, these stories have a steady eye on correct children's behavior.  The stories' actions are carefully motivated, sometimes even over-motivated.  In fact, the stories have a tendency to overkill.  There are good statements from the characters, made to themselves when talk with others would be inappropriate.  There are some double morals.  I could find no obvious source for the tellings.  I am delighted to see that Dover is reprinting this book and doing it so well!  I have long recommended that people try Border's or Barnes and Noble for one of their reprint editions.  This may be an even better bet because of the quality of the illustration-printing and because of the CD.

2008 Aesop's Fables for SATB and piano. Bob Chilcott; George Fyler Townsend. Apparently fourth printing. Paperbound. Oxford: Music Department: Oxford University Press. £8.25 from Blackwell's, Oxford, August, '11.

This is a 37-page large-format pamphlet that has helped me learn that SATB stands for "soprano, alto, tenor, bass." Chilcott in his "Composer's Note" on 1 acknowledges George Fyler Townsend's texts. Five fables are offered here: TH, "The Mountain in Labour," FG, WS, and "The Goose and the Swan." The moral for FG is simply "Sour Grapes." I am glad that WS is told in the better form: "who could first strip a wayfaring man of his clothes." The moral of the last fable is "Music can delay death." I was surprised to find several of these performed on YouTube. I enjoyed what I listened to, though it was sometimes difficult in Chilcott's arrangements to hear the words articulated.

2008 Äsops berühmteste Fabeln. Cernuschi. Hardbound. Renningen: Garant Verlag. €4.99 from Buch-Vielfalt, Schwerte, Germany, through eBay, July, '09.

Here is a heavy book with eighteen very thick cardboard pages. The fables included are GA, "Der Hirsch und der Löwe," FG, TH, WL, AD, and TMCM. The front cover features a cut-out see-through portion that makes the scene of FS part of the cover. But FS is not included here! Several other figures pictured on the cover really do not belong here either, like the mule, the bat, the bear, and the lion with the mouse. In GA the ant relents and gives the cicada something to eat, but demands a dance. The characters and the approach of this book remind me of Disney. Copyright Market Pioneer Publishing Ltd on licence of RL Gruppo Editoriale, Italy.

2008 Aesop: The Complete Fables. Translated by Olivia and Robert Temple. With an Introduction by Robert Temple. Bilingual. Paperbound. Yilin Publishing House. See 2002/2008.

2008 Ancient Chinese Fables. Compiled and translated by K.L. Kiu. Paperbound. Beijing: Traditional Chinese Culture Classical Series: £8.99 from peiyantu at chinesefiction.co.uk, Oct., '10.

This is a curious and engaging book. Its unusual features begin with the beautiful multicolored image either pasted or painted onto both covers. They appear again in monochrome on the title-page. The back cover gives a synopsis of the book in halting English. According to its account, the book presents 100 fables from China, chronologically arranged. One finds here the Chinese text on the left-hand page and an English translation on the right-hand page. There are also annotations and pronunciation tips. 286 pages. T of C at the front of the book. In my reading of fables near the front of the book, I am struck by the conundrum character of many. Among those I find best is "A Fish in Straits" (35), which proclaims "Do not promise me big help in the future; give me now the little help I need now." "Zhan He the Angler" (73) is another good story: the weak can be used to catch the heavy. For many of these fables, I think I miss the right mental angle by a few degrees. They tend to seem either banal or inscrutable. 

2008 Bat's Big Game. Retold by Margaret Read MacDonald. Illustrated by Eugenia Nobati. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Morton Grove, IL: Albert Whitman and Company. $9.94 from Powell's, Portland, August, '08.

This happens to be the six-thousandth book in the collection. There is a short statement on the verso of the title-page about the history of this story. It begins with Aesop and Motif B261.1 in Stith Thompson. The animals and birds are preparing for a soccer game. Bat sees them warming up and decides that the animals are stronger. He joins them. When the birds get a 2-1 lead in the match, Bat decides to join them. Soon the animals are winning 4-3. Bat switches sides again. Bear stops the game and invites the birds and the other animals to gather for a talk. All of them confront Bat and ask which side he is on. "I just wanted to play on the winning side," Bat mumbles. The gathered animals all reject him. He gives back both shirts and leaves the field. "That's the last time he'll play both sides at once!" Good fun.

2008 Boven in een groene linde zat een modder-vette haan: De 75 mooiste fabels. Op rijm gezet door Maria van Donkelaar & Martine van Rooijen. Met prenten van Sieb Posthuma. Hardbound. Haarlem: Uitgeverij Gottmer. €24.95 from De Kinderboekhandel, Utrecht, July, '09.

Each of 75 fables gets a pair of pages in this super-tall (13" x 8¼") book of 157 pages, since there are five beginning pages and two pages of "Verantwoording" at the end. It is a new favorite of mine. I cannot read the rhyming Dutch texts, but I appreciate that they are always short enough to get onto one page. The special gift of this volume lies in the fresh, surprising interpretations given by the illustrations. Since they are always two-page illustrations, it is a shame that this rather slender book has to deal with the crack at the center of each illustration. I am tempted to list many of the clever illustrations. Let me try to restrict myself to a few: "The Old Lion and the Clever Fox" (20-21); TT (26-27); "The Dog and the Ass" (46-47); WL (56-57); FC (68-69); DLS (76-77); GGE (78-79); FG (100-101); "The Eagle, The Boar and the Cat" (130-131); "The Wolf in Sheepskin" (134-135); WC (140-141); and MSA (154-155). There, I could not keep it down to a few! This is the first time in CJ that I have seen a rooster find a ring rather than a jewel (40-41).

2008 Brian Wildsmith's Favourite Fables. Brian Wildsmith. Paperbound. Oxford: Oxford University Press. £14.99 from Oxford University Press, August, '11.

This substantial large-format paperback brings together the five fables Wildsmith did earlier, all of which are already in this collection. I am surprised to learn from the back-cover-flap that a Wildsmith Museum was opened in Japan in 1994. He is still alive in the south of France. As in the originals, the art work here is witty and exquisite. For specific comments see the five individual fable editions, all done by Oxford or Franklin Watts.

2008 Chinese Fables & Folktales I.  Chinese text by Zheng Ma and Zhing Li; Translation by Wu Ying.  Illustrations by Liu She, Ma Rujin, Jiang Jianzhong, and Zhang Peicheng.  .  First printing.  Hardbound.  Shanghai, China: Better Link Press: Shanghai Press and Publishing Development Company.  $12.33 from Big River Books through eBay, Jan., '16.  . 

There are five tales in this nicely produced book.  It is based on a Chinese original of 2007.  The stories here include "Xue Tan Learns What it Means to Sing"; "The Parrot that Put Out a Fire"; "Jiu Fanggao's Eye for Horses"; "The Wrong Way"; and "Helped by an Expert."  Though they are folktales, they seem to me to be fables.  In the first, a student of song has decided too soon that he is ready.  The master sits him down and sings him a song.  The student gets the idea!  The second reminds one of a Jakata story: a noble parrot dips his wings in water to drop some water on a fire that has broken out in his old territory.  A cloud sees his generous act and contributes his much greater water to the cause.  In the third, an expert is so focused on the important qualities of a horse that he fails to notice either its color or its gender.  No matter!  He knows the horse's quality.  "The Wrong Way" I have seen before.  A traveler warned time after time that he is going the wrong way trusts in his speed, his driver, his money -- all to no avail.  In the last story, a poor man needs to sell a horse but cannot.  He calls on the same horse expert mentioned in the third story, and Jiu generously comes by to look the horse over.  Immediately all sorts of people take an interest in the horse, spurred on by the interest of an expert.

2008 Chinese Fables & Folktales II.  Chinese text by Zheng Ma and Zheng Li; Translation by Wu Ying.  Miao Wei, Pan Ziaoqing, Wang Xiaoming, and He Youzhi.  Hardbound.  Shanghai, China:  Better Link Press: Shanghai Press and Publishing Company.  $5.24 from Better World Books, Dec., '15.

There are four stories here.  "Not One Bit Fake" supplies the great cover-illustration of a farmer who has made himself into a scarecrow to catch the bird who had mocked the inhuman scarecrow.  "Zao Fu, the Diligent" is a typical master-with-apprentice story.  "The Unmanageable Bat" is about the bat who has it both ways: bird and rodent.  "Cut the Long Pole in Half to Get inside the City" is a Buster Keaton story.  Instead of thinking about carrying the pole through the city-gate lengthwise, the fellow cuts it in half.  The book unfortunately situates a fair amount of print on colored sections that make the print hard to read.  Apparently the artist and design people did not cooperate well.  Each of these stories at least borders on being a fable.  Was the book originally sold by the Shanghai Museum?  A sticker on the back seems to indicate that.

2008 Chinese Fables & Folktales III.  Chinese text by Zheng Ma and Zheng Li; Translation by Wu Ying.  Ma Li, Cheng Junjie, Zhan Shu'an, Wu Jianhua, Chen Yulan.  .  First printing.  Hardbound.  Shanghai, China: Better Link Press: Shanghai Press and Publishing Company.  $12.33 from Big River Books, Jan., '16.

There are four stories here.  "When the Tiger was Rescued by the Old Taoist Monk" is an intriguing tale.  During a flood, the Taoist master has his monks save villagers and even their property.  They see an animal floating and the master wants him saved.  The animal turns out to be a tiger.  Should they tie him up in the boat?  "No." opines the master; "he will not hurt someone who has saved him."  As they get to the shore, the tiger jumps on the master and has to be driven away.  Fables carry this story in different directions, from Androcles to the frozen snake who bites his "savior" as soon as he warms up.  The art for this story is, I believe, the best in this series of three books.  "How a Hen was Taken in" tells of a protective hen guarding her chicks against worthy predators like an eagle and a cat.  Then a crow shows up, is friendly, hangs around, comes closer -- and soon makes off with a chick.  This is a frequent Aesopic motif, found for example in a shepherd who raises or otherwise trusts a wolf.  "Wang Hao Looks for his Horse" because his horse has been covered with hoarfrost and has turned white.  After some frantic searching, Wang Hao comes back and of course finds his bay-colored horse again.  "Zi Han Declines the Precious Jade" and, in rejecting this tribute of respect, Zi Han gains even more respect.  Though better in this respect than Volume II, this book is sometimes careless about the placement of text on colors that render the text hard to read.  Apparently the artist and design people did not cooperate well.  Each of these stories at least borders on being a fable.

2008 Contes et Fables d'Afrique.  Claire Brouillet and Andrée Vary.  Second printing.  Paperbound.  NY: McGraw Hill Glencoe.  See 2003/2008.

2008 Cuentos para ayudar a tus hijos: 10 fábulas para divertir y educar. Roberta Verità, translated by Vanessa Góngora. Cartoons by Mariana Muñoz. First edition. Paperbound. Barcelona, Spain: Colección Nueva Consciencia - Pedagogía: Ediciones Obelisco. $15.72 from Book Lovers USA through abe, Nov., '11.

This is a Spanish translation of the original Italian Con la testa fra le favole, published in 2000 by Edizioni Erickson in Trent, Italy. It seems to be ten stories for reflection for parents to use with children. The author prefers to call them parables, which she describes in the introduction on 9. The first has to do for example with a young bear named Au, who is teased by other children for experiencing a clumsy accident. Au at first says to himself "I must be stupid if the other kids call me stupid" but learns to let such names go in one ear and out the other. Each parable presents a named animal. The issue with which each story deals is clearly specified in a chart on 18. Verità is an Associate Fellow of the Albert Ellis Institute for Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy in New York.

2008 Esopus Fables.  Various artists.  Hand-made by Diann Greener.  Gift of Diann and Tom Greener, Dec., '08. 

This is one of the loveliest gifts I have ever received!  A stiff-board cover uses the medieval picture of Aesop that graces the background for my "To Jesus Through Aesop" conferences on DVD.  That cover is graced by a (wax?) seal and a complex set of ribbons.  Inside one finds texts, pictures, cut-outs, stamps, and repeated designs of animals.  The first set features a Hungarian stamp of GA that I now will have to find on its own!  A black-and-white illustration of FS is titled "Date Night"!  Other fables touched on or represented include WS; "The Cat and the Bag of Wheat"; TH; FG (again in a Hungarian stamp); and "Juno and the Peacock."  I realized only after admiring and handling the book several times that it opens out as an accordion to reveal a backside set of pages graced by a number of repeated stamped images in a wash of lovely colors and patterns.  Remarkable and precious!

2008 Fables and Life's Little Lessons: Drawings and Poems by Charles Mayrs. #29 of 30 copies; signed by Charles Mayrs; boxed. Hardbound. Vancouver: Black Stone Press. $270 from Wessel and Lieberman, Seattle, Feb., '11.

This book was a wonderful chance find on a visit with friends to a favorite old bookshop. With such a limited circulation, it certainly was a stroke of fortune for me that I found a copy of this book! The colophon page at the book's end has full details on the paper and printing process -- and even a profile of the author/artist. The artist's foreword describes these offerings as fantasies created for the enjoyment of all ages. "Each has a small lesson which encourages everyone to have a wiser, safer or more considerate life." I count twenty-four fables and a final epigram from the author/artist: "Every lesson in life, good or bad, is always a lesson worth learning." A typical fable features a bright title on a right-hand page, a verse text on the verso, and a brightly colored, pasted-in illustration on the right-hand page facing that text. These illustrations are about 4½" x 6". Their coloring is amazingly bright! They resemble Oaxaca figurines. For starters, enjoy "Sammy the Spider," who spun a web to catch a cow but got a pig instead. Several stories have an ecological bent, like "The Moose and the Goose," in which the armed human being is the bad guy. As for sheer illustrations, my prize goes to "Timmy the Toad," who is about to suffer disaster from the bicycle tire apparent at the edge of the picture. The prize for the best moral goes to "The Carefree Penguins": "If you swim with the sharks, be prepared for biting consequences." Securely in the fable genre is the story of "The Elk and the Bighorn Sheep," who lock horns and stay that way forever. Mayr's statement that these stories are "written in prose" in surprising, since each story is presented in rhyming verse.

2008 Fables de La Fontaine. Illustrées par Philippe Mignon. Paperbound. Paris: Éditions Nathan. €6.50 from Paris, June, '09.

This paperback version is a smaller reproduction of the impressive large book published by Nathan in 1995. That book's copyright is mentioned here on the obverse of the title-page. The special twist of that book remains here: each of the twenty fables' illustrations has some classic as its background. As I wrote then, it will take a better person than me to pin them down! The art is generally less well done here; the sharpness of the illustrations and the brilliancy of the colors is often lost in this reproduction. Of course, the art is also smaller than in the original book.

2008 Fables from the Jewish Tradition. Rabbi Manes Kogan. Illustrated by Marcelo Ferder. Paperbound. Bay City, MI: Mayapple Press. $8.75 from B-Logistics, Denver, through ABE, Nov., '09.

This is a paperback book of 104 pages offering forty numbered fables, each with a lively colored illustration and a paragraph of comment--all in a two-page spread. One strong feature of the book is the brevity of each fable. Most of the fables last just a few lines. Many come from the Aesopic tradition. The Aesopic fable about the wolf and the fox, for example, starts here with the fox tricking the wolf into the place "where the Jews live on Sabbath eve" (30). It includes Ezekiel 18:2 about fathers eating sour grapes and the children's teeth being set on edge. I find these fables often not hitting their issues as directly as good fables usually do. They seem often just a bit off. In some cases, the "miss" seems to coincide with an intent to align the fable with a scripture passage. The author claims a common theme, for example, between a good story about a mulberry thief's stained hands, used as a parallel to the story of Cain's blood-stained hands, and the Aesopic fable in which a man uses a mulberry tree as an excuse for his having blood-stained hands. I do not think that there is a common theme here. The Aesopic fable about the fox entering an oak (or a granary) lean and needing to come out again lean is told rather of a fox entering a vineyard and is referred to coming into life naked and needing to leave the same way (32-33). The Aesopic theme is, I think, quite different from the Jewish. The art focuses particularly on the characters' or animals' eyes. A typical illustration might be that of the dancing crow on 59. At the book's end there are some seventeen pages on fables, midrash, and Talmud. I had to find a second copy of this book online because the first I found was lacking pages 19-22. This copy is integral.

2008 Fables: Jean de La Fontaine. Various artists. Hardbound. Paris: Éditions du Chêne: Hachette Livre. €19.34 from Gibert Jeune, Paris, August, '12.

This lovely volume is related to a smaller volume done by Chêne two years earlier. Both combine all of La Fontaine's texts with a wonderful variety of classic illustrations. That book was small in format -- about 4½" x 6¼" with 472 pages -- and this one is quite a bit larger, about 8½" x 11" with 262 pages. Though many of the same artists appear, this volume seems to have its own selection of their best work. The great artists and groups that do appear include these: Barboutau, Bofa, Bon Marché, Chagall, Christophe, de la Nézière, Doré, Épinal, Gellibert, Grandville, Jaba, Jankowski, Jeanjean, Lorioux, Loto des Fables, Moreau, Noble, Oudry, Pautoberge, Rackham, Rapeño, and Vimar. The most frequently used include Bon Marché, de la Nézière, Grandville, Rapeño, and Vimar. New to me and excellent are Christophe (e.g., 25, 26-27, 35, 111, 125) and Jeanjean (e.g., 58, 139). A first beautiful look is the title-page by Jeanjean in the midst of the preface. The larger format allows for excellent reproductions, often without borders and sometimes spread across two pages. Each book's title-page arrays illustrations across the top of two pages and begins texts immediately on the lower halves of the first two pages. The book is again very solidly put together and beautifully printed. And it was on sale! This book would be a great place to start for anyone interested in the history of illustration of La Fontaine.

2008 Fables, Myths, and Fairy Tales: Writing Lessons in Structure & Style.  Maria Gerber.  First edition.  Paperbound.  Locust Grove, OK: Institute for Excellence in Writing.  $20 from jtcreeken on eBay, July, '14.  

Here is the "Student and Teacher Book" for this writing and public speaking program.  An early page answers "What's a Fable?"  Then the first two units work from fables in each of their lessons.  The first unit, "Note-Taking," works from GA, "The Eagle and the Jackdaw," LM, and "The Four Oxen and the Lioness."  Unit 2 has lessons working from MM, FS, and "The Ass and His Purchaser."  A further lesson recommends "A Fable Festival for Family and Friends."  Fables come up again later in the unit on summarizing references: "Aesop the Author."  A lesson in the last unit has students write their own fables.  I am delighted to see fables used for enjoyable work by students in sharpening their skills.  I found several exercises to be right on target, for example the exercise "banning" some overused modifiers and finding fresher and more specific modifiers.  The last page identifies the following five "Best Loved Fables in the Western Hemisphere": CP, FG, BW, TH, and "The Little Engine That Could."  There are some simple black-and-white illustrations and printer's designs along the way.

2008 Fairy Tales: Kaski.  Opena Resakova.  Hardbound.  Kiev: Let's Read in English:  Kazka.  $8 from Pegasus, Berkeley, Dec., '16.

There are four tales here in this oversize hardbound book, and the last two are fables.  FS is the third tale.  The unusual feature of this story is that the crane is male and the fox female.  One of the nicest features of this presentation of FS is the elaborate visual presentation of what a Russian home might have looked like to a visiting crane.  The consistency of the crane's meal is clearly indicated: "he took meat, potato, beet, and some other food, chopped it all and put it in a jar with a thin neck."  This version struggles regularly with language, as may be apparent from the end of the FS story: "So she liked the crane's treating!  Since that time the fox doesn't make friends with cranes."  In the last of the four stories, two bears find a ball of cheese but don't know how to divide it equally. A fox steps up and begins to devour the cheese each time it appears to be in unequal parts.  The biggest lapses of the English translator may appear in this story.  "The bears were sitting, licking and turning their noses but and ben: from a smaller piece to a bigger one, from a bigger piece to a smaller one."  "But and ben?"  The book is filled with pleasant little animal characters doing things like blowing bubbles, as on the last page giving otherwise bibliographical information.

2008 Le Loup et le Chien: Une fable de Jean de La Fontaine. Illustrée par Isabelle Carrier. Hardbound. Mont-près-Chambord: Bilboquet-Valbert. €7.20 from Gibert Joseph, Paris, July, '09.

Here is a simple square hardbound book 8½" on a side and containing twenty pages. The endpapers are a scotty plaid matching the dog's jacket. The pictures are actually photographs of cut-paper collages with short matching statements. Early statements are, e.g., "Good day, dog, one would say that you eat well!" and "Yes, but you, wolf, my but you are thin!" This fable allows itself to be reduced to wonderfully simple statements, like "Hein! Tu es attaché?" and "Bah! Parfois seulement." The last two normal pages give the full text of La Fontaine's fable. Very well done! The back cover is correct: "Une fable de La Fontaine mise en scène avec humour."

2008 Learning English with Fables: Kopiervorlagen: 7. bis 10. Klasse. Wolfgang Schütz. Christa Claessen, Marion El-Khalafawi, Wolfgang Schütz. Erste Auflage. Paperbound. Buxtehude, Germany: Bergedorfer Unterrichtsideen: Persen Verlag. £17.42 from AwesomeBooks.com, May, '12.

From 6 to 99 of this 105-page book, the content is entirely in English. Schütz presents nine fables, with illustrations and questions and all sorts of exercises. Only the occasional header like "Tafelbild" or "Lösungen" reminds one that one is working in Germany. Schütz starts wisely first by quoting Luther that facing truth is hard but that fables make it easier -- and then by commenting that in his own experience as a teacher he finds students enjoying working with fables. The nine offered here are "The Lion and the four Bulls"; LM; DW, "The Lion and the Fox"; "The Race"; "The Eagle and the Sparrow"; The Fox and the Hen"; "The Lion in the Cave"; and "The Raven and the Pigeons." Before a final vocabulary, there are helpful pages at the end offering synonyms and antonyms. I would enjoy learning with this book!

2008 Les Fables de La Fontaine. Illustrations de Nathalie Novi. Hardbound. Paris: Gallimard Jeunesse Musique. €18.01 from amazon.fr, Sept., '11.

"1 Livre + 1 CD Audio." A high-class CD comes inside the front-cover of this large-format book, which has a see-through musical note cut through its thick cover. The music is by Isabelle Aboulker. The book offers at its back a musical passage from each of the fifteen fables. The paintings for the fifteen fables are impressionistic and quite creative. The animals are dressed in aristocratic costume of the time of La Fontaine. OF (6-7) is one of the few illustrations of this fable that I have seen that does not present the ox; it does present a mirror, and that tells the story! FC (8-9) is pictured in a funny way that has the crow perched on stilts. See the front cover for a different rendition of the same story. Both present the cheese as moon-faced. The exaggeration of the horns of the stag admiring their reflection (12-13) is telling. The friendly geese in TT (16-17) are coated figures on the ground pulling a light-winted biplane along a sandy shore! Creative! The grasshopper in GA is a young woman with a harp (22-23). Perhaps the most chilling illustration of the book has the wolf exchanging hostage young with the sheep (30-31). This exchange will not end well! Two pages present something on La Fontaine's life, on Aesop, and on illustrations of La Fontaine's fables (34-35). The melodies follow (38-45). A final feature of this book is that there is a small traditional illustration within each two-page complex of text and illustration. WL features, for example, the anti-Hitler cartoon of J.Y. Moss from 1939. The credits for these illustrations are on 47. This book brings together a significant collection of texts, facts, and art objects!

2008 Les Fables de La Fontaine (outside: Ma Boȋte à Fables).  Illustrées par Lucile Thibaudier.  Hardbound.  Boxed.  Paris: Éditions Scarabéa jeunesse.  $25 from Marie Gervais, St.-Urbain-Premier, Quebec, through eBay, May, '15.

This box contains a pleasing combination of a well orchestrated CD and an imaginative presentation of key fables of La Fontaine.  The CD has excellent French pronunciation, sound effects, and orchestral background.  Each fable seems to be followed by a humorous short dialogue between two children about the story's moral.  Thibaudier's approach to the fables is fresh and fun-filled.  The three panels on 18 mark well three stages of the hare's approach to starting this race.  The frog actually uses a bellows to blow herself up (20-21).  The sounds of the pumping are particularly well done on the CD.  Again on 31, contrasting pictures present the fox and stork of FS well.  We can see the reflection of the crying milkmaid in her spilled milk (36).  Eighteen fables, as the beginning T of C shows.  The pre-title-page shows the name of a young previous owner.

2008 Les Nouvelles Fables de La Fontaine 2.  Textes Jacques Rampal.  Dessins J. Claude Morchoisne.  Hardbound.  Paris: Éditions Intervista.  €7 from Librarie de l'Avénue, August, '14. 

Here is another oversized hardbound book of some 61 pages presenting caricatures with texts based on La Fontaine's fables.  The first "fable" is "FK," featuring four "monarchs" who keep getting smaller, starting with De Gaulle and ending with Sarkozy.  The second fable speaks of the fox under a spell.  It speaks of Renard/Sarkozy as having only one fault, and that a large one: he loves nymphets, dryads, witches, Sibylles, Cecilia or Carla, Carla or Cecilia.  In the next, four pictures turn Xavier Bertrand into a pear.  Clever!  La Garde makes a great heron.  In a great take-off on "The Bull and the Fly," a bull whaps a fly with his tail and says "Sorry.  It was her or me!"  Many of these "beasts" come together in a great final group picture for "Ces animaux malades qui nous gouvernent."  Again, in case we were wondering, the last page -- across from a T of C -- gives us images of Rampal and Morchoisne as, respectively, an ape and a squirrel.  Lively stuff!

2008 Livre II: Les Fables de la Fontaine mises en scène par Dedieu. (Thierry) Dedieu. Hardbound. Paris: Seuil. €18 from Paris, July, '09.

Six exquisite pop-ups: TH, OR, "The Fox and the Goat," "The Heron," FS, and WL. Dedieu's special gift is to create depth by getting four or five layers into the pop-up picture. Among his best efforts is "The Fox and the Goat," which gives a goat's-eye-view of the fox appearing at the top of the well. In each case, the fable text is presented on the left and the right of the central pop-up picture. Exquisite work! I just went on line to find Volume I and track down a copy to order.

2008 Mi gran libro de fábulas. Illustrations by Sofía García y Antonio Perera. Hardbound. Madrid: Colección "Mi gran libro": Editorial Libsa. $17.55 from Book Lovers USA through abe, Nov., '11.

This is a heavy book with thick covers and 192 pages filled with colorful illustrations, most frequently one fable to a page. The illustration style is that popular in published books these days: colorful and sometimes sentimental sketches including the main characters of the story. The style tends to be adequate to the fables but also to produce, I believe, few memorable images. Still, my favorites here include "La zorra y el perro" (31), "Laz zorras y el río Meandro" (135), MM (146), FG (165), and TMCM (192). This edition identifies the author with each fable and gives an explicit moral after each. The book's first page declares "Fábulas de Animales." Other sections include "Fábulas Fantásticas," "Fábulas de Naturaleza," and "Fábulas Escogidas." The selection represents a wonderfully wide spectrum of authors, including a number from Eastern cultures. Lessing is sometimes listed with one name and sometimes with three. I am surprised at the "Aesopic" fable about a dragon on 52. On 64, we find the fable usually presenting a woman who is transformed into a cat, but here it is a man who is transformed. The illustration shows him reaching for a mouse at the wedding! On 81, we find a good representation of "Four Friends" from Kalila and Dimna, here presented as "Popular India." The AI at the end is curious because it works off of "Il" and "La." Almost all of the titles are grouped together under those two initial words.

2008 Popular Chinese Fables. Comics Text by Wu Jingyu & Geraldine Chay. Illustrated by Tian Hengyu. Commentary by Chua Wei Lin. Paperbound. Singapore: Asiapac Books. See 2007/8.

2008 Raeven og storken.  Genfortalt af Mairi Mackinnon; Oversat af Anette Hellemann.  Illustreret af Rocío Martínez.  Hardbound.  Holte, Denmark: Flachs -- allerforste laesning:  Forlaget Flachs.  DKK 89.95 from Arnold Busck, July, '14.  

Here is a Danish version of a book I already have from Usborne in 2007 in English: "The Fox and the Stork Based on a Story by Aesop."  This edition follows that edition closely.  Like that, this is a sturdy book, about 8" x 5", containing 32 pages.  Pages 10-11 still show stork's problem, and 18-19 still correspond by turning the tables on the fox.  There are here, as there, several puzzles and their answers at the book's end.  Flachs follows Usborne in making books well!  Apparently, Flachs went well beyond Usborne in developing this series of books.  I note six other fable books in their series, which seems not to include TH or GGE but to include SW, FC, LM, GA, DS, and "The Little Rabbit and the Lion."

2008 Rosinante's Sallies: Animal Fables for Adults. As Told to Sally Netzel. Illustrations by Liz Netzel. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Thorofare, NJ: XLibris. $24.98 from Amazon.com, May, '12.

I have read the first three of these animal stories and found them engaging. Yes, Rosinante turns out to be Don Quixote's old nag. The fascination here, as far as I can tell, lies in Netzel's ability to get into the animals' experience and to approach human experience as the animals would perceive it. Each story seems also to open up a good question. In the first story, "Peaceful," a young eaglet, tries to convince his mother that there is a kind of ethics not about being the stronger, but she will not have it. The debate goes on even into the next generation. The second story reports a Virgin Birth by a Komodo Dragon, who starts to eat her young but is interrupted in the process. The Komodo Dragon offspring grow up, curious about family life; they see monkey parents interacting with each other and their children and press the questions, especially "Why?" The answers seem irrelevant to them, so they eat the mother monkey and several of her young. Then they start to eat each other. . . . The third story concerns an Armageddon for cats. It all takes place in the home of an old cat-collecting woman who has let things get out of hand. Now she faces a demand to disperse the cats she has collected. Instead, the old woman torches the house with herself inside it. Two highly refined cats, Patty Persian and Susie Siamese, are the last to leave and thank their lucky stars that they survive!

2008 Selección Dorada II Fábulas. Adaptatión: Andrea Pires et Equipo Editorial. Illustrations by Omar Francia. Hardbound. Montevideo, Uruguay: LatinBooks International. $12.48 from AwesomeBooks.com, June, '12.

Here is an oversized (11" x 15") and unusually heavy book offering five vividly illustrated fables. "The Lion and the Mosquito" has an unusual early phase. Though he comes from an insect colony where mosquitoes seem to have fun surfing water on leaves, this mosquito has bothered a number of different animals, who come to the lion king for help. There seems little emphasis here on the fight between the mosquito and the lion. There is strong emphasis on the mosquito's paying for his arrogance towards others. Does he get free from the web? "The Tortoise and the Eagle" similarly softens its ending, since its last page shows the tortoise -- a female with a flower in her hair and eyeglasses -- floating on her shell and enjoying herself in a pond. These two fables are marked as coming from Aesop. The third fable, "Union in the Forest," is attributed to Samaniego. A young elephant steps into a trap using a metal clamp. The hare, the bear, and the wolf try to help but cannot. A squirrel recommends a kind of tug of war pulling apart the two sides of the clamps through a common effort. Not a bad idea! TMCM is attributed to Aesop. Apparently, the city meal here is so good that the two mice take a siesta, interrupted by the cat! The final fable is "The Bee and the Dove," a variation of the more familiar AD. Here the dove seems to fish the bee out of the water with a small branch held in its beak; the more traditional version is that the dove throws a leaf down as a rescue float for the drowning insect. Not a hunter but some fierce animal attacks the dove, and the bee saves her by stinging its nose. The pictures are dramatic throughout, not least because of their size! Now I need to find the first volume of this pair! 

2008 Souris et Singeries: Leçons de vie tirées desFables d'Esope.  Christopher Wormell; traduction de l'américain par Nathalie Beau.  Christopher Wormell.  Hardbound.  Paris: Albums Circonflexe.  €8 from Aux Arts Majeurs, Paris, August, '14.  

Here is the French edition of "Mice, Morals, & Monkey Business: Lively Lessons From Aesop's Fables," published by Running Press in 2005.  As I wrote there, this is a bold, impressive book with very strong and simple wood engravings.  Fables are not told.  Instead, each fable gets a two-page spread.  On one page is a moral and a title, e.g.: "Necessité rend ingénieux.  Le Corbeau et la Cruche."  Facing it is a strong, simple illustration, here of a crow ready to drop a pebble into a pitcher.  After about twenty-two such spreads, the stories are told, two to a page, with a much smaller rendition of the single illustration for that fable.  Particularly strong among the illustrations are DS; WSC; "The Flies and the Honey Pot"; "The Dolphins, the Whales, and the Sprat"; and FG.  This is a beautiful book!

2008 Sur tu va Chuot: The Lion and the Mouse. Paperbound. Hanoi: Song Ngu Viet-Anh: The Fables of Aesop: Donga. $9 from Vietshoppe.com, Ann Arbor, MI, Jan., '13.

This pamphlet joins Tho va Rua: The Hare and the Tortoise in a series of twelve which I am trying to get. Two down and ten to go! Like its mate, this is a fine bilingual booklet of 12 pages. The art is especially detailed and supportive of the text. The text appears in a few lines on each page. The English sometimes is not idiomatic, as when the mouse means to address the lion and says "The great lion, it was an accident" (5). This lion is illustrated to show strong moods. His capture of the mouse is narrated on one set of pages and illustrated in the next. In fact, this entire pamphlet consists of double-page illustrations, all well done. The text picks up well on the mouse's recognizing the lion's roar (10). The back cover again illustrates the fine looking series of "The Fables of Aesop." 

2008 Tales of Kalila and Dimna: Fables of Friendship and Betrayal.  Retold by Ramsay Wood.  Illustrations by Margaret Kilrenny.  Introduction by Doris Lessing.  Paperbound.  London: Saqi.  Desk copy from Saqi, Oct., '13.

This is the fourth format in which this delightful book has been produced.  The book remains as wide in format as it was in the 2000 edition by Inner Traditions, though it is slightly less tall.  The book now runs to 303 pages, by contrast with the 263 pages in the 2000 edition.  The cover is made of thicker material and includes a folded back portion in both front and back.  Its front uses the Bodleian Library illustration of TT.  Its back flap includes a picture of Ramsay Wood.  Perhaps most of all, the sub-title has changed from "Classic Fables from India" to "Fables of Friendship and Betrayal."  There are  two new elements at the end, apparently in place of Wood's "Afterword":  a postscript by Prof. van Ruymbeke and an "Abbreviated Pedigree of the Bidpai Literature."  This copy is again one sent me by the publisher as a teacher's desk copy.  I will be using it with students within a few days in World Lit I.  And I look forward to it!

2008 Texas Aesop Fables. By David Davis. Illustrated by Sue Marshall Ward. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Gretna, LA: Pelican Publishing Company. $10.31 from Buy.com through eBay, Sept., '08. Extra copy from Buy.com at the same time for the same price.

This landscape-formatted book cleverly adapts Aesopic fables. It has 28 unpaginated pages with a fable or two on each page. Each fable has a colored illustration. The "Texas" part of the book lies in local placement, animals, imagery, and jargon. The first two sentences give examples: "One time over in Cherokee County there was an old skinflint who was tighter than a pair of cheap boots. He didn't trust banks, so he took his greenbacks and bought a big lump of gold." A coyote takes the place of the wolf in WC, and a jackrabbit races the tortoise. The satyr who encounters the man with hot and cold breath here is an Indian scout. The boy reaching into a jar has been told that the rock candy is "a nickel a handful." "The Old Woman and the Wine Jar" here becomes "The Rancher's Wife and the Bluebonnet." The bluebonnet is a flower that her husband had given her years ago. She smells it and remembers. "The memory of a good deed never dies." There is a fresh sense of imagery at work in this book, especially in phrases like "as crooked as a bucket of snakes." TH, TMCM, and "The Vaquero and His Boots" get a two-page spread each. The latter features a "prairie godmother." She punishes a "tinhorn named Red" for claiming the gold and silver boots she dredges up in the fable's second half. As a punishment he has to walk back to town without any boots. My favorite moral is "Those who do the least bellyache the most." MM has "Don't count your chickens before they hatch." "The Boy and the Buzzards" is new to me, at least as it is developed here. The boy envies the buzzards and asks them to give him a ride. They carry him aloft and drop him in a dungheap. "Be careful what you wish for--you might get it."

2008 The Boy Who Cried Freebird: Rock & Roll Fables and Sonic Storytelling. Mitch Myers. Paperbound. NY: Harper Entertainment. $4.48 from Better World Books, Nov., '09.

Here is a clearly tangential book for this collection, worth having, I suppose, for some future compiler of a dictionary as an example of how people use the word "fable." Myers' introduction says that the writing here "incorporates the use of fables, straight reportage, metaphorical criticism, yellow, journalism, red herrings, shaggy dogs, serious artist profiles, the reworking of myths and the updating of legends, first-person narratives, comedic spritzing, fanatic pop humor, and odd social commentary--tales of history and imagination, if you will." I will! I take the book to be light-hearted essays crafted and cleverly titled out of a passion for music of the 70's. I read the prelude, "A Rock and Roll Fable," which is a fictional (?) account of how the custom originated of people yelling "Free Bird" at rock concerts. Check Wikipedia under "Free Bird" for an alternate account. Apparently the book was first published hardbound by Harper in 2007.

2008 The Boy Who Cried Wolf. Tony Ross. Apparent second printing. Paperbound. London: Andersen Press Ltd. $4.98 from Powell's, Portland, OR, July, '11. Extra copy from Powell's at the same time.

This is a bigger version of the book Ross first did in 1985. My copy comes from 1981. Not only the size, the publisher, and the place of printing have changed. But the feature character, "Willy" there, has now become "Harry"! Perhaps the change has come because "Willy" is used in frequent sexual contexts, not least of all in the humorous books featuring "Wicked Willy." As I mention in my comments on the original publication, Ross continues to be a wonderful storyteller and illustrator. The wolf put salt on a man whom he was chasing. Willy yelled "Wolf" whenever he had to do something he did not want to do, like take a bath. The mice and bugs danced to the kind of music Willy liked after he had driven off his music teacher by yelling "Wolf." Willy here was riding his bicycle when he met the wolf. The wolf caught Willy and was ready to eat him when the adults said "You shouldn't have told so many lies!" The wolf ate the adults instead! And then...another surprise!

2008 The Boy Who Cried Wolf. Harriet M. Ziefert. Pictures by Lee Wildish. Apparent first lot. Paperbound. NY: I'm Going To Read: Level 3: Sterling Publishing Company. $3.95 from Amazon.com, May, '11.

This book is designed for Grade 2, that is, children of seven or eight years of age. It is well done. The text takes Tom through two groups, hikers and fishermen. Both, when made aware of how they have been fooled, say that the boy will never fool them again. When the wolf does appear on a third day, both groups hear him but state "There is no wolf." That night Tom does not appear at supper. His parents find him outside crying. "A wolf came and chased away the sheep. Nobody came when I yelled." The parents say that they will look for the sheep tomorrow. They believe Tom but admonish him from now on, if he wants others to believe him, to tell the truth. A nice feature of this version is that we never hear whether the wolf actually destroyed some or all of the sheep. Good age-appropriate illustrations. Tom "watches the sheep when he is not in school."

2008 The Complete Fables of La Fontaine: A New Translation in Verse. Translated from the French by Craig Hill. Illustrations by Edward Sorel. First printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: Arcade Publishing. $25.55 from amazon.com, Jan., '09. Extra copy for $8.99 from hossjr, Overland Park, KS, through eBay, Jan., '09.

It is unusual to find a complete La Fontaine. The list in English includes, I believe, only Thomson, Wright, Thornbury, Moore, Spector, and Schapiro. This translation is curious because it took the author some fifty years to complete. As a young poet he found Marianne Moore's translations "oddly wrong" and wanted to do better. The story of his fits and starts (xvii-xviii) is engaging. The result seems heavy on longer lines: hexameters and pentameters. Hill answers in his translator's note that he "wanted La Fontaine to 'sound' French, after all, not English" (xix). "The Bird Wounded by an Arrow" (32) seems to me particularly successful. For me, the longer the lines, the less successful they become. The last of these three lines from FC is an example, for me, of a less than good line: "Learn now that every flatterer/Lives at the cost of those who give him credit./That lesson's worth a cheese no doubt, so don't forget it!" To me, "Cette leçon vaut bien un fromage, sans doute" is simpler and more direct. For the fox and the bust, we have, I think, a more successful moral: "How many a current idol comes to mind/Who is a bust of this same kind" (90). Might "bust" here have two meanings? Again, Hill gives us a great start to TH: "To hurry isn't enough: one must depart on time." (133). In general, I find Hill at his best in shorter fables and when he uses shorter lines. This edition has eleven black-and-white illustrations listed on xv. I do not find them particularly effective. FK (56) and GGE (64) are at least dramatic. Maybe the best of them is "The Old Man and the Three Young Ones"(292).

2008 The Complete Fables of La Fontaine: A New Translation in Verse: Advance Proofs. Translated from the French by Craig Hill. Illustrations by Edward Sorel. Paperbound. NY: Arcade Publishing. $4.50 from Sharon Getty, Homer City, PA, through eBay, August, '10.

Here is a paperback advance copy of a book I have already reviewed in its hardbound version. This copy has only of Sorel's illustrations, FK. It introduces Book 1. There is also here no list of illustrations on xv. Let me include some comments I made on the hardbound copy. It is unusual to find a complete La Fontaine. The list in English includes, I believe, only Thomson, Wright, Thornbury, Moore, Spector, and Schapiro. This translation is curious because it took the author some fifty years to complete. As a young poet he found Marianne Moore's translations "oddly wrong" and wanted to do better. The story of his fits and starts (xvii-xviii) is engaging. The result seems heavy on longer lines: hexameters and pentameters. Hill answers in his translator's note that he "wanted La Fontaine to 'sound' French, after all, not English" (xix). "The Bird Wounded by an Arrow" (32) seems to me particularly successful. For me, the longer the lines, the less successful they become. The last of these three lines from FC is an example, for me, of a less than good line: "Learn now that every flatterer/Lives at the cost of those who give him credit./That lesson's worth a cheese no doubt, so don't forget it!" To me, "Cette leçon vaut bien un fromage, sans doute" is simpler and more direct. For the fox and the bust, we have, I think, a more successful moral: "How many a current idol comes to mind/Who is a bust of this same kind" (90). Might "bust" here have two meanings? Again, Hill gives us a great start to TH: "To hurry isn't enough: one must depart on time." (133). In general, I find Hill at his best in shorter fables and when he uses shorter lines. 

2008 The Contest Between the Sun and the Wind: An Aesop's Fable. Retold by Heather Forest. Illustrated by Susan Gaber. First printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Atlanta: August House Little Folk: August House. $9.44 from Media Crazy through Buy.com, June, '08.

I have several other texts done by Heather Forest, but I believe that this is both my first book by Susan Gaber and my first book published in 2008. It follows the correct version of the fable when it has the sun say "Let us see who can take the coat off of that man on the road." Forest continues to tell the story well. The text moves into occasional rhyme, as when the wind proclaims: "I'll SMASH him against the trees!/I'll take his coat off with ease!" The art does a good job of matching the two forces, e.g., when they together form a circle on the title-page. Gaber can use two pages together for a landscape view, as when the man bends with the wind, or for a portrait view on the following pages, when the wind blows harder and the man holds onto his coat. Here there is no contact or interchange between the two rounds; the wind simply blusters off. The man in the sunshine not only unbuttons his coat. He also sings out loud. Finally, he takes off his coat and sits in a shady spot. The wind returns and tells the sun that he cannot imagine that the sun could do any better than he did. The sun shows him the man sitting and playing his flute. "How did you FORCE him to take off his coat!" The sun answers that he won his way through gentleness. When the wind opines that there must have been a trick, the sun offers to show him the "choice" and the "skill" that did it. The story wisely does not give the wind's answer. The author adds only "The Sun just smiled.." This lovely book is dedicated to "Peace Makers everywhere."

2008 The Frogs Who Wished a King.  Versified by Clara Doty Bates.  With intaglio engravings by Chad Pastotnik.  #10 of 55; signed by Chad Pastotnik.  Hardbound.  Mancelona, Michigan: $300 from Vamp and Tramp, Booksellers, Birmingham, AL, Nov., '13.  

Let me start with the press's own description: "7¼" x 7½";  22 pages.  Letterpress printed in Garamond types. Intaglio engravings. Printed on mouldmade Hahnemühle Biblio paper. Quarter-bound with an Asahi cloth on the spine and Cockerell marbled paper over boards."  The press includes a short comment on Bates:  "Clara [Doty Bates] (1838-1895) was an editor of The Detroit Tribune and author of several children's books. In addition she was also responsible for creating a model library for children at the World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893."  A first illustration, on the pre-title page, shows a single frog looking to the right, perhaps waiting for the page to be turned.  The verso of the title-page has a full-page illustration in brown of four frogs, one of whom is seen leaping on a log.  The verso of the first page of Bates' lively text then includes -- above and to the right of and below its versified text -- a suggestion of the roof of a Greek temple, with a hand draped over it at the wrist.  The hand has apparently just let go of a log, which almost strikes a frog.  Another frog looks on from the bottom left.  Turn  two pages and we see, in full-page without any text, a crane seizing a frog with its beak.  The final page of text features an image below the text of a crane with a crown suspended over its head.  This book is a lovely little treasure, and I am fortunate to have found it.  Enterprising bookmakers and artists keep coming back to Aesop!

2008 The Grasshopper's Song: An Aesop's Fable Revisited. Text by Nikki Giovanni. Illustrations by Chris Raschka. First printing. Dust jacket. Hardbound. Cambridge, MA: Candlewick Press. $10.98 from Buy.com through eBay, June, '08. Extra copy of the first printing for $10.98 at the same time from the same source.

Just after the title-page of this lovely landscape-formatted book of about 9" x 8¼" is a two-page spread of the cast of characters. A reader quickly learns that we are in a judicial setting. James "Jimmy" Ignatius Grasshopper is the plaintiff. We see Judge Oscar Owl; counsels for the plaintiff "Robin, Robin, Robin, and Wren"; a bailiff; witnesses for the plaintiff; the defendants Nestor and Abigail Ant; counsels for the defense "Moth, Moth, Butterfly, and Slug"; and the jury. Members of the jury are introduced individually later on 18-19. At the very beginning Henry Sr. points out to Jimmy that he provided a service that the ants did not request. Jimmy wants to sue for respect. The firm's partners vote to take on the case. The case is presented as posing the question "What is the worth of art?" Osceola Slug for the defense gives a fine first speech. Its center: "Well, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, we are asking you to send a message. Those who fritter summer away will have to pay winter's price" (27). The trial is carefully portrayed. The jury's verdict is that the two defendant ants must indeed pay half of their last summer's harvest bounty. Jimmy strikes up a tune and gets Nestor and Abigail to dance. "This was a good day" (53). This is a well made, enjoyable, and informative little book with a strong message. Page 13 has "we didn't take low." Might that be a misprint or typo of some sort? I mistakenly ordered the second copy before I received the first.

2008 The Magical Dumplings and Other Chinese Fables. Katherine Liang Chew. Paperbound. NY: iUniverse, Inc.. $12.48 from Better World Books, April, '11.

Here is yet another book "printed upon demand" days after I ordered it. The book contains twenty-seven short Chinese stories. I tried four and enjoyed them thoroughly. They tend to be "pourquoi" or aetiological stories, explaining for example why the cat hates the rat. When Nian Xian decided to name the years of the twelve-year cycle after animals, he arranged a contest across the Heavenly River. Both cat and rat asked for help from the bull, since both were unable to swim. Near the end of the crossing, rat deceived cat and pushed him into the water and then jumped ashore ahead of the bull ("The Rat and the Cat," 31-32). The stories here tend to move into the supernatural more than fables usually do. What, for example, was the origin of the kitchen god? Where is the one missing scroll of the Buddhist scriptures brought to China from India? Since all of these "printed upon demand" books have a different printing date from the date of their publication, I begin here to list them according only to their date of publication. 

2008 The Rabbit and the Turtle: Aesop's Fables Retold and Illustrated by Eric Carle. First edition, first printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: Orchard Books: Scholastic. $16.98 from Powell's, Portland, August, '08.

The information facing the title-page indicates that the stories here come from Eric Carle's Treasury of Classic Stories for Children, published in 1988. Some of them appeared, it says, in Twelve Tales from Aesop, published in 1980. In any case, the order of elements is different here. As I mentioned when I first encountered Carle's work, both art and narrative are lively and playful. FC (26) and GA (28) offer excellent illustrations from this fine piece of work. The crow holds a sausage in his beak, a plate with another sausage in one foot, and a knife and fork in his hands, while a wine-bottle and glass sit perched in the tree! Fox and child sit waiting patiently on a bench below. (That same fox and child appear on the title-page.) This version of GA transforms the traditional ending: one last ant who appreciates his music opens her home to the grasshopper. Enjoy the development of the narrative of OF (22) as family members shout that they love the frog as he is! I like this book a great deal, and I am glad to see it newly released. I have used many of Carle's illustrations in slide-lectures. Reinforced binding for library use.

2008 The Rabbit and the Turtle: Aesop's Fables Retold and Illustrated by Eric Carle.  First edition, second printing.  Hardbound.  Dust jacket.  NY:  Orchard Books: Scholastic.  $6 from Feldman's Books, Menlo Park, CA, July, '15.

Here is a second printing of this book, of which I already have a first printing.  Nothing seems changed in the book.  The information facing the title-page indicates that the stories here come from "Eric Carle's Treasury of Classic Stories for Children," published in 1988.  Some of them appeared, it says, in "Twelve Tales from Aesop," published in 1980.  In any case, the order of elements is different here.  As I mentioned when I first encountered Carle's work, both art and narrative are lively and playful.  FC (26) and GA (28) offer excellent illustrations from this fine piece of work.  The crow holds a sausage in his beak, a plate with another sausage in one foot, and a knife and fork in his hands, while a wine-bottle and glass sit perched in the tree!  Fox and child sit waiting patiently on a bench below.  (That same fox and child appear on the title-page.)  This version of GA transforms the traditional ending:  one last ant who appreciates his music opens her home to the grasshopper.  Enjoy the development of the narrative of OF (22) as family members shout that they love the frog as he is!  I like this book a great deal, and I am glad to see it newly released.  I have used many of Carle's illustrations in slide-lectures.  Reinforced binding for library use.  This copy has a triangle cut out of its title-page.

2008 The Race of the Century. Retold and illustrated by Barry Downard. Stated first edition. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers. $12.99 from Powell's, Portland, August, '08.

I am not aware of having many books produced in Mexico. On the verso of the title-page, there is this notice: "Hi, kids! Tortoises need very special diets, so please don't just pick them up and take them home. Besides, they might be in the middle of an important race!" Generally about a half-page of text is aligned with a page-and-a-half of collage art. The art is made up largely of animal photographs cut out and superimposed upon each other. Tom Tortoise works out in a gym where the weights are pumpkins, while Flash Harry Hare trains by flash dancing. There are plentiful spoofs, for example of the live tv broadcast that goes to animals around the world. Flash Harry Hare gets sidetracked along the way by distractions like signing autographs, posing for photographs, and getting something to eat. He actually takes a nap. At the end we learn "'Fast and flashy' doesn't always beat 'slow and steady!'" Maybe some of the best photos are those showing Tom Tortoise's teeth as he smiles. Downard lives on a small farm in South Africa.

2008 The Tortoise and the Geese and Other Fables of Bidpai. Retold by Maude Barrows Dutton. Illustrated by E. Boyd Smith. Paperbound. Chapel Hill, NC: Yesterday's Classics. $14.35 from Premier Books, through eBay, Oct., '12.

Here is an on-demand reprint of the 1908 original by Houghton Mifflin. 124 pages have been reduced to 84 in this larger-format book (6" x 9"). Thirty-four fables, mostly told in two or three pages apiece, together with twelve black-and-white illustrations. The stories here are thus offered individually, rather than in the "story within a story" framework usual for Bidpai. The monkey gets his tail caught in the board that is being split (5). Two traditional stories are particularly well told: "The Gardener and the Bear" (18) and "The Ass, the Lion, and the Fox" (71). Also well told is "The Blind Man and the Snake" (33). The blind horse-rider has grabbed a snake instead of his whip, and now he will not believe his riding friend who tells him that it is a snake and that he had better get rid of it. Other good stories include "The Lean Cat and the Fat Cat" (55), in which the former learns from the latter that the king's table is sumptuous. The lean cat's poor mistress warns him that he will do better to keep eating her broth. Unfortunately, this very day the king gets frustrated with too many cats around and delivers an edict that all cats in the palace will be hanged. The fat cat is smart enough to stay away, but the lean cat is apprehended immediately and killed. Also good is "The King, the Hermit, and the Two Princes" (58). The king hides much of his treasure from his dissolute sons and asks a trusted hermit friend to see that they experience want before they receive the treasure. After the king's death, the older son drives the younger out. The latter goes to the hermitage to seek his father's old friend. He learns the simple life and finds the treasure. His brother gets into a war, loses it for lack of money, and is killed. The generals deliberate over a good new king who will be peaceful and prudent. They decide on the younger son at the hermitage. Two of the best illustrations show the lion jumping into the well to confront his "adversary" (frontispiece) and the camel ready to be devoured by the lion and his three wicked counselors (80). This copy cost $.65 less than the hardbound version second hand. 

2008 The Usborne Treasury of Animal Stories. Susanna Davidson. Illustrated by Rocio Martinez. Hardbound. London: Usborne Publishing. $12.22 from Rockland Books, NY, through Amazon, Oct., '12.

There are eighteen stories here after an introduction titled "Where Stories Come From" (6). The first of the fables included among them is "Brer Rabbit and the Tug of War" (18), whose moral is "You shouldn't judge by appearances." "How Bear Lost His Tail" (24) features the usual ice-fishing trick and one of the book's most brilliant pictures: bear covered with snow while his tail is locked into the frozen hole (27). LM (29) is told in standard fashion but has nice touches like the mouse sliding down the lion's face until he is perched on the lion's nose. "The Monkey and the Crocodile" (34) has the usual features of sharing fruit and a wife who insists on having monkey-heart. "Brer Rabbit gets his Comeuppance" (39) has the tortoise using his family to fool the hare at regular intervals along the way. The tortoises use a white feather to distinguish themselves. Brer Rabbit knows that they have pulled a trick but does not know how. There are several "pourquoi?" stories here. GA is well illustrated on 66-69; the ant relents and lets the grasshopper come inside. The next summer the grasshopper works while he sings -- and he resists the invitations of other grasshoppers to forget about work. A final fable is "The Rat who was to Marry the Sun" (70-75). I cannot understand this book's rules for capitalizing its titles. 

2008 There's a Wolf at the Door: Five Classic Tales.  Retold by Zoë B. Alley.  With pictures by R.W. Alley.  First printing.  Hardbound.  NY: A Neal Porter Book: Roaring Brook Press.  $6 from Moe's Books, Berkeley, Jan., '14.

This is one of the larger books in format in the collection: 11¼" x over 14" high.  The book includes five stories: "The Three Little Pigs"; BW; "Little Red Riding Hood"; WSC; and "The Wolf and the Seven Little Goslings."  The second and fourth seem to me to be fables.  Each story is told in comic book fashion: about ten panels with spoken "balloons" are arranged in strips across each page.  Both artist and storymaker have a delightful time telling and refashioning the tales.  In the best comic tradition, delightful asides creep into various panels.  In BW, there actually is a wolf there the first time that Barry cries "Wolf!" but he does not know it.  Throughout the story, the sheep make hilarious comments about Barry and his behavior.  At Barry's second attempt on the first day, one of the townsfolk says to others "Nice day for being fooled, don't you agree?"  The sheep defend themselves successfully, and the wolf takes off into the next story.  Ronda in "Little Red Riding Hood" is in love with red, clothes, and herself.  In WSC, the sheep again defend themselves quite handily.  A thoroughly enjoyable romp through five traditional stories updated for fun!

2008 There's a Wolf at the Door: Five Classic Tales.  Retold by Zoë B. Alley.  With pictures by R.W. Alley.  Fourth printing.  Hardbound.  Dust-jacket.  NY: A Neal Porter Book: Roaring Brook Press.  $10 from Strand Book Store, NY, August, '16.

Here is a fourth printing of this book with a dust-jacket.  As I wrote of the first printing, this is one of the larger books in format in the collection: 11¼" x over 14" high.  The book includes five stories: "The Three Little Pigs"; BW; "Little Red Riding Hood"; WSC; and "The Wolf and the Seven Little Goslings."  The second and fourth seem to me to be fables.  Each story is told in comic book fashion: about ten panels with spoken "balloons" are arranged in strips across each page.  Both artist and storymaker have a delightful time telling and refashioning the tales.  In the best comic tradition, delightful asides creep into various panels.  In BW, there actually is a wolf there the first time that Barry cries "Wolf!" but he does not know it.  Throughout the story, the sheep make hilarious comments about Barry and his behavior.  At Barry's second attempt on the first day, one of the townsfolk says to others "Nice day for being fooled, don't you agree?"  The sheep defend themselves successfully, and the wolf takes off into the next story.  Ronda in "Little Red Riding Hood" is in love with red, clothes, and herself.  In WSC, the sheep again defend themselves quite handily.  A thoroughly enjoyable romp through five traditional stories updated for fun.

2008 Tho va Rua: The Hare and the Tortoise. Paperbound. Hanoi: Song Ngu Viet-Anh: The Fables of Aesop: Donga. $9 from Ngoc Ta at us2you@vietshoppe.com, Nov., '12.

This is a fine bilingual booklet of 12 pages. The art is especially detailed and supportive of the text. The text appears in a few lines on each page. The English lacks capitals to start its sentences and sometimes is not idiomatic, as the moral exemplifies: "Perseverance wins the success." This hare is illustrated to show some strong moods, from his beginning aggressivity to his anger and disdain as he moves away from the starting line. His panic then in his frantic last effort and finally his disappointment are very well expressed. The back cover illustrates a fine looking series of "The Fables of Aesop" and I am making efforts to get the whole set. 

2008 Von listigen Schakalen und törichten Kamelen: Die Fabel in Orient und Okzident. Herausgegeben von Mamoun Fansa und Eckhard Grunewald. Hardbound. Wiesbaden: Schriftenreihe des Landesmuseums Natur und Mensch, Heft 62: Dr. Reichert Verlag, Landesmuseum Natur und Mensch. €29.90 from Germany, Sept., '09.

"Wissenschaftliches Kolloquium im Landesmuseum Natur und Mensch Oldenburg zur Vorbereitung der Austellung 'Tierisch moralisch. Die Welt der Fabel in Orient und Okzident' am 22. und 23. November 2007." The book consists of fifteen papers, each about ten to twenty pages long. The text is nicely set off by colored illustrations, photographs or scans especially of printed illustrations. Not all of these repeat from the larger catalogue of the exhibit. The presentation of colored materials is exquisite! This is a beatiful book just to page through! It stops rather abruptly at the end of the last paper on 229. I wish I could remember where and how I got this and its companion book, Tierisch Moralisch. Good finds!

2008 Weird Contemporary Fables. By Alvin Fixler. Second printing. Paperbound. Victoria, BC, Canada: Trafford Publishing. $17.96 from Buy.com, July, '07.

Here are 197 pages of fables that last about a page apiece. The beginning T of C takes more than three pages. There is nothing but fables here. I read the first eight or so. Some are curious. Are some angry? The best work by a surprising shift of categories. An artist who has sold a piece of bogus art with no picture answers a complaint by viewing the hung picture and saying that it has been hung upside down ("Artist," 5). There are rather frequent typos. The back cover's fable is a good choice. A hissing cockroach has trouble hissing. He rattles, whistles, clicks, and groans. He goes to the doctor and has an expensive surgery. He gets rid of the rattling, whistling, clicking, and groaning. Unfortunately, he also got rid of the hissing. One of the book's idiosyncrasies is that any fable continuing onto the following page has its title repeated as the beginning of the first line with "(CONTINUED)" added. "Weird" may be the best depiction of these little vignettes. This copy, Jeanette Hilton noticed as she catalogued it for the library, is missing pages 198-219, and 197 presents only the left two-thirds of its page's material! I called the publisher. Finding out who really publishes a digitally reproduced book is not easy! After about three calls, I was able to order another copy for the reduced price of $16.96. The original price had been $17.96. I fear that digital publishing, when it means copying old books, may bring a whole raft of new problems! I have created a separate listing without these last few remarks for that integral copy.

2008 Weird Contemporary Fables. By Alvin Fixler. Second printing. Paperbound. Victoria, BC, Canada: Trafford Publishing. $16.96 from Trafford Publishing, Oct., '08.

Here are 197 pages of fables that last about a page apiece. The beginning T of C takes more than three pages. There is nothing but fables here. I read the first eight or so. Some are curious. Are some angry? The best work by a surprising shift of categories. An artist who has sold a piece of bogus art with no picture answers a complaint by viewing the hung picture and saying that it has been hung upside down ("Artist," 5). There are rather frequent typos. The back cover's fable is a good choice. A hissing cockroach has trouble hissing. He rattles, whistles, clicks, and groans. He goes to the doctor and has an expensive surgery. He gets rid of the rattling, whistling, clicking, and groaning. Unfortunately, he also got rid of the hissing. One of the book's idiosyncrasies is that any fable continuing onto the following page has its title repeated as the beginning of the first line with "(CONTINUED)" added. "Weird" may be the best depiction of these little vignettes. This copy is the integral copy with all 219 pages. See a separate listing for the original defective copy with only 197 pages.

2008 Yi Suo Yu Yan (Chinese). Linlan. Illustrations by DuoDuo Workshop. Hardbound. Guangzhou: Xiangban Yisheng: Hubei Fine Arts Publishing House.  19.80 Yuan from Hangzhou Wholesale City Trading Co., Oct., '10.

Here is a children's book about 5¾" x 7". It contains some thirty-seven fables, usually about five or six pages long. The book has 216 pages. It is bilingual in an unusual fashion. Each page has an upper box enclosing the following elements: a Chinese title, individual Chinese characters just below their English transcriptions, and a colored cartoon presentation of a scene from the fable. Below this box are the corresponding one or two lines of English text of the fable. The book presents some oddities. English readers may notice first the unusual syllabifications like "be-ast" (20), "couldn'-t" (47), and "colo-urful" (60). The wolf gulped down a wild hare who "collided with a tree trunk and died" (35). A greedy egret responds to his cry for help. On 57, the "God of space" holds a beauty contest among the birds. On 72-73, one can see the pieces of the snake into which the farmer has hacked the frozen beast. Alas, the snake had already poisoned him, and he died. Though the rest of the text and the illustrations seem to get the story right, FM gets confused on 98 when we read "The frog tied the mouse's legs to his own, and jumped into the pond together." In this story of the lion in love, the farmer's daughter has the bright idea and herself convinces the lion to have his teeth and claws removed. In TB, this version misses the fun when the tree-climbing "thin guy" asks the "fat guy" what the fat guy said to the bear" (171). It is more fun to have this joker ask what the bear said to the man. After all, the man was playing dead! On 197 there is a surprising last phase to FS. The fox has already struggled with soup in a jug. "Later, the crane placed a dish of meat in front of the fox. The fox felt very embarrassed." Might an element of Chinese culture be at work here that we miss? 

2008 50 Aesop's Fables for Children. Mother Hodges. With pictures by Milo Winter. Paperbound. : New Events Group. $19.95 from Amazon.com, May, '09.

This mid-sized edition (7" x 10") takes the art and stories of The Aesop for Children -- "simple enough for a child to understand; deep enough to challenge an adult," as the front-cover says. The pictures are surprisingly small for an edition like this, only a few square inches apiece. This is my first encounter with Mother Hodges.

2008/12 Moral Stories for Children.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  Delhi: Shanti Children's Books:  Shanti Publications.  135 Rupees from Children Book Centre, Kolkata, Dec., '13.  

This volume seems a member of a series that also includes "Famous Stories from Jataka Tales" and "Famous Stories from Panchatantra."  Here there are forty-six numbered stories on 112 pages after an opening T of C.  The dust-jacket is again glued to the covers, which here show a horse, peacock, and rabbit on the front and a wolf on the back.  GGE and GA are on the respective flyleaves.  Most stories come from the collections we call Aesopic, though there is no reference to Aesop.  Thus FS, FG, and CP are three of the first four fables told and pictured here.  "Bad Company" (20) reverses the usual fable as this farmer releases the pigeon that is feeding with the crows on his grain.  The moral to GA is "No pain; no gain" (31).  One story I cannot remember from Aesopic collections is "Catching a Thief" (46), in which a wise king distributes "magic sticks" of equal length to suspects, saying that the criminal's stick will increase by two centimeters.  Of course the thief cuts his stick back two centimeters!  "The Real Princess" (55) is the story of the princess and the pea.  "False Friends Let Us Down" (62) is Gay's story of the hare and her many friends.  "The Gainful Agreement" (81) is the old story in which a gnome and a farmer agree to share halves of the produce.  The farmer outwits him by planting potatoes and taking the lower half; surprisingly, the gnome then gives up and runs away!  Several of the last stories delve into further magic, including genies and pearl-making birds.  Each story gets several colored pictures in Shanti's simple but lively style.  For sheer visual delight, I enjoy the picture on 100 of the tree admonishing the boys who are enjoying its shade but calling the tree useless.

2008/12 Rosinante's Sallies: Animal Fables for Adults. As Told to Sally Netzel. Illustrations by Liz Netzel. Paperbound. Lexington, KY: Xlibris. $2.83 from Amazon.com, May, '12.

Here is the paperbound version of the hardbound book I have listed under "2008." This turns out to be a "print upon demand" book, with the tell-tale date on the last page of May 5, 2012. I can find no other differences. Let me repeat my remarks from there. I have read the first three of these animal stories and found them engaging. Yes, Rosinante turns out to be Don Quixote's old nag. The fascination here, as far as I can tell, lies in Netzel's ability to get into the animals' experience and to approach human experience as the animals would perceive it. Each story seems also to open up a good question. In the first story, "Peaceful," a young eaglet, tries to convince his mother that there is a kind of ethics not about being the stronger, but she will not have it. The debate goes on even into the next generation. The second story reports a Virgin Birth by a Komodo Dragon, who starts to eat her young but is interrupted in the process. The Komodo Dragon offspring grow up, curious about family life; they see monkey parents interacting with each other and their children and press the questions, especially "Why?" The answers seem irrelevant to them, so they eat the mother monkey and several of her young. Then they start to eat each other.. The third story concerns an Armageddon for cats. It all takes place in the home of an old cat-collecting woman who has let things get out of hand. Now she faces a demand to disperse the cats she has collected. Instead, the old woman torches the house with herself inside it. Two highly refined cats, Patty Persian and Susie Siamese, are the last to leave and thank their lucky stars that they survive!

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2009

2009 A Selection of World's Great Fables. Li Changshan. First edition. Paperbound. Beijing: China Publishing Group, China Translation and Publishing Corporation. $10.31 from peiyantu, Hangzhou, China, through eBay, Sept., '11.

Ninety-three fables with English on left-hand and Chinese on right-hand pages. The same illustration occurs on all the upper left pages: it looks to me like a Byzantine church mosaic featuring an angel flanked by two saints, with horses and riders below. On all the upper right pages is an apparently Egyptian painting of a human, a staff, and a crane. That same picture occurs in larger format after the opening T of C and before the text section of the book. On the book's cover is a colored medieval medallion of a woman and maid with attending animals, including a unicorn. As the eBay advertisement for the book proclaims, "This book not only collects the great fables in Panchatantra and Aesop's Fables, but also the works of Lafontaine, Lessing and Krylov etc." That seems an accurate description. Some of the fables are new to me, e.g., "Sparrow and Elephant" (24). In "The Bear and the Fox" (36), is it not more likely that the fox would say to the bear "Oh! that you would refrain from eating the living and not the dead" than that he would say, as he does here, "Oh! that you would eat the living and not the dead"? There are ninety-three fables on 145 pages.

2009 Aesop I gConamara. Nollaig MacCongáil (Eagarthóir). First edition; Signed by Nollaig MacCongáil. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Galway, Ireland: Arlen House. $28.57 from Kenny's Books, Galway, Ireland, Nov., '11.

The bookdealer writes this: "One day a man called Domhnall O Cearbhaill had a brilliant idea, he would make an Irish version of Aesop's fables available. The storyteller Pádraig Mac Con Iomaire did the work for him and this resulted in Aesop I gConamara. Nollaig Mac Congail presents to us a beautiful edition complete with introduction and background information." I note several things about this lovely volume. First, there is a fine colored illustration on the dust-jacket. Does it represent the deer that ate foolishly from the vine that was helping to cover him? Here it seems a goat has taken the deer's place. Secondly, the book is signed by the editor. Thirdly, pages 61 through 177 present a fable a page. Fourthly, one reading the notes (184-92) notices a good deal of English interspersed in the Gaelic. This is a very nicely produced book!

2009 Aesoper Galpa Samagra (Aesop's Fables: Bengali).  Retold by Naresh Chandra Jana.  Illustrated by Chandan Basu.  Hardbound.  Kolkata: Sisu Sahitya Sangsad, Pv. Lt.  100 Rupies from Oxford Bookstore, Kolkata, Dec., '13.  

Here is a genuine find in this sense: I found it without help on the shelves in this fine bookshop near St. Xavier's College in Kolkata.  The picture on the cover, including a fox and some grapes, gave me the clue.  It is my first book exclusively in Bengali; I have a bilingual copy of "Fox Fables" that has both Bengali and English.  This book features about a dozen full-page black-and-white designs.  Among the best of them are "The Ethiopian" and CW.  I cannot give page numbers because those too are in Bengali!  I am proud of finding this book on my busy day in Kolkata!

2009 Aesop's Fables. Retold by Manasi Dasgupta. Illustrated by Goutam Chattopadhyay; Cover designed by Babul Dey. Paperbound. Kolkata, India: Book Club. Gift of the Book Club, Kolkata, India, April, '12.

This small-format (4¾" x 7") paperback book of 128 pages is in a series with two others that I have, Stories from the Panchatantra and Moral Stories. Editors differ for each volume but the artists for both the interior and the cover remain the same. There are here some thirty-two fables, each with a full-page black-and-white line drawing. Some also have a smaller detail from that page in a circle. The stories are mostly recognizable Aesopic fables. This may be the first time that I have seen TMCM referred to as "The City Mouse and the Village Mouse" (41). DW here becomes "The Fox and the Dog" (73). The typos continue to occur in this volume, as they had in the other volumes. Notice, for example, "upto" on 67 and "servent" on 97, followed by "servant" on 98. Stories new to me include "The Foolish Fox and the Tortoise" (93); "The Dog's Tail" (97); "Unwanted Advice" (100); "Four Friends and the Lion" (115); and "The Goat and the Monkey" (123). The illustration for "The Young Mouse, the Cat and the Cock" (90) gives a good idea of the quality of illustrations here. "The Twin Frogs" here (105) is the same story as "The Two Frogs" in Moral Stories but the two versions and illustrations differ. A colored illustration of CP is on the cover of this paperback.

2009 Aesop's Fables. Retold by John Cech. Illustrated by Martin Jarrie. First printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY/London: Sterling Publishing Co. Gift of Mary Pat Ryan, Nov., '09. Extra copy of the first printing for $18.61 from Fetch Enterprises, Indianapolis, IN, through eBay, March, '09.

This is a fine new book of Aesop's fables! The art is angular and detailed in the style of Lane Smith, featuring elongated figures with stiltlike limbs. Facing the beginning T of C is a quilt of thirty-six details from the illustrations for the thirty-six fables, each of which gets a page for text and illustration. My sense is that the illustrations may be much stronger than the texts. The grasshopper gives the ant both advice and grains (5). SW (16) is told in the poorer fashion. The illustrations are fascinating and engaging. Among the best of them, I believe, are BF (6), SW (16), "The Lady and Her Maids" (28), and "The Bald Knight" (32). So many fable books appear that have little justification for a new book. This new book is different!

2009 Aesop's Fables. Retold and Illustrated by Alice Shirley. Retold and Illustrated by Alice Shirley. First edition, first printing. Hardbound. London: Pavilion Children's Books: Avona Books Company. $14.39 from Amazon.com, August, '10. Extra copy for 15.59 from Amazon.com, Dec., '10.

This new Aesop is big and bold. Its cover has the texture of leather. Its art is made chiefly of ink-blots skillfully rendered as various creatures. Among the best of the illustrations are the peacock on 16, FG on 22, and the cicadas on 152-3. Most fables finish on the page on which they start. The texts show two tendencies. Positively, they are often snappy, particularly in their fresh morals. Thus the lamb says to the clumsy shearer "Your indecision is complete torture" (71). The last line of "The Flies and the Honey" (81) is "The flies realised their greed had brought them to a sticky end." Negatively, some stories get lost. "The House Full of Mice" (10), for example, needs the flour or the bag that has made this story interesting in other versions. Similarly, "The Cicada and the Fox" needs the clever reference to dung to be more than it is here. There is a T of C at the beginning. I find it curious that the two versions of this book that I bought have a difference of some $1.20 in price, and they come from the same seller.

2009 Aesop's Fables. Aesop; George Fyler Townsend. Illustrations from Tenniel? Paperbound. Beijing: World Publishing Corporation. 15.80 Yuan from Hangzhou Wholesale City Trading Co., Oct., '10.

This is a very curious book. It is quite attractive, with a pliable plastic binding and covers and a cover displaying in color a peacock, rooster, and another fowl. Inside it surprises me in several ways. It presents its fables in categories I have not seen used before to give divisions to a book: Ass (24 fables); Bats (3 fables); Birds, and so on. "Birds" turns out to be a folder rather than a file; it contains subheadings of "Birds of Various Kinds" (37 fables); "Crow"; "Daw"; "Eagle"; and "Lark." Bull, Camel, Cat, Deer, Dog, and Fish/Ocean Dweller follow in order. Each fable is presented in a Townsend text with Townsend and Perry numbers. These are easily available on Laura Gibbs' website; even a nice index is available there that serves as a T of C for Townsend and for Perry, respectively. In fact, there are appendices offering each of these lists -- but no cross references. They are simply lists of the numbers and titles according to Townsend and then according to Perry, respectively. There are cartoons of a Disneyesque character for each "chapter" beginning. The cross-eyed lion on 179 is brushing his teeth. There are also some small designs for selected fables. These designs look to me like they are from Tenniel. For several fables near the end of the book, there are references rather to L'Estrange and to Chambry than to Townsend. Designs mark the top of each page: "Aesop's Fables" with a vine of grapes on the left-hand pages and "Aesop's Fables" with a lion and fox on right-hand pages. Where did the categories of this book come from? And who is the audience for this sort of book? 

2009 Aesop's Fables. Xun wang fei ji. Paperbound. Miyun: Tsinghua University Press. 25 Yuan from Hangzhou Wholesale City Trading Co., Oct., '10.

One Chinese bookshop on eBay proclaims of this book "This book includes two hundred stories. There are many famous stories, for example, wolf coming, farmer and snake, and so on. This book causes great effect on Chinese people. It is translated into 100 languages and more English editions." I am delighted that fables are having a great effect on Chinese people! In fact there are here 243 fables on 256 pages, with a T of C at the beginning. As is frequent in present-day Chinese paperbacks, text-page foredges are decorated with an identical repeating pattern and the covers are heavy paper folded back to create a flap. The page layout of this book uses a distinctive format. The title of the fable in English is at the top center of each page around a design and set of Chinese characters. A consecutive number of this fable and its title in Chinese and in English is centered above three elements. First, at the left, there is a standard design including two Chinese characters inside of circles; around these are animals and human figures in silhouette. To the right of this standard element is a set of about three to six lines of Chinese characters. Under that text is the English text of the fable. At the outside bottom is a page number in a circle with a printer's design outside of that circle. The texts here seem to be taken from the Joseph Jacobs edition of 1894. There are a few printer's designs along the way, perhaps echoing the particular fable. An example presents the crab and its mother on 41. 

2009 Aesop's Fables. A New Translation by V.S. Vernon Jones. Illustrations by Arthur Rackham. Introduction by G.K. Chesterton. Paperbound. Mineola, NY: Dover. $17.99 from Powell's, Portland, July, '11.

Here is a "Dover (2009) unabridged republication of the edition published by William Heinemann, London, and Doubleday, Page, and Co., New York, in 1912," as the verso of the title-page says. Surprisingly, the back cover has the same sentence but a date of 1917. This is a book I would consider using in a future fable course. It is compact -- so compact, in fact, that it is heavy -- and has lovely renditions of Rackham's colored illustrations. The back cover claims that there are thirteen full-color and fifty-three black-and-white illustrations. My hat is off to Dover for producing this lovely book!

2009 Aesop's Fables. S. K. Prasoon. Illustrations by S. Suman. Paperbound. New Delhi: Unicorn Books. $9 from Amit Kakrania, Rajasthan, India, through eBay, Sept., '12.

This paperback book has an unusual shape: about 4¼" wide by 8½" high. The cover features a dramatic picture of BW. Inside are forty fables, as the beginning T of C shows. Up to 74, the fables are two-pages in length. Several three-page fables begin on 74 with "An Election Meeting." This fable is new to me. The birds want to elect a king; the birds of prey do not agree. In fact, they swoop down on the election and devour the would-be electors. Since then there is no movement to elect a king of birds. Each fable receives a line-drawing. A small detail-element of the illustration is presented or developed as a tailpiece. New to me among these traditional fables is "Courage" on 36. City dogs repel invading country dogs until one of the latter stands firm; soon enough the city dogs give in and flee, and the country dogs can invade the city. In "Self-exaltation" (44), the ass attacks the wolves without the lion as he had with the lion; this time the wolves tear him apart. "The Source of Wisdom" (48) does the sharing of booty differently from most versions. Here the wolf, fox, and lion catch a stag, a lamb, and a hare. The wolf, asked to divide them up, assigns the stag to the lion, the lamb to himself, and the hare to the fox. The lion, angry, kills him. The fox then assigns the stag to the lion as breakfast, the lamb to the lion for lunch, and the hare to the lion for dinner. "Where did you get that wisdom?" "The source of my wisdom is that dead wolf!" "Destructive Greed" (56) tells of a landlord who likes a tree's fruit so much that he wants it dug up and transplanted in his own yard. Plenty of people advise him not to do it. He does it anyway, and the tree dies. "Theft and Watchman" (58) takes an unusual approach to the old fable of the blind and lame. Here the two team up to steal fruit when they are supposed to be watchmen! "Adjust with Time" (77) presents a king who can laugh over the adjustment he has to make. Earlier, it took several camels to carry his kitchen. Now one dog, which cannot shake off the pot into which he put his head, carries his whole kitchen. A small colored illustration of this fable is on the back cover. MM on 90 features a young woman carrying eggs rather than milk.

2009 Aesop's Fables: A Classic Illustrated Edition. Compiled by Nate Ripperton. Illustrated by Milo Winter. Paperbound. Beijing: Western Classics of Literature for Children: Central Compilation and Translation Press: Nanhai Publishing House. $14.99 from books-shopping-store through eBay, Sept., '10.

This is a curious book. It takes 288 pages and offers generally one fable per page, complete with a monochrome presentation of a Milo Winter illustration for many of the fables, taken straight from The Aesop for Children, which is acknowledged on the book's final page. There are also many full-page monochrome illustrations. One notes that it is a Chinese book mostly from one line on the cover and the final two pages containing first the other books in the series and then the bibliographical specifics of this book. The editors have chosen well for a book from which to learn and enjoy English! 

2009 Aesop's Fables for Children: A new look at ancient wisdom. Edited by Amy O'Donnell. Paperbound. La Vergne, TN?: Black Oyster Publishing Company. $11.03 from Better World Books, April, '11.

Here is a curious book. A quick glance at the back reveals that it is a "print upon demand" book, printed like so many others in La Vergne, TN, shortly after it was ordered. Here the printing date is April 4, 2011. I had ordered the book on April 3, 2011. Unlike some other print upon demand books, it has its own cover featuring orange flowers. The next surprise -- for me, at least -- comes in the author's stated purpose. "Most of all I hope to make a new copy available so the reader can re-live the joy of these fables learned from early youth" (8). That is as much introduction as a reader will get. Fables start from there on 9 and run through 100, where they stop abruptly. There is no T of C, and there are no illustrations. A curious person might ask what the editor did for this book. 

2009 Aesop's Fables in Latin: Ancient Wit and Wisdom from the Animal Kingdom. Laura Gibbs. Illustrations by Francis Barlow. Paperbound. Mundelein, IL: Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers. $29.07 from Amazon.com, April, '10.

This is a fine book! It is worth the rather high cost for a paperback. It is built around eighty intelligible Latin fables by Robert Codrington from Francis Barlow's 1867 edition. Forty of the fables are illustrated with Barlow's illustrations. For each fable, Gibbs offers a short introduction that offers both hints about meaning and references to fables presenting related themes and animals. For each fable there is a one-paragraph grammar review. Along with the text come vocabulary and comments. Arranged around the book are helpful short proverbial slogans bearing on the fable at hand. At the front of the book is a list of frequent vocabulary a reader would do well to know. In her introduction Laura Gibbs offers students a helpful and realistic method for understanding a Latin text. I look forward to using this book with my Latin students near the end of their intensive course this summer!

2009 Aisopos Fabels. Vertaling Hein L. van Dolen. Illustrations from the Medici Aesop by Gherardo di Giovanni. Nawoord Gert-Jan van Dijk. Paperbound. Nijmegen: Uitgeverij Vantilt. Gift of Gert-Jan van Dijk, July, '09.

Here is an impressive book of fables! Congratulations to Gert-Jan and his colleagues for a job well done! Van Dolen's foreword recognizes the thirty-two pages of illustrations taken from the so-called "Medici Aesop." They are presented in two sections: 49-64 and 97-112. A line at the bottom of the page of each illustration nicely gives its subject and the most appropriate fable. The illustration on 97 gives rise to the man transformed into an ant whose image we find on this book's front cover. Gert-Jan's afterword seems to cover the genre well. I would love to hear him do a summary like this in English! My hat is off to the translator, since he takes on no less than 182 fables here. The beginning T of C seems to show an alphabetical structure for the stories, which are clearly moralized. They in their turn have references to the appropriate illustrations. This is a well conceived and well constructed book!

2009 Australian Fables. Written by Ron Jensz. Illustrated by Anneke Nes. Hardbound. VIC, Australia: Brolga Publishing. AUD$22.71 from ABC Shop Order Centre, Sydney, NSW, Sept., '10.

Here are thirty two-page fables, each presenting a few paragraphs of prose on the left-hand page and a full-page colored illustration on the right-hand page. The texts are original and creative. All have to deal with native Australian fauna. The morals are generally well related to the narrative. The illustrations are lively and colorful. They remind me of WPA art at its best. Among the best examples is "The Spider at the Centre of the Universe" (6): of course a spider thinks that the center of his web is the center of the universe! Two typically strong illustrations accompany "The Very Unhappy Kookaburra" (10) and "The Corroboree Frog That Joined The Dance" (32). One of my favorites is "The Ducklings, The Dog And The Portly Man" (52). A delightful book! 

2009 Boeddha's Beestenboek. Maria van Donkelaar & Martine van Rooijen. Geïllustreerd door Moniek Peek. Hardbound. Rotterdam: Asoka. €24.95 from Boekhandel Stevensterk, Utrecht, June, '09.

After an introduction, there are thirty-four Jataka stories here. This book was a pleasant find during a delightful afternoon of book-hunting with Gert-Jan van Dijk as we played hookey from the Renard Conference in Utrecht. The books had to be shipped to me in Heidelberg, but that was fine. Like most good editions of Jataka stories these days, the authors work from Cowell's English edition of Jataka stories done in London in 1956. The illustrations are delightful. Might they be watercolors? A quick favorite is "The Fish and the Turtle" (18-19). The fish looking at itself in the mirror on 19 is excellent! "Die Apenbrug" is another beautifully pictured -- and well known -- Jataka. The monkey who forms a bridge with his body is well depicted on 54. Again, the two not-smart fish caught in the net on 79 tell the story beautifully. Both illustrations for TT on 114 and 116 are again beautifully done. This is a very sturdy book!

2009 But Who Will Bell the Cats? Cynthia von Buhler. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Boston/NY: Houghton Mifflin Books for children: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. $13.48 from MW Books, Ltd, Renmore, Galway, Ireland, Dec., '12.

The dust-jacket mentions appropriately "Cynthia von Buhler's work has been compared to a trip down an ornate rabbit hole." The artist created rooms by hand out of wood, with walls made by plaster. She painted characters in oils on gessoed paper, cut them out, and placed them in the sets. She then photographed the scenes. Notice the "s" that gets onto the last word in the title's question. It is a clue that the story takes a different turn. Aesop's version is told on the first page with the usual question "But who will bell the cat?" Here in this story a princess pampers her eight cats, while a mouse and a brown bat live as friends in the drafty cellar. Mouse's first attempt at belling -- with armor and a sword -- fails so miserably that the cats play ping-pong with him until the bat distracts them. In their next attempt, they dress up as a dog but are soon spotted. This time the cats play Mouse Floor Hockey until the bat distracts them. A third attempt results in preparation of bat and mouse pies. Here the princess intervenes, washes them off, gives them a fruit-basket, and kisses each on the nose. Inspired by her kindness, the mouse wraps a birthday gift for her. The birthday gift is eight bell-necklaces for the cats. It is the princess that bells the cats! In the final picture, the bat and the mouse are at last enjoying the good life upstairs. Aesop's text appears on several of the scraps that appear during the story. I am surprised that I had not heard of this book in this country. I got it instead from a bookshop in Ireland! The book seems not to reveal where it was printed. 

2009 De wolf en het lam en 10 andere fabels van Aesopus. Getekend en opnieuw verteld door Eric Carle. First edition, first printing. Hardbound. Haarlem: Uitgeverj J.H. Gottmer. €5 from Utrecht, July, '09.

Here is a Dutch reprint of The Rabbit and the Turtle: Aesop's Fables Retold and Illustrated by Eric Carle, first printed in 1976 with a different cover. The information facing the title-page seems to indicate that some of the stories contained here appeared earlier in De aap en de vos in 1980. The illustrations -- full right-hand pages facing text on the left-hand pages -- are particularly sharp here. As I mentioned when I first encountered Carle's work, his art is both lively and playful. FC (26) and GA (28) offer excellent illustrations from this fine piece of work. The crow holds a sausage in his beak, a plate with another sausage in one foot, and a knife and fork in his hands, while a wine-bottle and glass sit perched in the tree! Fox and child sit waiting patiently on a bench below. (That same fox and child appear on the title-page.) It is good to see a talented artist like Carle reprinted elsewhere!

2009 English Stories of Wisdom IV: Aesop's Fables (Chinese). Lisi. Illustrations by Dongli. Paperbound. Beijing: Nanhai Publishing House. 19 Yuan from Hangzhou Wholesale City Trading Co., Nov., '10.

This simple book presents 135 fables bilingually on facing pages, with the English and some vocabulary notes on the left and the Chinese on the right. There are frequent simple designs along the way: pictures, for example, of the animals involved in a fable but not necessarily of the fable's scene itself. The paper is cheap, and the covers are heavier paper folded back. Both front and back covers present a cartoon frog wearing a mortarboard. There is a T of C at the front. 290 pages. 

2009 Esopo e la Volpe: Iconografia delle favole dal IV a.C al XX secolo. a cura di Paola Pallottino. Paperbound. Modena: Museo della Figurina: Franco Cosimo Panini. Gift of Paola Pallottino, May, '09.

This is a beautiful book presenting an exhibition right up my alley. I am so sorry that I have missed the exhibition this past spring! But now I want to visit the museum's extensive collections that offer so much on fables. After shorter chapters presenting and introducing this volume, there are three major sections: "From Aesop to La Fontaine" by Paola Pallottino; "The Iconographic Fortunes of Five Fables" (FC, WL, WC, GA, and FS); and "Aesop in Picture Cards" by Maria Giovanna Battistini. There is closing bibliography, and I am happily surprised to see the Carlson fable collection link listed there. There is also an enclosed poster tracing images of the five selected fables through some thirty publications from the fourteenth century to 1929. The first of the large chapters is a lovely walk through the history of fable book illustration, supplemented by frequent illustrations. This chapter may pay more attention than is usual to Italian contributions, but I for one welcome that proud representation, particularly in the earliest decades of publishing. Pallottino points out (27) that Italian cities produced fifteen Aesop editions between 1476 and 1496. The five individual-fable histories typically start with cathedral doors -- since these five fables were thought to be particularly relevant to Christian preaching -- and the Bayeux Tapestry and then run through an extensive history of the image in recent centuries. My hat is off to Pallottino and her associates in this section. They "cover" the wide field of illustration by a judicious and diverse selection, using five fables to give a much greater coverage to the history of fable illustration than any one fable could give. I had not realized that FS is featured in Breughel's painting of "Flemish Proverbs." For me, the final third showing the rich tradition of fable cards is especially valuable. I find only two series here from which I do not have at least one card: a Bon Marché booklet of 1906 and a series for Amattler Chocolates of about 1910. I appreciate this section because the information about how many cards were in each series and who were the artists behind them is new to me and invaluable. Now I cannot wait to visit the museum What a lovely and refeshing book!

2009 Esopo: Fábulas Completas.  Introduction by Rosario de la Iglesia.  Paperbound.  Madrid: Clásicos de la Literatura:  Edimat Libros.  $8.55 from MovieMars through eBay, March, '15.

Here are 183 numbered fables on 160 pages without illustrations but with an introduction.  There is a T of C at the end.   Amazon in Spain says this about the book: "Featuring timeless tales, this collection contains the complete works of Aesop's classic fables.  "Presentando cuentos fundamentales, esta collecion contiene las obras completas de las fabulas de Esopo.""

2009 Fables (1860): Jean de La Fontaine.  (Elizur Wright).  Paperbound.  NY: General Books LLC.  See 1860/2009.

2009 Fables de La Fontaine sur des airs de jazz. Illustrations de Sébastien Pelon. Hardbound. Paris: Flammarion: Père Castor. €19.81 from Amazon.fr, Oct., '11.

In 2006, Flammarion: Père Castor published Le loup et l'agneau et 3 autres fables de La Fontaine, using illustrations by Sébastien Pelon. Here is a new large-format book using new illustrations by Pelon for some twenty-eight La Fontaine fables. One special feature of this publication is that it offers, by means of an audio CD, jazz music for twelve of the fables. The titles for the music are clever, e.g., "Le blues de la Cigale," "La fugue du Renard," and "La marche de la Tortue." Each of the fables gets a two-page spread. I find the illustrations, integrated around the text, to be the second distinctive feature of this publication. The pictures are deceptively simple and engaging. I write "deceptively" because they show unusual insight and imagination. The rabbit relaxes in a hammock with his tennis shoes swung over the branch from which he swings (10). TT's illustration has four different phases in one picture, from the turtle's clutch of the stick in mid-air to a cat's cautious search to see if there is life in this shell on the ground (21). The flight of the busybody fly around the coach and its horses is suggested by a line through and around the whole group (24-25). Raminagrobis wears a priestly collar (27). The milkmaid's spilling milk turns into the future possessions she was dreaming of (33). The caught stag's bent posture shows how he is being restrained as the off-scene dogs close in on him (37). TB features two wonderfully expressive human faces (42-3). "The Fox and the Goat" illustration includes only the the bottom of the fox's tail, as the goat looks up to it, after he has helped the fox out of the well (45). A last pair of pages presents the musical score for "La marche de la Tortue."

2009 Fables from the Largetooth Animal Refuge.  Written by Lorraine Hawksworth.  Illustrated by Adam Guzy.  Paperbound.  Bloomington, IN: AuthorHouse.  $15.45 from Amazon.com, August, '14.  

This is a story in thirteen chapters, strong on the imaginative and sentimental side, about a young woman born with the gift of communicating with animals.  She grows up to create a refuge for sick and orphaned animals and acts regularly as a rescuer for animals in difficult situations.  The book has a strong sense of animals' character and especially their pain and suffering.  The author says of herself on the back cover "I could not have volunteered at the local SPCA for I would have brought all of them home!"  Printed in August of 2014 on demand.

2009 Fables: Jean de La Fontaine. Illustrations de Joanna Boillat. Hardbound. Paris: Éditions Gründ. €15.16 from Lecume des Pages, St. Germain, Paris, July, '12.

Here is a thoroughly contemporary presentation of La Fontaine in 216 large, lovely, and heavy pages. From four to eight fables per book are included. Watch out for the clever title-pages for each book. A character in silhouette looks over at the list of fables to be presented. The pictures, outspokenly modern, present animal heads with human bodies. GA is presented in two female insects sitting back to back in chairs, one enjoying coffee and the other working on a computer (7). I cannot even be sure which is cicada and which is ant! FC is presented as a case of conversants, perhaps even psychologist and client (8-9). The rats in TMCM sit at a modest table with food and glasses of wine (14-15). One of the most captivating images is for BC: three rows of six mice -- all apparently identical and identically dressed -- sit on chairs with their hands in their laps (25). Similar is the illustration for FK (49): are those look-alike frogs voting or waving "hello"? The weasel that got into a granary is a sleek model type with red shoes and bonbons (58-59). One of the great pictures of the whole book is the farmer ready to wield the sickle himself (77). Another great illustration is that of the monkey elected to rule the animals (101). "Les Animals malades de la Peste" (116-19) is wonderfully presented through a first black-and-white silhouette of board members and then a colored, personalized version of the same with the "guilty" ass inserted. The milkmaid is turned into a shopper who stumbles and drops her bags and purse (122-23). What she stumbles upon is an economic graph! One more of many good illustrations: "Les Deux Coqs" is presented as a cocktail party (124-25). Watch out for the menacing vulture who looms up on the far right! This artist understands La Fontaine wonderfully! 

2009 Fables: Jean de La Fontaine. Illustrées par Brigitte Susini. First edition. Hardbound. Paris: Hachette Livre/Gautier-Languereau. €12.78 from Gibert Jeune, Paris, July, '12.

Here is the 2009 original behind a smaller book published two years later in a different format by the same publisher. That was a small 32-page paperback about 6¼" x 7" containing thirteen fables. This is a 125-page large-format hardbound book measuring 9¼" x 11¼" presenting sixty-two fables. There is a T of C at the beginning and an AI at the end of the book. The illustrations are the same, though in smaller format, for those fables represented in the later booklet. The fable text takes one page or, in two cases, two. The single text pages are all left-hand pages. The right-hand page then presents a full-page colored illustration. I am surprised at FC Do we not need a crow in a tree to make this fable work (9)? The illustration for GA (11) is surprisingly wistful and contemplative. The frog in OF has an overblown belly and chest that is wonderfully comic (15). FG (25) is cleverly shown from above and makes a fine front-cover illustration. In the illustration for "The Lion Going to War," Susini cleverly hides the courier rabbit, just as the other animals overlook him (79). The stag with horns caught in the branches is holding a mirror (83). The milkmaid on 99 is losing not only her pail of milk, shown here in mid fall, but some of her eggs besides. There is a great Grippemenaud on 101! Other fine illustrations include "The Bear and the Gardener" (105) and "The Cat and the Two Sparrows" (118). 

2009 Fables from the Misty Mountains: Folklore of the Nagas.  Stories retold by Rahul Karmakar.  Various artists.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  Kohima, Nagaland: Government of Ngaland: Red River/LBS Publications.  Gift of Sunny Augustine, S.J., May, '14.  

Here is an impressive book: sturdy, well produced, and beautifully designed.  I read perhaps the first dozen stories.  Several at least approach being fables; perhaps a sign is that they, by contrast with other stories here, have morals attached to them.  Such are "Fire and Water" (14); "How the Fox Became Red" (18); "The Right Choice" (22); and "Cunning Fox" (31).  The last of these uses the same ploy as Brer Rabbit when the culprit fox suggests his own punishment: greasing his tail!  The eight monochrome illustrators are listed on 200.

2009 High-Interest/Low-Readability Today's Far-Fetched News. Sherrill B. Flora and Jo Browning-Wroe. Illustrated by Julie Anderson. Paperbound. Minneapolis, MN: Key Education Publishing Company. $29.98 from AwesomeBooks.com, June, '12.

The title goes on: "Ten Fables & Folktales Rewritten as High-Interest Front Page News Articles with Comprehension Activities and Audio CD." Whew! Here are ten stories written for students who are reading below grade level or have disabilities or are discouraged about reading. The stories are written between early first-grade and early-third grade reading levels. Three of the stories are fables. GA reverses the traditional ending by having the ants give the grasshopper a job. As one ant is quoted to say, "Lazy Legs may be rude (and lazy), but oh, can he sing!" (5). The second story presents "The Fox and the Goat." Its headline reads "Gary Goat Beats Fred Fox in Court!" The two seem to be going off to a party after the trial. "Let's hope Gary knows what he's doing" (9). "Stone Soup" forms the basis of newspaper #6. Its headline is "Chef Leaves Town--Takes Magic Stone with Him!" (27). Two or three pages of activities follow each newspaper. The cartoons are adequate for this presentation. This seems like a clever idea for lagging readers, but will they get interested in these old stories? The accompanying audio CD apparently presents these articles in the form of news broadcasts after a little musical introduction each time. Clever! 

2009 I Once Was a Monkey: Stories Buddha Told. Jeanne M. Lee. Fifth printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: Farrar, Straus and Giroux. See 1999/2009.

2009 Jean de La Fontaine: Fables Choisies. Choix des fables, notes et Carnet de lecture par Virginie Fauvin et Marie-Eugénie Barru. Illustrations de Bertrand Bataille. Paperbound. Paris: Folio Junior: Textes Classiques: Gallimard Jeunesse. £7.36 from AwesomeBooks.com, June, '12.

Here is one of those many books the French keep creating for their young people to get acquainted with fables. This is a step up from many of them in several regards. It includes original illustrations, including an excellent colored illustration of TH for its cover. My favorite among the full-page black-and-white illustrations has a human with a fox's head standing on top of the head of a human goat in the middle of a well (98). Another fine piece shows the retired rat with a huge belly reclining against a Swiss cheese (62). This book further gathers its fables into six good categories: Flatteurs et hypocrites; Affamés et gloutons; Sots et orgueilleux; Animaux en guerre; Bons et mauvais conseillers; and Femmes et fables. Finally it adds a delightful "Carnet de lecture," a notebook with a particularly helpful last section. The earlier sections of this "carnet" cover La Fontaine; fable; what we can learn from La Fontaine's fables; and the picture of animals that the fables offer. The last section is "Une fable à travers les âges" (135). It offers multiple versions of GA: Aesop; Raymond Queneau; Pierre Perret; and Francoise Sagan. Good stuff! 

2009 Keiserens nye klaer.  Hans Christian Andersen; oversatt og gjenfortalt av Conrad Howard.  Illustrert av Van Gool.  Hardbound.  Oslo: De Beste Eventyrene:  Trapes Forlag.  120 Kroner from Norli, Oslo, July, '14.  

First created and published by Creations for Children International in Belgium.  This was a desperate purchase at a fine new book shop in Oslo when I seemed unable to find any fable books at all.  A later visit to Oslo would change that perception.  In the meantime, the saleswoman was very understanding: "These Norwegians don't know what fables are.  We don't get many fable books here."  In this version, the Kaiser gets down to a nightshirt.  The title-page is clever by hiding him from our view behind a full-size mirror into which he must be gazing.  The artistry follows the style of comics or bandes dessinées.  His deceivers seem to be a fox and a duck, but then apparently all the townsfolk except the Kaiser are animals.  The minister and servants, for example, seem to be dogs.  The child here seems to be a male, and his comment brings laughter out of the population.  What I can perceive of the book does not rate high marks.

2009 Kleine Maus - Grosse Stadt. Simon Prescott; aus dem Englischen von Therese Hochhuth. Simon Prescott. Hardbound. Neumühlen: Hamburg: edelkids Gmbh. €12.95 from Buchhandlung und Antiquariat Schöbel, Heidelberg, July, '09.

First published in 2009 by Magi Productions in Great Britain. This is a lively if not terribly coherent retelling of TMCM. Facing the title-page we read an invitation letter from Stadtmaus to Landmaus. Why then does Landmaus have to wander so long when she reaches the city? The pictures are cute throughout -- and often dramatic, as when Landmaus first encounters the city's tall buildings. Both pages are used together in portrait-over-portrait fashion to create the impression of immense height in the skyscrapers. The appearance of Stadtmaus seems to happen by chance, and of course in the nick of time. This version does a fine job of presenting the appeal of the city, especially in the pictures presented together of a museum, cheese shop, and cinema. Landmaus seems to go nowhere without her backpack and scarf, whereas Stadtmaus is a t-shirt-and-shorts kind of fellow. "Es gibt eben keinen besseren Ort als das eigene Zuhause."

2009 La Fontaine: Selected Fables.  Translated by Robert LoMascolo?  #22 of 33, signed by the maker.  Hardbound.  Union Springs, NY: Excelsior: The Press of Robert LoMascolo.  $200 from Vamp and Tramp, Booksellers, Birmingham, AL, Nov., '13.  

Let me start with the press's own description:  "5½" x 7¾"; 30 pages. Monotype composition with over 300 handset typographic ornaments. Letterpress printed with 8 linoleum illustrations tipped in. Hot foil stamping. Printed on machine-made cotton paper. Illustrated free end pages and end papers. Flatback binding paper over boards with title in gilt on spine."  Then I will add the maker's own description:  "This volume of La Fontaine was principally inspired by the work of Bruce Rogers and Fredric Warde. The ornaments, a favorite of both Rogers and Warde, were originally designed by Robert Granjon and used in his configuration on the end sheets. The linoleum cut illustrations in this volume are based on Florentine woodcuts from the 1500s. This book is highly unusual in that all of the type and ornaments have been cast and printed from metal type, Centaur, designed by Rogers, Arrighi, designed by Warde, and the ornaments by Granjon, were all freshly cast specifically for this volume in Monotype."  As one of only 33 copies, it is a real treasure!  It is a virtue and not a defect of the book that the author had to correct by hand his own typo "madecotton" in the closing colophon.  I cannot establish who was the translator, but it seems not to be Wright, Spector, or Moore.  Perhaps LoMascolo did it himself.  The seven fables presented here are: "The Raven Who Would Rival The Eagle," "The Ass Carrying Relics," "The Acorn & The Pumpkin," "The Raven & The Fox," "The Two Bulls & The Frog," "The Thieves & The Ass," and "The Miller, His Son & The Ass."  My prize for the best illustration goes to the first of the two for MSA, which shows the ass hanging by his tied hooves from a pole.  I was very fortunate to learn of and have a chance to get this lovely book!

2009 La Tortue et le Lièvre: Une Fable d'Esope/The Tortoise and the Hare: An Aesop's Fable. Réécrite par Angela McAllister. Gravures sur bois de Jonathan Heale. First edition, apparent first printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. London: Frances Lincoln Children's Books: Frances Lincoln Limited. $14.98 from Better World Books, Sept., '10.

Here is one of three bilingual reworkings of Frances Lincoln's 2001 version that is only in English. The French here appears above the English, and both languages complement the very large illustration on the facing page. Let me include comments from that listing. This is a landscape-formatted, unpaginated, well-executed large book. McAllister is careful in her English telling of the tale. I say "English" because a few elements like "elevenses" might look strange to readers in the USA. In McAllister's telling, the tortoise has a strategy from the start, as is clear when he rejects the hare's suggestion of a short race to the hedge and back. "'That's not far enough,' said Tortoise. 'We'll race down the lane, past the mill and across the meadow to the bridge.'" The mill is important, because the tortoise knows that the hare will find carrots there, just as the meadow will invite a nap in the hot midday sun. Perhaps the best of Heale's good colored woodcuts depicts the smiling tortoise as he comes upon the carrot tops lying scattered at the mill. The sleeping tortoise meanwhile dreams of leaping over the moon, while all the rabbits cheer. Of course that cheer is for the tortoise already struggling toward the bridge. The rabbits cheer again for the hare when he promises after the race not to boast any more. The story closes with the tired tortoise asking the hare to carry him home. This book gives a good example of how a single fable should be told when it is extended to fill a book. 

2009 La Tortuga y la Liebre: Una Fábula de Esopo: The Tortoise and the Hare: An Aesop's Fable.  Contada por Angela McAllister.  Con grabados en madera de Jonathan Heale.  First edition, apparent first printing.  Hardbound.  London: Frances Lincoln Limited.  See 2001/09.

2009 Les Fables de la Fontaine. Racontées par Richard Bohringer. Illustrées par Nadine Forster. Hardbound. Paris: Mes Plus Beaux Contes: Une Histoire d'Enfant: Éditions Tom Pousse. €9.90 from Paris, July, '09.

Here is another large-format book of La Fontaine's fables for children. One of the special features of this book is that its publisher also provides mp3 files ""à télécharger gratuitement sur internet." In the book, fables get a two-page spread, usually with two to four good colored pictures. The cicada here is all dolled up for winter. I am unsure in what Bohringer's "raconter" consists, since the written verses are La Fontaine's. The fourteen fables here are FS, WL, GA, GGE, TMCM, OF, FC, "Le Coche et la Mouche," "Le Cochet, le Chat et le Souriceau," "Le Chat, la Belette et le petit Lapin," OR, "Le Laboureur et ses Enfants," "Le Héron," and TH. At the end there is a catalogue of animals with a description of the characteristics of each. The mp3s can be played at www.agedejouer.com. They offer an excellent vocal rendition of the fables, along with a text whose highlight travels with the narration. Difficult words have a link to a good brief definition. Well done!

2009 Les Fables de La Fontaine.  Textes réécrits par Jeanne Moineau et Agnès Vandewiele.  Illustrations de Jean-Noël Rochut.  Paperbound.  Paris: Les Éditions Philippe Auzou.  $6.90 from Marie Gervais, St.-Urbain-Premier, Quebec, Canada, through eBay, April, '14.  

There are thirteen fables here in this moderate-sized paperback of 31 pages.  Several of the artist's contributions are excellent.  Do not miss, for example, the two-stage presentation of FS across the pre-title pages.  In the illustration for GGE on 7, both the action of dropping the golden egg and the scornful look of the hen are well rendered.  There is also a great expression on the face of the City Rat on 21.  The texts seem to be standard La Fontaine texts.  I am not sure therefore what "Textes réécrits" means.  The cover is a rendition of TH strong on sepia tones.

2009 Les Fables de la Fontaine mises en scène par Dedieu: Le Cerf se Voyant dans l'Eau et Autres Fables.  Avec Pop-Ups von Thierry Dedieu.  Hardbound.  Paris: Editions du Seuil.  $0.10 from Goodwill of Silicon Valley, July, '14.  

Here is the Seuil original behind "Der Hirsch, der sich im Wasser spiegelt: Die schönsten Fabeln von La Fontaine" from Knesebeck in 2014.  It is also related to "Livre II: Les Fables de la Fontaine mises en scène par Dedieu."  I wrote of the French edition that I was ordering several of his books in French and German.  Here is the first arrival!  The pop-ups are again exquisite.  Dedieu's special gift is to create depth by getting four or five layers into the pop-up picture.  Among his best efforts is the title pop-up, which plays with reflection and dimensionality. The background of DW suggests a net.  That suggestion is perfect for this fable about confinement and freedom. Another great use of dimensionality occurs in "The Rabbits and the Frogs," as the frogs leaping into the water become the backdrop for our viewing of the rabbit.  In each case, the fable text is presented on the left and the right of the central pop-up picture.  Exquisite work!  The book has a solid feel often lacking in pop-up books.  This French version costs $23.90 less than the German version!

2009 Les Fables de la Fontaine mises en scène par Dedieu: Le Corbeau et le Renard et Autres Fables.  (Thierry) Dedieu.  Hardbound.  Paris: Seuil.  €17.35 from Amazon.fr, Sept., '14. 

Here is my sixth Dedieu pop-up book, the third French.  This is again exquisite work.  The six fables presented here are FC; GA; OF; WC; LM, and TMCM.  The hint of the outside world in TMCM is good, as is the movable proximity of frog to ox in OF and of fox to crow in FC.  In each case, the fable text is presented on the left and the right of the central pop-up picture.  As in the other five Dedieu copies I have, the book is beautifully put together.

2009 Les Fables de la Fontaine mises en scène par Dedieu: Le Lièvre et la Tortue et Autres Fables.  (Thierry) Dedieu.  Hardbound.  Paris: Seuil.  €17.35 from Amazon.fr, Sept., '14.  

Here is one of those little surprises for a book collector.  In 2008 Seuil published this book, apparently without a title-page.  The cover was the closest thing to a title-page, and the cover read: "Livre II: Les Fables de la Fontaine mises en scène par Dedieu."  Now there is a title-page, and both on the title-page and on the cover the title has changed to "Les Fables de la Fontaine mises en scène par Dedieu."  "Livre II" is gone.  The cover now adds a sub-title: Le Lièvre et la Tortue et Autres Fables.  The year of publication is one year later.  The earlier version included bibliographical material on the back cover.  This material has been removed from there in this later version and put onto the new last page created by freeing an endpaper at the back as at the front.  Might one conjecture that a first and second isolated Dedieu fable pop-up book did so well that a series was suddenly planned, and numbering the various members of the series became too tricky?  Would it not be easier to identify them rather by specifying the first fable?  As I wrote earlier, this book contains six exquisite pop-ups: TH, OR, "The Fox and the Goat," "The Heron," FS, and WL.  Dedieu's special gift is to create depth by getting four or five layers into the pop-up picture.  Among his best efforts is "The Fox and the Goat," which gives a goat's-eye-view of the fox appearing at the top of the well.  In each case, the fable text is presented on the left and the right of the central pop-up picture.  Exquisite work!

2009 Les Fables de La Fontaine: Tome 1. Illustrations de Mylène Villeneuve. Hardbound. Quebec: Éditions Ada Inc. CAD$7.99 from Librairie de Tournefeuille, Quebec, through eBay, March, '11.

Here is a heavy book offering on some 320 pages half of La Fontaine's fables, each with a full-page colored illustration. An AI at the beginning is also a T of C. I am trying to order Volume 2; this first volume presents those fables beginning with the letters A through J. This arrangement has a particular advantage: someone wanting to find a number of fables about one animal -- like the ass -- can find some of them grouped together here. Of course the character one seeks might be mentioned second in the title -- as in "The Horse and the Ass" -- and then one still has to seek elsewhere. The arrangement also has one unusual result: epilogues to Book 6 and to Book 11 appear next to each other in appropriate alphabetical order between titles involving "Enfouisseur" and "Faucon." I find the illustrations simple and dramatic. Is there a certain lack of definition inherent in this art medium? Are the illustrations computer-generated? Among the best of the illustrations are "The Eagle and the Owl" (13); SS (25); "The Donkey and the Lapdog" (29); "The Astronomer" (40); "The Cat and an Old Rat" (104); "The Cat and the Two Sparrows" (109); "The Horse and the Ass" (125); GA (146); "The Two Roosters" (176); "The Crow Wishing to Imitate the Eagle" (180); "The Curate and the Dead Man" (190); "The Daughter" (244); and "The Oyster and the Litigants" (300). I think "The Frog and the Rat" (269), although its illustration is nicely dramatic, gets the story wrong. This frog does not want to hang on to the cord! In the end, I wonder if this artistic style does not have a lot to do with the art of recent graphic novels and comic books.

2009 Les Fables de La Fontaine: 45 Fables. Christian Vandendaele. Hardbound. Pop Jeunesse: Editions Caramel: Editions LLC. $12.90 from Marie Gervais, St.-Urbain-Premier, Quebec, Canada, through eBay, July, '12.

This book picks up where a 2003 book left off. Both are published by the same publisher -- Caramel -- but this book is in a different series, Pop Jeunesse rather than SDP Le Livre Club. In that copy the cover is of soft material and the title is in italics. I began working on this book on the assumption that this was that same book in different trappings. The structure, size, and style are the same -- even the advertising words on the back-cover are the same -- but this is an extension of that book, with 45 different La Fontaine fables. Thus the cover here pictures not the fables of the 2003 volume but rather TH, OF, GA, FS, and TMCM, all from this volume. As I wrote there, this is a 94-page large-format book for children with lively illustrations and almost no bibliographical information. The AI on 94 confirms that there are forty-five of La Fontaine's fables here. A curious feature of this book remains the way in which each overlaid window with text on it does not obscure the underlying background scene. A particularly good touch comes in "Le Coche et la Mouche" (6-7), where one can trace the flight of the fly. One can also see the horse's aggravation with the fly! There is a great expression on the oak's face as he starts to give way in OR on 28-29. The just-kicked-wolf on 70 is well rendered. The cheese-house of the retired rat on 78-79 is a curious construction. Again the two ducks carry their stick above the AI. Every fable here gets a two-page spread. Slick art, this time with a hard cover. 

2009 Les Fables de Roland: Les Animaux d'Esope.  Cernuschi.  Hardbound.  Nimes, France: SDP Le Livre Club.  $30.31 from Kbooks, Scarborough, ON, Canada, through eBay, Sept., '13.  

"With this book of six puzzles, learn to read while having fun."  This "livre-puzzle" offers three Aesopic fables related through pages six of which are picture puzzles.  Under the "puzzle" section of this catalogue, I offer pictures of the cover, featuring GA, and of one scene from "The Two Asses."  Other fables here are "The Weasel and the Chickens" and "The Dog and His Master."  It is curious that the fables pictured on the two covers, GA and TMCM, do not appear in the book. The book itself is sturdy and well made.  It is of course rare to see the French featuring Aesop for fables.  I list this book among both books and puzzles.

2009 Les Philo-Fables pour Vivre Ensemble.  Michel Piquemal.  Illustrated by Philippe Lagautrière.  Paperbound.  Paris: Albin Michel Jeunesse.  $11.63 from French Language Books through Amazon, Oct., '15.

A first edition of this work was published by Albin Michel in 2007.  This book picks up where "Les Philo-Fables" left off in 2003.  Piquemal writes in the preface that that book's effort had had significant success.  Enthusiastic respondents have made him aware of other rich resources, including the "Panchatantra" and Krylov's fables.  So here is a new collection of Philo-Fables, but this time oriented to living together.  This time I sampled the first dozen or so and find them well chosen and engaging.  If anything, they rely even more on traditional fable materials.  "The Fisherman and the Man of Affairs" (11) has a wonderful repeated line "Mais pour quoi faire?" and a fine climax, when the man of affairs articulates his most ultimate purpose -- "so that you can rest."  The fisherman answers "That is just what I am now going to do" (instead of doing all those things we just went through).  "The End of the World" is the story of the rabbit who experiences heaven falling and starts a panicked flight (24).  "The Horse and the Ass" is the familiar fable that teaches that egotism can sometimes hurt the person protecting himself.  BW is presented as an old French folktale (38).  BS is presented as an African parable (48).  Again, each story has some catch-words above it.  And each has a reflection titled "Dans l'atelier du philosophe."  The colorful, simple art remains just right for this kind of book.  Has anyone thought of translating these books into English?  I would love to teach them!

2009 Lousy Rotten Stinkin' Grapes.  Margie Palatini.  Illustrated by Barry Moser.  First edition.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  NY: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers.  $13.78 from Amazon, May, '14. 

A great title starts off this lively adventure!  This fox calculates and engages, one by one, a whole team to carry out his carefully calculated and recalculated plans.  He goes to the bear for a boost, beaver for an "oomph," porcupine for a "scooch," and possum for a swing,  As he approaches each, each tries to offer an alternate plan whose description is interrupted by the fox with the remark like "After all, I'm the fox.  Sly.  Clever.  Smart.  I know how to get grapes."  The elaborately diagrammed plans run from alpha to echo.  When skunk asks the unsuccessful group what they are doing, fox answers that there is simply no way to get the grapes.  Each gets to express the simpler way in which he could have got the grapes.  Fox's last remark then is "Well, do as you wish.  I, for one, wouldn't think of eating those lousy, rotten, stinkin' grapes now, even if I could.. They're probably sour anyway."  They answer "If you say so" as they eat the grapes.  Moser's fox is wonderful in his leapings, his positionings, and his plannings.

2009 Moral Stories. Retold by Antara Mukherjee. Goutam Chattopadhyay; Cover designed by Babul Dey. Paperbound. Kolkata, India: Book Club. Gift of the Book Club, Kolkata, India, March, '09.

This small-format (4¾" x 7") paperback book of 128 pages is in a series with two others that I have, Stories from the Panchatantra and Aesop's Fables. Editors differ for each volume but the artists for both the interior and the cover remain the same. There are here some thirty-four fables, each with a full-page black-and-white line drawing. Some also have a smaller detail from that page in a circle. The stories come from Kalila and Dimna, Aesop, and some sources that I do not recognize. The typos continue to occur in this volume, as they had in Stories from the Panchatantra. Notice, for example, "descirbe" on 23 and the meaningless shifts of tense on 25. Stories new to me include "The Drummer's Son" (31) and "The Happy Monk" (60). "The Woodcutter's Foolish Son" (35) seems to derive from "The Gardener and the Bear." "The Liar Cowherd" transforms BW by by using cattle and a tiger (81). MM becomes "The Old-Vendor and His Dream World" (91). The illustration for this adaptation of MM might be one of the liveliest in the book. How does the capseller in "The Capseller and the Monkeys" (53) "wheel his barrow.through lakes"? That we are dealing with an updated version of fables comes clear in the first line of this fable: "Two cats managed to steal a hunk of pizza from a pizza hut" (99). A colored illustration of FG is on the cover of this paperback.

2009 Ms. April and Ms. Mae: A Fable. Written and illustrated by Karen Dugan. First printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Edina, MN: The Gryphon Press. $4.95 from Better World Books, Sept., '10.

Many might call this an ecological tale. Ms. April has loved her land and the creatures on it all her life. Her inseparable friend is Ms. Mae the fox. Ms. Mae finds an ingenious solution when Ms. April is sick and big business people threaten to take over the property. The art is primitive in the best sense and engaging. One of the best two-page spreads shows the activities the two friends enjoy together on Ms. April's property on a given day. The travels of this book seem surprising to me. I know that I got it through Better World Books, but I believe it came with Alibris bookmarks from Seashell Books in Clearwater, FL. I do not know how to put all that together! 

2009 Nola & Roux: Une Fable de la Louisiane; una Fábula de Luisiana; a Louisiana Fable. Todd-Michael St. Pierre. Illustrations by Lori Walsh & Shannon Walsh. Paperbound. Piggy Press. $16.98 from Amazon.com, March, '12.

This is a very clever little rehandling of TMCM. Nola is a Creole mouse from New Orleans, and Roux is a Cajun mouse who has never gone beyond the bayous. A float from Ratticus is going by as they arrive in New Orleans. The city meal gives a great chance to pause over New Orleans cuisine! When the two mice have to hide, they do so behind a giant Mardi Gras King Cake. The woman notices them and sends in Arabella, the cat. One narrow escape is enough for Roux. Each mouse has a song -- of course in three languages -- at the end. There is a recipe for King Cake for kids at the booklet's end. The presentation of New Orleans is very nice, starting from the Charles Street streetcar on the cover. I am surprised to notice that this book is printed on demand -- just ten days ago. I could not find a snailmail address for Piggy Press.

2009 Not So Grimm: Gentle Fables and Cautionary Tales. Becky Haigler. Paperbound. Abilene Texas: Laughing Cactus Press. $4.98 from AwesomeBooks.com, June, '12.

These stories belong somewhere in the general territory of "magic realism" or fairy tales. The back cover speaks of Haigler's being a "master at navigating the shadowy boundary between the 'magic' and the 'real.'" I tried two shorter stories. "Chronological Order" (37) plays with the experience of a woman who has to close up shop late in a terrible snowstorm. She barely notices a "thump" on the way home but distinctly notices that all her clocks are stuck the next morning on 11:10. Then she hears of a man frozen the night before in the parking lot of the mall. Did he die at 11:10? Did she hit him? "Guardian" (55) has a young man bumping into "safety" and "security" advertisements, claims, and warnings all day long until he arrives home and a man named Angelo Guardi knocks on their door and urgently wants to see his wife. The man hurries the wife to the door and then out the building as it bursts into flames. Only the title of this book seems to mention fables, and I doubt that there are any fables here. Printed on demand in November, 2009, in LaVergne, TN. 

2009 Pancha Tantra. Directed and Produced by Benedikt Taschen. Paintings by Walton Ford. "Field Studies" by Bill Buford. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. Cologne: Taschen. € 49.99 from Frölich & Kaufmann, Berlin, April, '10.

Here is one of the larger -- and heavier! -- surprises of my collecting career. This is a gorgeous, serious book, but it has nothing to do with fables! "Pancha Tantra" is a metaphorical title, I suppose, to indicate that this is Walton Ford's bestiary. It is certainly that! The pictures are dramatic, colorful, imposing, sometimes even shocking. Nature's animals are shown at their wildest and most primitively forceful. "Der Pantherausbruch" deals in heavy blacks versus whites in the foreground, with torch-bearing peasants in the background (156). "Nila," an elephant surrounded by a host of Western birds, marches forward in a stately fashion but brandishes at the same time an extended penis that supports a bird of its own (137). The original water-color on paper works are apparently quite large. This oversized (about 15" x 11") book of some 320 pages displays the works very well.

2009 Samye Vesjolye Basni (Funniest Fables). Ivan Krilov. Illustrations by B. Kastalvskij. Hardbound. Moscow: Rosman. $20 from Rubux books, through eBay, Sept., '10.

Here is a delightful children's book of forty-six of Krylov's fables with lively colored illustrations. The book has a strong sense of play, right from the pre-title page's illustration of inkpot, feather, violin, glasses, and manuscript. It is not hard to recognize old friends here. The first fables are FC, WL, "Quartet," GA, and "The Elephant in the Museum." Among the good lively illustrations here are "The Soup of Master John" (24-25); "Wolves and Sheep" (32-33); "Old Mat and His Man" (ruining the bearskin) (48-49); "Trishkin's Kaftan" (55); "Peasant and Robber" (58); and "Wayfarers and Hounds" (62). This book will be a valuable resource the next time I get to teach Krylov in a fable course. 

2009 Stories from the Panchatantra. Purabi Chakraborty. Illustrated by Goutam Chattopadhyay; Cover designed by Babul Dey. Paperbound. Kolkata, India: Book Club. $16.98 from Hand Me a Napkin on eBay, March, '09.

Here is a small-format (4¾" x 7") paperback book of 128 pages presenting some twenty-eight fables after an introductory section "Vishnusarman and the Princes." There are a number of typos and curiosities along the way, starting with an alternate spelling "Vishnusharman" two pages earlier in the T of C and two pages later in a page header. About half of the stories are traditional stories that appear in the Panchatantra and in Kalila and Dimna. Others are surprising, like the version of MSA that shows up on 85; this version uses a cart for the donkey. The situation causes a bystander to say "The donkey should carry load" (85). "The Foolish Friend" (103) has a sword-bearing monkey and a king for the Aesopic fable's solitary gardener and protective bear. The end result is the same. FM (45) seems to me another Aesopic fable that has made it into an originally different collection. New to me and very good: "The Young Rat's Curiosity" (27). He is stupid enough to make a hole in a basket containing a snake. Among the better illustrations presents "The Heron and the Crab" (38).

2009 The Boy Who Cried Wolf. Kathleen E. Bradley. Illustrator: Agi Palinay. Paperbound. Huntington Beach, CA: Building Fluency through Reader's Theater: Teacher Created Materials. $6.12 from Premier Books, Roseburg, OR, through abe, Jan., '11.

This is a 24-page booklet made apparently for developing fluidity in English through reader's theater. It is, I believe, one of eight in the series. I have the equivalent Spanish series of eight, including El Pastorcito Mentiroso. As in that series, this volume begins with a resume of the story and two pages of tips on reader's theater by Aaron Shepherd. The six characters are clearly laid out and their names are marked by different colors as the play goes through its five acts. A poem, a song, and a glossary finish off the booklet. The poem here is "The Shepherd" by William Blake, and the song is the traditional "Bought Me a Cat." A repeated design marks 6 through 24. The one fuller illustration is the bored boy sitting with his head in his hand on the front cover and title-page.

2009 The Fables of Phaedrus. Translated by Henry Thomas Riley and Christopher Smart. Paperbound. LaVergne, TN: Dodo Press. $16.48 from Better World Books through eBay, Nov., '09.

The full title is The Fables of Phaedrus. Literally Translated into English Prose with Notes by Henry Thomas Riley, B.A., Late Scholar of Clare Hall, Cambridge. To Which Is Added a Metrical Translation of Phaedrus, by Christopher Smart, A.M. The versions used here appeared first, I believe, in The Comedies of Terence, and the Fables of Phaedrus from 1853. That is the version I have. The version used in this paperback comes from an edition of 1887 unknown to me and perhaps not including Terence's comedies. There is a detailed T of C for the prose portion of this book, but there seems to be none for the verse portion. The T of C in the 1853 handled both portions. The prose version, here as there, adds new fables attributed to Phaedrus and Aesopian fables from unknown authors. I wrote then that a random check finds the verse translations good. Here the verse translations are set off by being done completely in capital letters. This seems to be one of those "instant reprint" books. One looks for a long time before finding where the publisher is situated. The date of publication seems to show that it was printed for this very order, since it is two days before the book was received! The cover has borrowed a picture of woodland animals; has it any relevance to fables? Welcome to the new world of publishing!

2009 The Hare and the Tortoise. Retold by Elizabeth Adams. Illustrated by Andy Rowland. Hardbound. London/Sydney: Tadpole Tales: Franklin Watts. $14.58 from Blackwell, Oxford, August, '11.

Here is a new series from Blackwell's containing maybe ten titles, about six of which are fables. I just ordered the other four fable editions in paperback from the publisher. The story itself runs from 3 through 21 with vivid full-page illustrations. Hare here is marked by short lines all over his body. Tortoise wears a helmet with goggles perched over the visor. Again, a first single page is followed by illustrations on two-page spreads. Tadpole Tales are meant for the very young: "newly independent readers" according to the last page. Two pages before that page of explanations offer puzzles. Nice work!

2009 The Hedgehog, the Fox and the Owl and other animal fables; Jez, Lis I Sowa oraz inne bajki z moralem. Radomir Putnikovich. First printing. Paperbound. : Paul Mould Publishing. £8 from Blackwell, Oxford, August, '11.

This is a 48-page paperback containing six stories, apparently invented by Putnikovich. They are true fables. Hedgehog has a pear but both the owl and the fox say that they want it. The hedgehog deposits it for them, and they promptly break into a come-hell-or-highwater fight over it that soon takes them away from the scene. Hedgehog picks up the pear and takes it home to his children. A dragonfly wears a beautiful spider-made cape and is thinking of how others will envy her when a fish seizes her -- of course, by the cape! A spider repays a kindness to a stag by weaving a quick web in front of a cave. Hunters see the web and conclude that there could be no deer in the cave. The English here is put on each page above the Polish. The colorful art has a cloisonne character.

2009 The Judgment of the Crows: Parables and Fables. Steven Carter. Paperbound. Lanham, MD: Hamilton Books: Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group. $19.18 from Premier Books, Roseburg, OR, through eBay, August, '10.

I just reviewed Steven Carter's 2010 book After Aesop. Before I get into the book itself, I need to ask: Is this a "Printed upon Demand" book? Notice as you begin this book that its last thirty-seven pages are "Improvisations upon Aesop's Fables." I started with these. They are good. Carter has a lively sense of fable. Does he quote himself when he does "The donkey and the magic potion" (121)? I hope so, because I have seen exactly this rendering sometime very recently! I begin to think that this book got him going on the other one.. Carter is often somewhere between Aesop and Bierce. I give at least one prize to "The vixen and the lioness": "Always take quality over quantity, except in the case of only children, who, often as not, are spoiled rotten" (130). Another prize goes to "The lion, the fox, and the stag" (135). It has a great surprise ending. A sampling of the early stories finds them provocative. In "The Two Women" (6), one woman consoles another betrayed by her lover: "You will find another." The woman betrayed answers "I am weeping for that time in the future when I shall have no cause to weep!" One to a page, I find these fables and parables thought-provoking. Bravo, Steven Carter! 

2009 The Lion and the Man: A Fable. Lindamichellebaron. Illustrated by Carl Huggins. First edition. Paperbound. Garden City, NY: Harlin Jacque Publications. AU$26.49 from The Nile, Australia, through eBay, Nov., '10.

This book is surprising because it was printed on demand November 24, 2010 in La Vergne, TN, even though it lists a publishing firm in New York City. That kind of printing on demand of a book in print seems to me to be something new in the publishing world, distinct from the republishing of photocopied books from the past. Lindamichellebaron, as the back cover tells, has been publisher and president of Harlin Jacque Publications for over twenty years. I just ordered her previous fable publication, Anthony Ant and Grady Grasshopper, from Harlin Jacque. Pages 11-41 here present the fable, with vivid colored illustrations on the left-hand page and text on the right. Pages 43-67 then present the same story as "A Play for Classroom Use." The story narrates -- from the lion's perspective -- the lion's capture and delivery to a zoo. It develops the engaging conceit of the lion training men to care for him well. Perhaps the best of the cartoon illustrations shows people jumping into each other's arms over fear at the lion's roaring (38). In the play, the same half-faces of lion and trapper face each other nicely on each pair of pages. 

2009 The Lion and the Mouse. Retold by Diane Marwood. Illustrated by Anni Axworthy. Hardbound. London/Sydney: Tadpole Tales: Franklin Watts. £8.99 from Blackwell, Oxford, August, '11.

Here is a new series from Blackwell's containing maybe ten titles, about six of which are fables. I just ordered the other four fable editions in paperback from the publisher. The story itself runs from 3 through 21 with vivid full-page illustrations. The first illustration echoes the cover: the mouse is on the lion's nose. Thereafter, all illustrations are two-page spreads. Tadpole Tales are meant for the very young: "newly independent readers" according to the last page. Two pages before that page of explanations offer puzzles. Nice work!

2009 The Lion & the Mouse. Jerry Pinkney. Stated first edition, first printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. NY: Books for Young Readers: Little, Brown and Company. $13.59 from Pendragon Books, Oakland, Dec., '09.

I write above that Pinkney is the author. Actually, the story of LM is beautifully presented almost without words. The only words one finds here are words like "Squeak" and "Roar." Pinkney himself sums up the tale in the "Artist's Note" on the last page. On this page one also finds most of the bibliographical information. Pinkney's presentation is strong and winning. As he himself says, he ends up expanding the fable, especially by the inclusion of family. His art still reminds me of Frederick Richardson. The flyleaf is right: this is a "stunningly rendered wordless adaptation of one of Aesop's most beloved fables." This is a new fable book that was worth the effort of making a new fable book!

2009 The Lion & the Mouse. Jerry Pinkney. Fourth printing; Caldecott Medal Seal on Dust-Jacket. Hardbound. NY: Books for Young Readers: Little, Brown and Company. $13.59 from Pendragon Books, Berkeley, Dec., '09.

I already list a copy of the first printing that I received as a gift. This copy, from the fourth printing, adds a "Caldecott Medal Award" gold seal on the front dust-jacket. As I wrote there, my form lists Pinkney as the author. Actually, the story of LM is beautifully presented almost without words. The only words one finds here are words like "Squeak" and "Roar." Pinkney himself sums up the tale in the "Artist's Note" on the last page. On this page one also finds most of the bibliographical information. Pinkney's presentation is strong and winning. As he himself says, he ends up expanding the fable, especially by the inclusion of family. His art still reminds me of Frederick Richardson. The flyleaf is right: this is a "stunningly rendered wordless adaptation of one of Aesop's most beloved fables." This is a new fable book that was worth the effort of making a new fable book!

2009 The Lion & the Mouse.  Jerry Pinkney.  Ninth printing; Caldecott Medal Seal on Dust-Jacket.  Dust-jacket.  Hardbound.  NY: Books for Young Readers:  Little, Brown and Company.  $13.18 from amazon.com, Nov., '13.  

Through some error, I purchased another copy of this book.  I already had copies of the first and fourth printings.  I was ready to dismiss this copy as identical with the latter when I started to notice little differences.  I will thus keep the book in the collection as a good example of how a book changes these days in the publishing world.  A big change is from Singapore to China as the place of publication.  A second change, alas, is in the listed price on the front flyleaf: from $16.99 to $18.  If one looks closely, one can notice a change in the formatting of the bar code on the back of the dust-jacket.  To my surprise, the location of "Little, Brown and Company" on the title-page has changed, and there is a new logo.  A careful eye will note further changes in the colophon material on the bottom of the "Artist's Note" page, including the indication of the ninth printing.  There is now mention, for example, of persons responsible for design and production.  Lift up a rock, and -- my! -- what one might find!  I will continue with my comments from the fourth printing.  This copy, from the fourth printing, adds a "Caldecott Medal Award" gold seal on the front dust-jacket.  As I wrote there, my form lists Pinkney as the author.  Actually, the story of LM is beautifully presented almost without words.  The only words one finds here are words like "Squeak" and "Roar."  Pinkney himself sums up the tale in the "Artist's Note" on the last page.  On this page one also finds most of the bibliographical information.  Pinkney's presentation is strong and winning.  As he himself says, he ends up expanding the fable, especially by the inclusion of family.  His art still reminds me of Frederick Richardson.  The flyleaf is right: this is a "stunningly rendered wordless adaptation of one of Aesop's most beloved fables."  This is a new fable book that was worth the effort of making a new fable book!

2009 Tierisch Moralisch: Die Welt der Fabel in Orient und Okzident. Herausgegeben von Mamoun Fansa. Hardbound. Oldenburg, Germany: Niedersächsiche Landesmuseen und Landesmuseum Natur und Mensch Oldenburg. €29.90 from Germany, Sept., '09.

"Begleitschrift zur Sonderausstellung des Landesmuseums Natur und Mensch Oldenburg vom 22. Februar bis zum 01. Juni 2009." I am so sorry to have missed the exhibit! I am delighted to have found the book. The book is both an exhibit catalogue and a set of essays setting the background for the exhibit. It is richly and beautifully illustrated with photographs of the objects in the exhibit and of other pertinent materials, including books and texts pertinent to the history of fable in East and West. The twenty-six essays cover not only fables but the material culture presumed by them in East and West. Sections include "Geschichte der Fabel" (15); "Tiere in den Fabeln" (82); "Kalila und Dimna" (109); "Geisteswelt des Orients vom 10. bis 15. Jahrhundert" (132); "Geisteswelt Europas vom 14. bis 16. Jahrhundert" (166); "Weltsprache Moral" (213); "Objektkatalog Chronologie der Fabeln" (226); "Objektkatalog Geisteswelt des Orients vom 10. bis 15. Jahrhundert" (264); "Objektkatalog Geisteswelt des Europas vom 14. bis 16. Jahrhundert" (284); and "Quellen- und Literaturverzeichnis" (301). This beautifully produced book will reward careful study and long observing!

2009 Two-Minute Animal Stories.  Retold by Elena Pasquali.  Illustrated by Nicola Smee.  First edition, first printing.  Hardbound.  Oxford, England: Lion Children's Book:  Lion Hudson.  $4.59 from Rocket Reuse, Alameda, CA, July, '13.

There are ten short animal tales told here.  Three are identified as from Aesop: "Lion and Tiger" (6), TH (34), and LM (38).  The first is new to me.  Lion and Tiger grow up together under the tutelage of a wise man.  They argue about whether the moon's changes presage changes in weather.  The wise man intervenes saying "The moon changes as it will.  The weather changes as it will.  One thing should never change: friendship" (9).  "Hug" indicates that his words have the desired impact.  In "The Crocodile Feast" from India (14), deer tricks the greedy crocodiles into lining up in the narrows, so that she can "count" them by jumping across their backs to the fruit she wants.  "Greedy Monkey" from Pakistan (26) combines elements of "The Boy and the Filberts" and FG.  "The Two Frogs" from Japan (30) is the famous tale of mistaking one's own familiar place -- Kyoto and Osaka, respectively -- for the new and different place one had intended to reach.  "Kyoto is just like Osaka."  Each goes home "none the wiser" (33).  LM has what seems a typo: "''You were tickling me,' he said a growling voice" (39).  "Hare is Scared" from India (42) is the story of a "thud" seeming to the hare to signal the end of the world.  Lion halts the stampede and urges the animals to stop and think the next time.  Other stories are aetiological pourquoi stories explaining such things as zebras' stripes and porcupines' quills.  Lively, colorful water-color illustrations are well balanced with text.  Perhaps the best is the first: the wise old man dangles a catnip mouse over the lion and tiger cubs (6).

2009 Usborne Animal Stories for Little Children.  Susanna Davidson, Louie Stowell, and others.  Illustrated by Frank Endersby, Eva Muszynski, and others.  Hardbound.  Tulsa, OK: Educational Development Corporation: Usborne Books.  $18.99 from Usborne Books, Sioux Falls Flea Market, Nov., '14.  

This large-format (10" x 10") book contains five stories.  Two of them are fables: LM and "Brer Rabbit and the Blackberry Bush."  The other three are "How Elephants Lost their Wings"; "The Little Red Hen"; and "The Little Giraffe."  Each story gets about 25 pages.  That length and the large pages here make for a leisurely telling of each of the five tales.  Susanna Davidson remains Usborne's writer for Aesop's fables.  Frank Endersby illustrates LM here.  Louie Stewell joins Davidson on the Brer Rabbit story, which is illustrated by Eva Muszynski.  In LM here, a little tail brushed the tip of the lion's nose.  He sneezed and awoke.  Endersby's best illustration is that of the laughing lion on 40.  Text and pictures work together well in the Brer Rabbit story to set fox and rabbit up as sworn enemies.  This is the story in which Brer Rabbit pleads to be thrown into the blackberry bush.

2009 Write Your Own Fable. Natalie M. Rosinsky. Hardbound. Minneapolis, MN: Write Your Own Series: Compass Point Books. $19.98 from Buy.com through eBay, May, '09.

This 64-page glossy book is one of eighteen offered by Compass Point Books for children in the fifth through seventh grades. I am impressed with its up-to-dateness, its insight into fable, and its approach to writing. It has ten chapters strong on brainstorming and training techniques. As I page through, I am delighted to see many old friend editions and authors and am surprised at the range of people on whom Rosinsky draws for inspiration and illustration. I find a good deal of helpful advice here, from keeping a journal and a notebook and creating a writing zone through putting aside one's first attempt for a while to making a copy for oneself when shipping the final work off to a publisher. "Turn bad experiences into good stories." "Ignore your inner critic." What good advice! Good fable-book producers noted and cited here include Michael Morpurgo, Candace Fleming, Demi, Jerry Pinkney, John Scieszka, Christopher Wormell, Arnold Lobel, Saviour Pirotta, Helen Ward, Elizabeth Dahlie, Paul Rosenthal, Mitsumasa Anno, Jan Thornhill, Rafe Martin and Ed Young, and Julius Lester. Good bibliography, image credits, and index. For students' textbooks, the books in this series carry a pretty hefty pricetag!

2009 Yisuo Yuyan Dongwupian. Yin Yong. Paperbound. Beijing: Jindun Publishing House. 8 Yuan from Hangzhou Wholesale City Trading Co., Oct., '10.

This is a 24-page pamphlet almost 10" square. It presents ten fables, each in a pleasant two-page spread. On the left hand page are a Chinese title and -- at least apparently -- a full Chinese text. Below that, inside a box of its own, is the English-language text. Near the bottom of the page in a rounded box of its own, is a handy moral in both languages. Facing this page of information is, in each case, a lively drawing from a very young hand. A favorite illustration of mine here is "The Deer and the Lion" on 11. Another strong painting shows "The Cat and the Hens." The cat is showing the hens and chicks an enormous syringe with a needle sticking up! The drawing of the pig on 17 suggests that this artist never saw a pig in his or her young life! The English is not perfect in this booklet. We read on 20, for example, "How regret the fish was." All  the illustrations here were done by children.

2009 Zólw i Zajac: Bajka Ezopa/The Tortoise and the Hare: An Aesop's Fable. Opowiedziana na nowo przez Angela McAllister. Ilustrowana drzeworytami przez Jonathan Heale. First edition, apparent first printing. Dust-jacket. Hardbound. London: Frances Lincoln Children's Books: Frances Lincoln Limited. $14.98 from Better World Books, Sept., '10.

Here is one of three bilingual reworkings of Frances Lincoln's 2001 version that is only in English. The Polish here appears above the English, and both languages complement the very large illustration on the facing page. Let me include comments from that listing. This is a landscape-formatted, unpaginated, well-executed large book. McAllister is careful in her English telling of the tale. I say "English" because a few elements like "elevenses" might look strange to readers in the USA. In McAllister's telling, the tortoise has a strategy from the start, as is clear when he rejects the hare's suggestion of a short race to the hedge and back. "'That's not far enough,' said Tortoise. 'We'll race down the lane, past the mill and across the meadow to the bridge.'" The mill is important, because the tortoise knows that the hare will find carrots there, just as the meadow will invite a nap in the hot midday sun. Perhaps the best of Heale's good colored woodcuts depicts the smiling tortoise as he comes upon the carrot tops lying scattered at the mill. The sleeping tortoise meanwhile dreams of leaping over the moon, while all the rabbits cheer. Of course that cheer is for the tortoise already struggling toward the bridge. The rabbits cheer again for the hare when he promises after the race not to boast any more. The story closes with the tired tortoise asking the hare to carry him home. This book gives a good example of how a single fable should be told when it is extended to fill a book.

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