Sunday, August 1, 2004
Sneed, Brad. 2003. AESOP’S FABLES. New York: Dial. ISBN 0802727518 [Suggested Grade Levels Preschool-2]
SUMMARY and ANALYSIS
Brad Sneed retells and illustrates fifteen of Aesop’s fables. The book includes classic fables such as “The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse” and lesser known works such as “The Caged Bird and the Bat.” At the end of each story is a one sentence moral. The book also includes a special treat for sharp-eyed readers which consists of an extra story told only in pictures.
Basically, Sneed updated all these fables because he wanted to give the stories a fresh new look. Children will laugh when they read about the animals that possess some human traits such as cunning, laziness, and foolishness. His use of puns is quite amusing. For example, the fox asks the crow, “Hey good looking! What’s a beautiful chick like you doing all alone in this forest?” The crow wonders why the fox thinks she is a chicken. The book is a simple, non-preachy way to teach children lessons. They will notice that the characters’ actions have consequences. Sneed also uses rich, delicate watercolors to create his pictures. He often exaggerates an animal’s features for humorous purposes. Kids will laugh when they see the country mouse’s expression when she see the grand feast before her. Overall, it is a classic with a fresh new twist.
Afterwards, the kids can search for the sixteenth tale in the book. Unlike the other stories, this one is told only in pictures. Nevertheless, the pictures have no trouble telling the story on their own. Look for the tale of The Tortoise and the Hare.
The kids can also dramatize the fables.
Ash, Russell. AESOP’S FABLES: A CLASSIC ILLUSRATED VERSION. ISBN 0877017808
Lynch, Tom. FABLES OF AESOP. ISBN 0670889482
By Christine Cortez