First Fairytales

Apparently, no one is reading the classics anymore; traditional Fairytales are falling from favour and modern ones, like Frozen, are in. With my older boy, who is almost 4, the old-fashioned Ladybird early-readers were perfectly adequate in introducing the more accessible stories of Little Red Riding Hood and Goldilocks, but also the oddities, like Chicken Licken and The Enormous Turnip.

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Son number two, who will be 2 after Christmas, is a bit more particular, and we have found Stephen Tucker’s more recent versions of Jack and the Beanstalk, Cinderella, and Goldilocks, also published by Ladybird, to be more suitable for his idiosyncratic tastes.

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Vividly Illustrated by the Nick Sharrat, they feature lift-the-flap surprises and a nicely rhythmic singsong patter. I am not so keen on the sanitised storylines (apparently Jack isn’t stealing, but reclaiming property stolen by the giant many years ago), but that is easily remedied with a bit of improvisation.

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