A year ago, my son came home from school complaining that he was having to base his creative writing stories on Cinderella: “Why do I have to write about a girl who’s rescued by a prince? Why can’t she rescue herself?”. I thought this was quite interesting, because here was my (then) 6-year-old son making an observation that I wished his teacher had thought of before setting the text. So, when I saw this book recently on a fellow bookstagrammer’s grid, I thought it would be an ideal read for both my son and duaghter, to show them that girls can actually do the rescuing, rather than the oter way around.

The Lost Fairy Tales, aimed at readers aged around 7 – 11 (but could definitely be shared with younger children), is a collection of stories with heroines that are far more refletive of today. They are smart, brave, witty, curious and determined. Some make bad choices and say the wrong thing – great for showing children that the characters are like any other child (or adult!) – making mistakes and learning from them.

From Canada to Nigeria, Japan to Mexico, there are 20 stories that while retold, remain true to their original stories and characters. All retaining the fairy tale magical and adventurous feel, they are short enough to read in one session, so great for family story-sharing, or fitting in a quick, satisfying independent read whever there’s a spare 10 mins. The stories are also beautifully illustrated – I was drawn to the pictures and the colour-washed pages before I even started to read – and the hardback book has a high-quality feel to it, which would make it a lovely gift. In fact, I’m planning on buying a couple of copies to give as Christmas presents this year…

The Lost Fairy Tales
Author: Isabel Otter
Illustrator: Ana Sender
Publisher: Caterpillar Books (imprint of Little Tiger)
ISBN: 9781848578753
Hardback: 96 pages

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