Robin Redbreast

Robin Redbreast
Birds can represent the fluttering, darting thoughts of intuition. This is why little birds helped Cinderella help herself.

Heroes and Monsters

Beowulf slays the ogre Grenel
Bloody monster by Ashley
Heroes and monsters  in classic and contemporary children's books can be a potent resource for emotional growth in children.  A reading list of stories about heroes and monsters is featured on this page.  Also included are fairy tales, fantasy, sci-fi, and historic fiction appropriate for children ages six through twelve. 
On left, above:  Beowulf slays the ogre, Grendel, from a retelling by Morpurgo, M. (2006) Beowulf. Candlewick Press. Right: A bloody monster, made from a paper bag, popsicle sticks, and tempera paint by Ashley, age 6.

Heroes and Monsters: A Reading List:

  1. Crossman, R.H. Saving Cinderella: Fairy Tales and Children in the 21st Century 
  2. Rumsford, J.B. (2007). Beowulf, a Hero's Tale Retold. (6-9)
  3. Morpurgo, M. (2006). Beowulf. (retold).  Candlewick Press (9-12)
  4. Fajardo, A. (2010) Kid Beowulfwww,
  5. D'aulaire's (1962). Book of Greek Myths.  New York: Random House. (6-12)
  6. Jendresen, E. & Greene, J. Hanuman. (based on Valmiki's RAMAYANA)
  7. Mazumdar, S. (1958) Ramayana. Calcutta: Orient Longman's
  8. D'aulaire's Norse Gods and Giants.New York: Random.  House. (6-12)
  9. Jaffrey, M. (1985) Seasons of Splendour: Tales, Myths & Legends of India. New York: Atheneum
  10. Husain, S. (1995) What Do We Know About Islam? New York: Peter Bedrick Books 
  11. Parrinder, G. (1982) Library of the World Myths and Legends: African Mythology. New York: Peter Bedrick Books
  12. Bryan, A. (1971) The Ox of the Wonderful Horns and Other African Folktales. New York: Atheneum
  13. Musgrove, M. (1976) Ashanti to Zulu: African Traditions. New York: The Dial Press
  14. Carpenter, F. (1937) Tales of a Chinese Grandmother. New York: Doubleday
  15. Lee, J. (1999) I Once Was a Monkey: Stories Buddha Told. New York: Farrar, Strauss & Giroux
  16. Goble, P. (1998) The Legend of the White Buffalo Woman Washington. D.C.: National Geographic Society
  17. Fisher, L.E. 1999) Gods and Goddesses of the Ancient Maya. New York: Holiday House
  18. McCall, H. (2002) Gods ands Goddesses of the Ancient Egyptians. New York: Peter Bedrick Books
  19. Yolen, J. & Harris, R.J. (2002). Hippolyta and the Curse of the Amazons. New York: Harper Collins. (8-12)Pyle, H. (1962). The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood.  New York: Golden Press. (8-12)
  20. Shipton, P. (2004) The Pig Scrolls by Gryllus the Pig. (ages 9-12)
  21. Colum, P. (1921/1990). The Golden Fleece and Heroes Who Lived Before Achilles. New York:McMillan Publishing/Scholastic.
  22. Osborne, M.P. (2003) Tales From the Odyssey. Book 1: The One Eyed Giant. Book 2: The Land of the Dead. Book 3: Sirens and Sea Montsers. Book 4: The Gray Eyed Goddess. Book 5: Return to Ithaca. Book 6: The Final Battle. New York: Hyperion Paperback Books for Children.
  23. Pullman, P. (2001). The Golden Compass.  New York: Yearling. (9+)
  24. Pullman, P. The Subtle Knife. "                     "
  25. Pullman, P. The Amber Spyglass  "   
  26. Pullman, P. (2004). The Scarecrow and His Servant.             
  27. Jeffers, S. (1991). Brother Eagle, Sister Sky: A message from Chief Seattle. New York: Dial Books. (6-12)
  28. Aiken, J. (1966) Nightbirds on Nantucket. New York: Doubleday & Company, Inc.
  29. Sutcliff, R. (1993) Black Ships Before Troy: The Story of the Iliad New York: Delacourt Press 
  30. Sutcliff, R.  The Witches Brat
  31. Piper, W. (1930/2010) The Little Engine That Could. New York: Platt&Munck/Scholastic  (It inspired me when I was small, I don't care what Betttelheim says about it!)
  32. Mayer, M. (1974) One Monster After Another. New York: Golden Press. (4-7)
  33.  Shephard, A.(2008) The Monkey King: A Superhero Tale from China Skyhook Press. Part of series; ages 6-12.
  34. Jiang, Ji-Li, ( 2002). The Magical Monkey King: Mischief in Heaven. Classic Chinese tales retold. (6-12)
  35. Nix, G. (2007) One Beastly Beast, Two Aliens, Three Inventors, Four Fantastic Tales. Great Britain: HarperCollins.
  36. Sellier, Louis & Fei, (2008). What the Rat Told Me: A Legend of the Chinese Zodiac (easy reader, also gorgeous introduction to this topic for ages 6-12.) Note: Lunar New Year begins on February 2, 2011. It is the Year of the Hare. 
  37. Jacques, B. (1993). Redwall Series, including Redwall, Mossflower, and Martin the Warrior. New York: Ace Books.
  38. Lewis, C.S. (1950). The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, and The Narnia Series. England: Penguin Books.
  39. O'Brien, R.C. (1971) Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh.  Canada: Mcclelland & Stewart, LTD. (9-12)
  40. Buckley, M. (2007).  The Sisters Grimm: The Fairy Tale Detectives. New York: Abrams Books. (6-12)
  41. Banks, L.J. (1998). Moses in Egypt. New York: Puffin Books. ( 9-12)
  42. Creech, S. (1994). Walk Two Moons. New York: Harper Trophy. (American Indian girl, 13, and grandparents)
  43. Farmer, N. (1994). The Ear, the Eye and the Arm. New York: Puffin Books. (Sci-fi set in Zimbabwe, 9-12)
  44. Barrie, J.M. Peter Pan
  45. Seredy, K. (1935) .The Good Master
  46. Adams, R. (1972). Watership Down (10+)
  47. Snicket, L. (1999). A Series of Unfortunate Events, 13 books, including The Bad Beginning, The Austere Academy, and The Ersatz Elevator. (9+)
  48. Phelps, E.J.(ed.) (1978). Tatterhood and Other Tales. New York: The Feminist Press.
  49. Ozaki, Y. T. (1903/1967). The Japanese Fairy Book. New York: Dover Publications.
  50. Marsden, C. (2008). The Quail Club. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Candlewick Press. (9-12)
  51. Yep, L. (1975). Dragonwings: Their Dream Was To Fly. New York: HarperCollins.
  52. Bing, G. (2002). Molly Moon's Incredible Book of Hypnotism; and other titles in the Molly Moon Series. New York: HarperCollins. (8-12)
  53. Baum, L.F. (1909). The Wizard of Oz series, including: The Emerald City of Oz; Tick-Tock of Oz; Rinkitink of Oz, and The Tinman of Oz. Chicago: The Reilly & Lee Co. (6-12)
  54. Dahl, R. (1964). Charlie and the Chocolate Factory; Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. Also: James and the Giant Peach; The BFG; Matilda, and many more. (6-12)
  55. Lindgren, A. (1985). The Brothers Lionheart. (8+); Canada: A Puffin Book. Also: The Pippi Longstocking series, (6-12)
  56. Nash, M. (1962) Mrs. Coverlet's Magicians. Boston: Little, Brown & Company. (6-12)
  57. Gurney, J. (1992). Dinotopia: A Land Apart From Time and The World Beneath. (6-12) Atlanta, Georgia: Turner Broadcasting. (6-12)
  58. Rowling, J.K. (1997) Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. Great Britain: Bloomsbury Publishing, and the rest of the Harry Potter series. 
  59. Yen Mah, A. (2005) Chinese Cinderella and the Secret Dragon Society. New York: HarperCollins. (For ages 12+, this 229 page novel is a fantasy autobiography, set in Shanghai, 1942. Bilingual, with two pages of Chinese characters and expressions translated; historic notes including text of last letters home before execution, sent by US airmen from Japanese prison camp).
  60. Parker, A.C. (1966) Skunny Wundy: Seneca Indian Tales. Chicago: Albert Whitman & Company
  61. Carrison, M.P. (1983) Cambodian Folk Stories from the Gatiloke. Vermont: Charles E. Tuttle Company. Includes appendix with information about the people, their history, and culture, as well as a glossary and recommended reading list. 
  62. Marsden, C. (2008) The Quail Club, The Gold-Threaded Dress, and more books for ages 8-12 highligihting Thai American culture. Massachussets: Candlewick Press.
  63. Selden, G. (1960) The Cricket in Times Square. New York: Dell
  64. Grimm J. & Grimm. W. (1815/1992, Ed., Zipes) The Complete Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm. New York: Bantam Books
  65. Holland, K. C. (1998) The Young Oxford Book of Folk Tales. Oxford: Oxford University Press
  66. Calivino, I. (1956) Italian Folktales, Selected and Retold. San Diego: Harcourt Brace & Company