Home

Share

Finding a place to fit in!

Read a wonderful review of A Bird Like Himself by: Jill Bennett

 

abirdlikehimself

A Bird Like Himself
Anahita Teymorian
Tiny Owl Publishing
When a chick emerges from a seemingly parentless egg, the animals living around take on the role of carers.

They do their very best and if nothing else they give their new infant plenty of love.

dscn6204-800x600

With such a variety of carers though, it’s not surprising that Baby – so called because he became everyone’s baby – has something of an identity crisis.
But with the winter fast approaching, it’s time for birds like Baby to be flying south to warmer climes and try as they might, none of the animals is able to demonstrate the techniques of flying …

a bird like himself 25So what will be the fate of Baby who as yet isn’t really like those other birds? Can he finally spread those wings of his and take flight? Perhaps, with the help of a special friend …

With its inherent themes of acceptance, parenting and caring, friendship and finding a place to fit in, this lovely book will resonate with adults as well as the many children I hope it will be shared with especially with refugees from Syria being made to feel welcome in the UK as I write.

Author/illustrator Anahita Teymorian’s densely daubed illustrations are sheer delight. I absolutely love the final double spread whereon is revealed the significance of the chequer board design that appears on every spread – brilliant!

Link to the source: here.

 

To Buy this book please click here.

To visit our bookstore Please click here.

IMG_8644

Anahita Teymorian Signing books at Edinburgh International Book Festival, August 2015.

 

  • A Bird Like Himself as described by a Guardian reader. Link
  • A review by Hazel G Mitchel. Link
  • A review by: Medicated Flower of Fashion. Link
  • A review by: Outside in the World. Link
  • A review by Creative Steps Magazine. Link
  • A review by: Let them be Small. Link
  • A Blog post by: Tin Owl Publishing: Link

 

Visit our bookstore

Download book posters

Limited edition prints

Subscribe to Tiny Owl on YouTube!

Share
home

The power of kindness and love shine through in Cinderella of the Nile

Cinderella of the Nile was picked for Perfect Picture Book Friday

Buy Cinderella of the Nile 

It was so wonderful to see Cinderella of the Nile included as a Perfect Picture Book Friday (PPBF) by Patricia Nozell in Wander, Ponder, Write. Read the lovely review here:

Title: Cinderella of the Nile 

Written by: Beverley Naidoo

Illustrated by: Marjan Vafaeian

Publisher/date: Tiny Owl Publishing/2018

Suitable for ages: 4-8 or older

Themes/Topics: fairy tale; #ReadYourWorld; #OneStoryManyVoices; kindness; love

Opening:

Long, long ago when pirates roamed the seas around Greece, a beautiful baby girl was born in a village to the north. She had eyes like sapphires and fine red curls. The happy parents, who had waited many years for this child, called her ‘Rhodopis’ because her cheeks were so rosy.

Brief Synopsis:

In this retelling of an early Greek version of the Cinderella story, a kind-heated young girl is transported to a land far from home. There she toils as a slave, until a new owner treats her as a daughter and gifts her red slippers, and a wife-seeking pharaoh falls in love with her.

Links to Resources:

Rhodopis traveled from northern Greece, to an island, to Egypt along the Nile River. Trace her journey on a map of the eastern Mediterranean Sea;
Read one or more of the Cinderella stories listed below. How are they the same? What’s different?
In a forward, One Story, Many Voices, Naidoo writes that “tales change when they are told and retold” as that is the “freedom of the storyteller.” Write your own Cinderella story.

Why I Like this Book:

Like many other young and not-so-young readers, I love fairy tales. I especially love seeing how versions differ across regions and eras, even as the story themes remain the same.

In Cinderella of the Nile, I found several aspects of the story-line that differed from the popular version of my youth. For instance, this story lacks an evil stepmother and a fairy godmother. Instead, Rhodopis begins life with loving parents in a simple village in northern Greece where she herds goats. Then, pirates kidnap her and she enters a life where slave traders and owners determine her fate. Interestingly, she starts life in Europe and ends up as a slave in Africa – opposite to the slave route that most slaves endured, and opposite to the route that many refugees and migrants now travel. The inclusion of piracy, slavery and the reversal of this route will, I think, lead to thought-provoking discussions, especially with older children.

In lieu of a fairy godmother, Naidoo includes a well-known storyteller/philosopher, Aesop, who befriends Rhodopis and counsels her to “bend, not break” when faced with difficulties. That and her kindness to various creatures lead to her meeting, and union with, the princely pharaoh.

The themes of Cinderella, the power of kindness, adapting to one’s circumstances, and love, shine through in Cinderella of the Nile. I think children also will enjoy seeing how this tale features characters of varying skin tones and ethnicities, how a noted storyteller, Aesop, plays a role in the outcome, and how kindness to all creatures benefits Cinderella, even without the flick of a magic wand or the transformation of a pumpkin into a carriage.

Vafaeian’s colorfully rich illustrations not only complement but complete Naidoo’s retelling. With her “fine red curls,” Rhodopis is a focal point of every illustration, standing out even among the vibrant flora and fauna that fill every page.

A spread from Cinderella of the Nile showing Aesop

I also love that Cinderella and her pharaoh are an interracial couple, as shown in the last gorgeous spread.

A spread from Cinderella of the Nile showing Cinderella and the Pharaoh

A Note about Craft:

Cinderella of the Nile is the first of Tiny Owl Publishing’s One Story, Many Voices series, which showcases the universality of fairy tale themes as evident in many similar stories told by “voices from around the world” that reflect the circumstances of particular times and places. How would you rewrite the Cinderella story, or some other favorite fairy tale, to reflect where and when you live or to better include people like yourself?

Learn more about Carnegie Award-winning author Beverley Naidoo at her website and in this article about Cinderella of the Nile.

Iranian illustrator Marjan Vafaeian also illustrated The Parrot and the Merchant and Bijan & Manije.

Cinderella of the Nile was named one of 10 picture books that promote empathy by book reviewer Mamma Filz. A reviewer in The Telegraph noted how this Cinderella overcame adversity “without a fairy godmother or a fancy frock.”

Read Adelita: A Mexican Cinderella Story and Glass Slipper, Gold Sandal: A Worldwide Cinderella to see how this story changes at differing times and places, even as its themes remain universal.

This Perfect Picture Book entry is being added to Susanna Hill’s Perfect Picture Books list. Check out the other great picture books featured there!

  • Check out fab children’s activities from Edinburgh Book Festival
  • Listen to podcast: Speaking the Truth with Fairy Tales, featuring academic Jack Zipes, author Beverley Naidoo and librarian Ann Lazim
  • Read Beverley Naidoo’s response to our Fairy Tale campaign

Buy Cinderella of the Nile 

Visit our bookstore

Download book posters

Limited edition prints

Subscribe to Tiny Owl on YouTube!

Share
home

Comments are closed, but trackbacks and pingbacks are open.