The Random House Book of Fairy Tales

The Random House Book of Fairy Tales
Adapted by Amy Ehlrich, Illustrated by Diane Goode
(Random House, 1985), hb., 208 pp.

Since I recently posted on the value of fairy tales, it seemed right to recommend a good book of these tales. We have not sampled widely of various collections, but we have found that we like this collection.

It contains “nineteen classic European fairy tales” (in the words of the Introduction). Thus, this is a good source for many of the classic tales. Faerie Gold, the book mentioned in the previous post, though it has the wonderful essay on the value of fairy tales, does not contain classic tales. Instead it contains rather obscure ones, several of which were not all that great in our opinion. In contrast, The Random House Book contains classic tales such as “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” “Rapunzel,” “The Steadfast Tin Soldier,” etc. (you can see the full table of contents here). The classic tales are here retold without dumbing down or p.c. revision.

Interestingly, the book contains an “Introduction” which argues for the value of fairy tales for children. The argument closely follows C. S. Lewis argumentation. It sounds like the author was influenced by Lewis, though I cannot be certain.

My 6 year old has enjoyed reading this book on his own.

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