What is JacketFlap

  • JacketFlap connects you to the work of more than 200,000 authors, illustrators, publishers and other creators of books for Children and Young Adults. The site is updated daily with information about every book, author, illustrator, and publisher in the children's / young adult book industry. Members include published authors and illustrators, librarians, agents, editors, publicists, booksellers, publishers and fans.
    Join now (it's free).

Sort Blog Posts

Sort Posts by:

  • in
    from   

Suggest a Blog

Enter a Blog's Feed URL below and click Submit:

Most Commented Posts

In the past 7 days

Recent Posts

(tagged with 'Mythology and Folklore')

JacketFlap Sponsors

Spread the word about books.
Put this Widget on your blog!
  • Powered by JacketFlap.com

Are you a book Publisher?
Learn about Widgets now!

Advertise on JacketFlap

MyJacketFlap Blogs

  • Login or Register for free to create your own customized page of blog posts from your favorite blogs. You can also add blogs by clicking the "Add to MyJacketFlap" links next to the blog name in each post.

Blog Posts by Date

Click days in this calendar to see posts by day or month
new posts in all blogs
Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Mythology and Folklore, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 29
1. Echo Echo: Reverso Poems about Greek Myths by Marilyn Singer, illustrated by Josée Masse



Echo Echo: Reverso Poems about Greek Myths is the third book of this kind by Marilyn Singer and "target="_blank">Josée Masse, and the first I've read. I had heard of her first two books of reverso poems, Mirror Mirror and Follow Follow, especially because the subject is fairy tales, but I am happy to start with Echo Echo since Greek myths are just as engaging! Like fairy tales, themes in Greek myths are often black and white, good and bad, making them perfect candidates for a reverso poem.

But first, what is a reverso poem? When done well, it's a brilliant thing to behold, and Singer does reverso very well. Taking two characters, usually opposites, or sometimes telling two sides of one story, a poem is composed that, when read from top to bottom, shares one perspective and, when read from bottom to top (sometimes with a few changes of punctuation or capitalization) tells a different story. 



Icarus and Daedalus is a perfect example. An especially nice feature of this fantastic book is a text box at the bottom of each page that briefly and succinctly summarizes the myth in the poem. Icarus speaks first, describing the wonder of flight, ending with these apt words, "I know  / why / we burn to fly!" Reversing the poem, Daedalus begins his narrative with, "We burn to fly / why / I know / the glory of soaring." It's stunning the way that Singer can put the same words in the mouths of two different characters and have them come out so different. In Icarus's poem, you can feel the excitement and amazement at flying so high, so close to the sun. In Daedalus's poem you can hear a father's caution and wisdom. You will find yourself reading these poems over and over, wondering at the ways they are the same and different.

Pandora and her box


Arachne and Athena

If you are like me, you will be so surprised and intrigued by Singer's poems that you may not give Masse's illustrations the attention they deserve. However, if you linger over them, you will notice that Masse's illustrations embody the reverso theme as well. I have a growing number of students enthralled by Greek mythology and I can't wait to get Echo Echo into their hands, especially because, as English language learners, the straight forward presentation of the classic stories will make it more immediately graspable for them.


Singer & Masse's other books of 
reverso poems!




Source: Review Copy


0 Comments on Echo Echo: Reverso Poems about Greek Myths by Marilyn Singer, illustrated by Josée Masse as of 4/1/2016 4:58:00 AM
Add a Comment
2. Apollo: The Brilliant One by George O'Connor, 80pp, RL 4


Second only to fairy tales, Greek mythology is a favorite of mine. A few years ago, I created a post featuring reference books, story collections and retellings of The Iliad and The Odyssey for kids that you can read here. And, while I love Greek mythology, I am very picky about what I choose to read, give my kids to read and, now as a school librarian, purchase for my students to read. I am grateful to Rick Riordan for making Greek mythology interesting to kids in a huge way, but I am not always happy with the ways that he tweaks the myths. And, while my personal taste does not keep these books - or the graphic editions - off the shelves, I am thrilled that my students share my taste, making George O'Connor's SUPERB Olympians series of graphic novels the most checked out in my library.


O'Connor is a true scholar of Greek myths and this is evident in each of his books, from the various stories about each god and goddess that he chooses to present in each book to the way he frames these stories and connects them to the excellent back matter, starting with the Author's Note, god/goddess stats, "Greek Notes," which are footnotes that add a wealth of information to the stories, and discussion questions. The frontmatter always includes an extensive Olympians Family Tree. And, while I can't be sure if my students are reading these excellent extras, I do know that they are more likely to consume this information at the end of these graphic novels than they are to pick up D'Aulaire's Greek Myths or other collections, both because of its massive size and outdated appearance. Be sure to visit O'Connor's website,   Olympians Rule, where you can read excepts from each book and find more extras to go with each book in the series, like Reader's Theater scripts, an "Add Art or Text" feather that provides a page of illustrated panels with blank speech bubbles OR a page of speech bubbles allowing you to draw in your own gods and goddesses.



O'Connor begins Apollo: The Brilliant One with a quote from The Odyssey, "O Muse! Sing in me, and through me tell a story." Apollo's story begins with one of the Mousai, the nine goddesses of inspiration, or, the Muses. As I read Apollo, I wondered how O'Connor chose the stories that he shares and what order to share them in. Happily, his Author's Note answered that question, which is lengthy but so illuminating. O'Connor writes, 

I felt I had to find the thread of what made Apollo compelling, not just as the central character of this book, but as a widely revered god in the ancient world. Ultimately, , inspiration did strike - the nature of the stories told about Apollo is exactly what makes him so interesting to others and to me. He is not some bland, perfect deity; he is conflicted, malicious, and spiteful. He is unknowable in his inhumanity, yet simultaneously relatable. Through research and immersion, the personality of shining Apollo revealed itself to me: an imperfect, proud, brilliant god, resplendent in his glory and unashamed of his pettiness.

For me, O'Connor's description of Apollo also perfectly explains why the Greek myths have endured for thousands of years and are still infinitely interesting and relevant, to both adults and children.

Born of  the she-wolf, Leto, and Zeus, Apollo and his twin sister Artemis's birth story is fascinating. As children, they are taken before their father who asked them what "gifts they desired, what they would become." Artemis, who was born first and, in the way that gods and goddesses do, helped Leto deliver her brother nine days later, wants to remain unmarried forever. She wants to hunt with a silver bow and arrows and run wild through the woods with her "own entourage of Oceanides, nymphs and hounds." Apollo refuses to answer. Zeus gives him a "bow to match his sister's. A golden tripod. A chariot pulled by swans to carry him wherever he wished."


The Muses get a nice bit of page time which includes listing the artistic endeavors they are the inspirations for. The story of Apollo and Daphne, subject of many works of art including Bernini's magnificent sculpture, and the story of Apollo and Hyacinth are both filled with action and emotion. My favorite tale is presented by Clio, the Muse of History, and so much of it is part of our everyday lives today. Apollo fell in love with a mortal woman, the Thessalian princess Koronis. He leaves a white crow to watch over her and, when this crow reports her infidelity, Apollo's rage "scorches the very air around him," which is why all crows are now black. Apollo's ego - and his deep love for his child (another crazy awesome birth story there...) make for a very compelling myth. Turns out, Asklepios, Apollo's son, is raised by Chiron, a centaur and great healer who basically trains Asklepios to be the first human doctor! In turn, Asklepios trains his daughters, Hygeia and Panacea (what what??) to be doctors! Asklepios's sad end is almost as gripping as his strange birth. But I'll leave that for you to discover!


God Stats, found in every book!




Olympians Rule!








Source: Review Copy



0 Comments on Apollo: The Brilliant One by George O'Connor, 80pp, RL 4 as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
3. Icefall by Matthew J. Kirby, 336 pp, RL 4

Icefall by Matthew J. Kirby winner of the 2012 Edgar Award for Best Juvenile Mystery. And, while this award is well deserved,  Icefall is so much more than a mystery - it is a coming of age story and a story within a story as well, with memories coming together to create something greater than the mystery itself. In fact, Icefall reminds me of Shannon Hale's Newbery Honor winning Princess

0 Comments on Icefall by Matthew J. Kirby, 336 pp, RL 4 as of 3/6/2015 4:03:00 AM
Add a Comment
4. Orpheus in the Underworld by Yvan Pommaux, 56 pp

Yvan Pommaux, beloved, multiple award-winning author and illustrator in France, has a detailed research and illustration style that we were treated too on this side of the Atlantic when TOON Graphics published  Theseus and the Minotaur last year. Pommaux's books are a very welcome addition to the shelves of graphic novels and Greek mythology. George O'Connor's graphic novel series The

0 Comments on Orpheus in the Underworld by Yvan Pommaux, 56 pp as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
5. Fable Comics Edited by Chris Duffy


Fable Comics, edited by Chris Duffy, is the third and possibly my favorite comic anthology from the fine people at First SecondNursery Rhyme Comics came first, followed by Fairy Tale Comics. As always, I need to begin by mentioning favorites contributors (reviewed on this blog) to Fable Comics like James Kochalka, George O'Connor, Charise Harper, Eleanor Davis, Maris Wicks, and Vera Brosgol.

One thing I love about all three of the books Duffy has edited are the international tales, fables and rhymes that he includes in each book. While many of the fables in Fable Comics are Aesop's, Angola, India and the work of American author Ambrose Bierce and Russian satirist Ivan Krilof are included. As Duffy's editor's note tells us, "A fable is a story with a lesson, usually - not always - starring animals. The lesson can be stated or it can be something to figure out. But they are, in essence, bossy stories with a message for you." This has to be one of the best characterizations ever. He also notes that the cartoonists were allowed to "embellish the stories (as they like to do)" but he made sure that the integral lesson of the fable remained. These embellishments, along with a glorious variety of illustration style, is what make all three of the books in this series so much fun to read over and over. If you don't own any of these collections, Fable Comics is a great place to start. If you already own Nursery Rhyme Comics and or Fairy Tale Comics, then this new book is a must!




The other two excellent books in this series:


Nursery Rhyme Comics


 Fairy Tale Comics


Source: Review Copy


0 Comments on Fable Comics Edited by Chris Duffy as of 11/18/2015 5:50:00 AM
Add a Comment
6. Treasury of Norse Mythology: Stories of Intrigue, Trickery, Love and Revenge by Donna Jo Napoli, illustrations by Christina Balit, 192 pp, RL 4


With the recent movies from the Marvel Universe featuring Thor, along with Rick Riordan's new series Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard in which the titular character discovers he is the son of a Norse god (and why couldn't it have been Astrid Chase discovering she's the daughter of a Norse goddess, Rick?) Norse mythology is hot enough to melt a fjord right now. And, while the I love the D'Aulaires and their own collection of Norse mythology, it doesn't always grab the attention of readers. With Treasury of Norse Mythology: Stories of Intrigue, Trickery, Love and Revenge, children's book author Donna Jo Napoli brings the same wonderful storytelling skills to  that she brought to the Treasury of Egyptian Mythology and the Treasury of Greek Mythology, all three of which are marvelously illustrated, with beautiful borders on every page, by Christina Balit.


Napoli's introduction is superb, providing insight into the nature of Norse mythology that will help young readers understand how and why it is different from Greek and Egyptian mythologies. She tells readers that the was rich tradition of storytelling by traveling poets in Scandanavia, especially during the long winter nights, along with a devotion to the Old Norse language despite the widespread use of Latin during the Middle Ages.  Add to this the fierce weather and powerful forces of nature that exist in Scandinavia, along with the communal nature of the Norse gods who assembled for votes, reflecting the democratic society of Norway in which all men (not women or slaves) had a vote,  and you being to understand why Thor is a comic book hero today



Treasury of Norse Mythology: Stories of Intrigue, Trickery, Love and Revenge has back matter that includes a map of the ancient Norse world and a timeline of Norse history. There is also a cast of characters with the names and attributes of the deities, although no phonetic pronunciations, which I would have liked. I struggled with the consonant-filled names as I read. However, Napoli's introduction is followed by a note on Norse names that explains the Old Norse alphabet, the use of nominative case markers and her choice to anglicize the names. She also includes sites where readers can find more information about Old Norse as well as a video link that lets readers hear the language.


Another aspect of Treasury of Norse Mythology: Stories of Intrigue, Trickery, Love and Revenge that I especially like are the side notes that explain and add understanding to the stories in the book. The importance of the number nine in Norse mythology, the woes of beauty (women really don't fare well in Norse mythology...) and winter travel and more all get a paragraph or two and are fascinating. Napoli's afterword is fascinating and helped me make sense of the sometimes strange path of the stories. She notes the three main inconsistencies she encountered in the stories as she draws from various sources. Logical inconsistencies (like Loki's shape-shifting abilities not always coming into play) factual inconsistencies (like Odin starving for meat when he is supposed to live in wine alone) and inconsistencies of time. Interestingly, Napoli shares that she has found time inconsistencies in Greek and Egyptian myths as well, noting that this could be due to the many authors writing down the tales at different times. She ends on this interesting thought that reflects her knowledge and understanding of her subject matter, "Why can't time simply fold back on itself, especially in a  world riddled with magic?"




Source: Review Copy


0 Comments on Treasury of Norse Mythology: Stories of Intrigue, Trickery, Love and Revenge by Donna Jo Napoli, illustrations by Christina Balit, 192 pp, RL 4 as of 11/20/2015 5:30:00 AM
Add a Comment
7. The Red Pyramid : The Kane Chronicles, Book 1, by Rick Riordan, 516 pp, RL 4

<!-- START INTERCHANGE - THE RED PYRAMID -->if(!window.igic__){window.igic__={};var d=document;var s=d.createElement("script");s.src="http://iangilman.com/interchange/js/widget.js";d.body.appendChild(s);} <!-- END INTERCHANGE --> This review of The Red Pyramid is really an academic practice on my part. The books of Rick Riordan do not need my, or anybody's, publicity as, like Harry

0 Comments on The Red Pyramid : The Kane Chronicles, Book 1, by Rick Riordan, 516 pp, RL 4 as of 3/7/2014 5:54:00 AM
Add a Comment
8. The Savage Fortress by Sarwat Chadda, 292 pp, RL 5

Thanks to a fellow bookseller for introducing me to The Savage Fortress by Sarwat Chadda! I love a good fantasy story that employs fairy tale or mythological characters, creatures and plots, but don't always love what authors do with them. I read The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan and didn't quite click with his writing style. I gave The Red Pyramid a shot because I wanted to give Riordan

0 Comments on The Savage Fortress by Sarwat Chadda, 292 pp, RL 5 as of 7/18/2014 4:21:00 AM
Add a Comment
9. Mini Myths: Play Nice, HERCULES! and Be Patient, PANDORA! by Joan Holub and Leslie Patricelli

Mythology for toddlers? No matter what your opinion on this subject, Joan Holub, prolific children's book author and creator of the Goddess Girls series of chapter books, the sixteenth book of which will be published soon and illustrated by Leslie Patricelli, creator of a hilarious, very fun series of board books (see below) are the perfect pair to have a go at this concept. Mini Myths, a

0 Comments on Mini Myths: Play Nice, HERCULES! and Be Patient, PANDORA! by Joan Holub and Leslie Patricelli as of 10/1/2014 4:57:00 AM
Add a Comment
10. Catch That Cookie! by Hallie Durand, illustrated by David Small

If you don't already have a preschool or school age child, you may not know just how enthralling the story of the Gingerbread Man is to little kids. I think they love this story because it satisfies many of their most basic instincts, drives and interests. There is food, specifically cookies with candy on them. There is a little (cookie) boy behaving badly and being downright sassy. And

0 Comments on Catch That Cookie! by Hallie Durand, illustrated by David Small as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
11. Egg & Spoon by Gregory Maguire, 479 pp, RL 5

Many of you probably know Gregory Maguire as the author of Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West. I discovered it a year or so after it was published in 1995 in the bargain section of the bookstore where I worked and remember how thrilling it was to read back then. Long a fan of fairy tales, I was amazed to learn that a meal could be made of a behind the scenes, adult

0 Comments on Egg & Spoon by Gregory Maguire, 479 pp, RL 5 as of 10/27/2014 6:27:00 AM
Add a Comment
12. Theseus and the Minotaur by Yvan Pommaux, 49 pp, RL: 3

Theseus and the Minotaur is a new book by beloved French author Yvan Pommaux, known for his detailed research and illustration style, who has won many prestigious awards and had three schools named after him! Theseus and the Minotaur is also a new title from TOON Graphics, a new line of graphic novels for kids reading at 3rd grade level and above created by the amazing François Mouly and

0 Comments on Theseus and the Minotaur by Yvan Pommaux, 49 pp, RL: 3 as of 11/28/2014 4:54:00 AM
Add a Comment
13. Winterfrost by Michelle Houts, 259pp, RL: 4

Winterfrost  by Michelle Houts features a mythical creature that captured my imagination as a child - gnomes, also known as "nisse." Gnomes was one of the first books I remember purchasing with my own, hard earned money, and I think it also is the first encyclopedic book about a fictional creature. Winterfrost  is a superb story that combines holiday and cultural traditions with a story of

0 Comments on Winterfrost by Michelle Houts, 259pp, RL: 4 as of 12/8/2014 4:41:00 AM
Add a Comment
14. Icefall by Matthew J. Kirby, 336 pp, RL 4

Icefall by Matthew J. Kirby winner of the 2012 Edgar Award for Best Juvenile Mystery. And, while this award is well deserved,  Icefall is so much more than a mystery - it is a coming of age story and a story within a story as well, with memories coming together to create something greater than the mystery itself. In fact, Icefall reminds me of Shannon Hale's Newbery Honor winning Princess

0 Comments on Icefall by Matthew J. Kirby, 336 pp, RL 4 as of 2/27/2015 5:08:00 AM
Add a Comment
15. Chapter Books with Themes from Greek Mythology

With the tremendous popularity of Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson series, many other books with Greek gods and goddesses as characters with themes from Greek Mythology guiding the plots have hit the shelves. I thought I'd round up all the titles I could think of for you here. While the Percy Jackson quintet has enticed masses of boys to read books, interestingly enough, all the books in this post

1 Comments on Chapter Books with Themes from Greek Mythology, last added: 3/26/2010
Display Comments Add a Comment
16. Gods of Manhattan by Scott Mebus, 340 pp, RL 5

It's really hard not to pick up a kid's book with the title Gods of Manhattan, especially when the cover art is by the current god of fantasy cover art for kids, Brandon Dorman. When Scott Mebus' first book for kids came out in 2008 I picked it up and read the jacket flap and was instantly intrigued by this book that created an American mythology with historical figures from New York City's

0 Comments on Gods of Manhattan by Scott Mebus, 340 pp, RL 5 as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
17. The Shark King: A Toon Book by R Kikuo Johnson, 39 pp, RL 1.5

When I write a review, I try to be professional and refrain from gushing, but sometimes a book is so spectacular that I can't help myself. The Shark King by R Kikuo Johnson, the newest title from TOON Books is one of those. The Shark King, which I hope might become a series, has action, adventure, mythology, exotic (to me) locales, and a playfully curious, brave protagonist in Nanaue (pronounced

0 Comments on The Shark King: A Toon Book by R Kikuo Johnson, 39 pp, RL 1.5 as of 3/29/2012 12:12:00 AM
Add a Comment
18. Neversink by Barry Wolverton with illustrations by Sam Nielson, 285 pp, RL 5

The cover art and superb interior illustrations from Sam Nielson are what drew me to Neversink by Barry Wolverton. As a reader, books populated with societies of anthropomorphized animals are not my favorite. Of this type of book I thought, very wrongly, I see now, "Why not just tell the story with humans?" Wolverton, who has written for National Geographic and Discovery Networks and long

0 Comments on Neversink by Barry Wolverton with illustrations by Sam Nielson, 285 pp, RL 5 as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
19. The Paradise Trap by Catherine Jinks, 344 pp, RL 4

Catherine Jinks' newest book, The Paradise Trap,  is a surprise for two big reasons - the continual presence of adults in the story and the fact that the villain at the heart of the story is a character from Greek mythology. The Paradise Trap also stands out among the recent crop of fantasy novels for being set squarely in the United States. Even the fantasy world that is created, the

0 Comments on The Paradise Trap by Catherine Jinks, 344 pp, RL 4 as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
20. Project Jackalope by Emily Ecton, 253 pp, RL 5

Project Jackalope by  Emily Ecton is one of those books that fills a very important, once over looked niche in the world middle grade kid's books. Although a different beast from Project Jackalope, Jeff Kinney and his Wimpy Kid books have made writing books about boys who are not orphaned wizards popular again. The awesome Tom Angleberger exploded the field with his very funny, thoughtful

0 Comments on Project Jackalope by Emily Ecton, 253 pp, RL 5 as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
21. Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox by Matt Luckhurst

I really like a good Paul Bunyan story and have two favorites (scroll to the bottom for titles.) Now, after reading Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox: The Great Pancake Adventure by Matt Luckhurst, I have THREE favorites. There are some things you just have to include in a Paul Bunyan story and there are plenty of things you can shape and craft into your own story and Luckhurst does this

0 Comments on Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox by Matt Luckhurst as of 9/25/2012 1:11:00 AM
Add a Comment
22. Chapter Books with Themes from Greek Mythology

 I first posted this roundup in 2010. Since then, a few more books have hit the shelves so I thought I'd share this again. Also, don't forget my list of reference books on Greek Mythology "http://www.books4yourkids.com/2010/03/greek-mythology-for-kids-story.html"target="_blank">here . With the tremendous popularity of Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson series, many other books with Greek gods and

4 Comments on Chapter Books with Themes from Greek Mythology, last added: 4/9/2013
Display Comments Add a Comment
23. Greek Mythology for Kids: Story Collections and re-tellings of The Odyssey

The D'Aulaires, Edgar and Ingri, met at art school in Munich in 1921 and published their first children's book ten years later and, up until 1980 when Ingri died, contributed a number of distinguished children's books, most of them non-fiction. Their book of Greek Mythology remains the biggest selling collection for children and is often used as a textbook. The collection is thorough and

1 Comments on Greek Mythology for Kids: Story Collections and re-tellings of The Odyssey, last added: 3/27/2013
Display Comments Add a Comment
24. Flight of the Phoenix (Nathaniel Fludd, Beastologist) by R L La Fevers, illustrated by Kelly Murphy, 138 pp, RL 3

First reviewed in 2009, RL La Fevers's Nathaniel Fludd: Beastologist series is the PERFECT next step for readers ready to move on from Magic Tree House! Rich with mythological creatures, adventure and airplanes, this series is wonderfully written and illustrated. And, all 4 books are in paperback! Before I start slinging superlatives, I need to thank RL La Fevers, author of the equally

6 Comments on Flight of the Phoenix (Nathaniel Fludd, Beastologist) by R L La Fevers, illustrated by Kelly Murphy, 138 pp, RL 3, last added: 8/1/2013
Display Comments Add a Comment
25. Gods of Manhattan by Scott Mebus, 340 pp, RL 5

First reviewed in 2011, Gods of Manhattan is very much like Wildwood in that it is a fantasy squarely set in America as well as a fantasy that presents a world within a world. This time, there is a ghost world of historical figures running New York City alongside the flash and blood politicians. Excellent fantasy and adventure and really great history as well! It's really hard not to pick up

0 Comments on Gods of Manhattan by Scott Mebus, 340 pp, RL 5 as of 8/4/2013 4:42:00 AM
Add a Comment

View Next 3 Posts