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Book Review: Aesop's Fables

When I picked up Aesop's Fables by John Cech, my first thought, honestly, was that we didn't need another version of Aesop kicking around the house. We already have 2 or 3, I'm not even sure exactly how many we own. Why? Because Aesop, whoever he actually was, writes great fables with good morals.

Wait, you didn't know we don't know exactly who Aesop is? Well, there's one reason you should get this version. The author includes a brief explanation at the end about who we think Aesop was, and also the importance of storytelling to cultural memory. These reminders alone were worth it to me as a grown-up reading this book.

But, you're not looking to get a book to read one page, are you? With this retelling of Aesop's Fables, John Cech has focused on the stories that can be narrowed down to just a few paragraphs. Each one is accompanied by a vivid illustration by Martin Jarrie. The stories are easily read, the illustrations relate to the story (not always the case in children's books, for some reason), and by isolating the moral at the end, it's a great read-with-me with a child because you can read the story, and have them read the moral, thus getting it better in their heads.

All told, this is a good introductory collection of Aesop's fables. You'll want to add others after you've had this one, as there are fables that aren't present in this work, but starting here is a great point for learning these classic tales.

Doug

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