"By midday, the air was heavy and clammy. Soon the day's rains would start. Insects chirruped and buzzed, and Mouse Deer was at the river's edge, leaning down to drink." This line from "The King's Pudding" in Usborne's 10 Ten-Minute Stories illustrates what makes these stories so enchanting: a combination of vivid storytelling with new concepts and perspectives from a varied collection of cultures.
The ten stories in this book (which do really take about 10 minutes to read - I timed it) are wonderfully diverse. They hail from all over the world: Indonesia, France, Greece, Italy, Korea, Russia, England, Denmark. I was familiar with four of the stories already, but the other six were new to me, and I loved being introduced to some classic tales from other cultures! And learning new things, like that mouse deer are real things. :)
Besides the stories themselves being diverse, I love that each story is accompanied by its own style of illustration. The collection was designed by Laura Nelson and Lenka Hrehova and has a variety of authors and illustrators contributing, which leads to a diversity of language and artistic style. Check out the photos below for a sampling. Each story has its own mood in both narration and illustration - you really feel transported when you switch from one tale to the next.
Here's a quick overview of each of the ten stories:
So there you have it! These are each unique, beautifully written and illustrated stories that will add flavor to your nightly bedtime book routine. They are long enough to include depth and complexity, but short enough that your young audience won't lose interest before the final page.
It's that book you'll read again and again until your audience starts reading it to you.
Hi there! I'm Christine - Usborne Books & More independent consultant, kids' book fan, English teacher, mom of two boys.