Genre: Children’s Mythology (7+)
UK Publication: 5th March 2020
I was lucky enough to be sent a copy of this wonderful book as past of the Darkroom Tours Blog Tour. I’m so lucky that I received a copy as I got to share it with my class which have adored it!
A brilliant, inclusive collection of traditional tales from around the world featuring amazing women and girls. Once upon a time, there was a handsome prince who – no, that’s not right! Once upon a time, there were strong, fierce women who plotted, schemed, took action, showed kindness, used magic and trickery, and made their own destiny. From the long-haired Petrosinella who escaped the tower and broke the spell that the ogress had cast over her and Nana Miriam who beat a hippo using politeness and magic, to Kate Crackernuts who tried to save her stepsister from her mother’s curse, these are stories of girls doing it for themselves! With stories drawn from all over the world, including China, Scotland, Armenia, Italy and Nigeria, Lari Don presents heroine stories that don’t leave girls sitting around waiting to be saved by the handsome prince.
Title: Fierce, Fearless and Free
Author: Lari Don
Release Date: 5th March 2020
Page Count: 160
This book is a compilation of retellings of myths and legends from around the world, the majority of which I and my class had never heard of. All feature strong young women and girls who can hold their own, and can think and fight their way out of any situation.
I teach Year 3, so 7 and 8 year olds. I was particularly interested to see how the boys would react to having a book full of female protagonists (they loved it!). Every time I picked up the book the room would go silent, every time there was a plot twist the children gasped. If I had to stop reading part way through a story there were groans of disappointment and cries of ‘Just a bit longer!’
My class were very excited to share their thoughts about the stories, and they loved the majority of them. Their favourite seemed to be ‘Goddess vs Mountain’ as according to them they ‘didn’t realise someone so small could defeat something so big’, my heart melted when some of them began to talk about how ‘if the goddess can defeat the mountain then I can be brave’. Honestly. I live for moments like this as a teacher.
My favourite part of sharing the book was at the end of World Book Day when my class all snuggled up on the floor, closed their eyes and just listened to me read the stories for half an hour. They also loved me getting the globe out to show them where all the different stories originated from.
I highly recommend this book as it’s perfect for either a different bedtime story, different story for your class each day or for a child who would like a shorter read to keep them going. It’s also great for all children to show them stories from around the world, and strong female leads. The children are desperate for me to put this one in the book corner on Monday and I know it will be flying off the shelves!
Any other recommendations for books I could read to my class?