Fourteen traditional folktales from the different peoples of Russia featuring both clever and silly fools.
In these three imaginative stories, Jan Andrews introduces us to Quebec’s traditional folktale hero, Ti-Jean. He’s an endearing character who is both wise and foolish, and though he does find himself in hard situations (often of his own making), in the end, he somehow manages to do what needs to be done. In “Ti-Jean and the Princess of Tomboso” he eventually outwits a greedy princess; in “Ti-Jean the Marble Player” he gets the best of a pint-sized scoundrel; and in “How Ti-Jean Became a Fiddler” he turns the tables on a too-clever-for-her-own-good seigneur’s daughter, and finds true love in the process.
The youngest of a merchant’s three sons proves that he is not as foolish as he was thought to be when he trades a sackful of onions for a fortune in diamonds.
When his seven years’ wages in gold proves too heavy to carry, Jack trades it in for one thing after another until he arrives home empty-handed but convinced he is a lucky man.
The lord of Laughter, the Monarch of Mirth–if only the bumbling 17-year-old Sebastian Darke could be a successful jester like his father. The problem is Sebastian’s not funny. But after his father’s death, with no choice but to beg in the streets, the half-human, half-elf teen sets off with Max, his father’s slightly cynical Buffalope, to offer his services as a jester to King Septimus of Keladon. On the way they meet Captain Cornelius Drummel, small in stature, but the fiercest of fighters. The three rescue the fair princess Kerin, who’s being held captive by brigands, and happily escort her home. If only Sebastian knew the kidnapping was engineered by the evil King Septimus!
What can you do with a boy who tries to do things right but only leaves disaster in his wake? Readers everywhere will love to laugh at the hilarious antics of the ever-blundering Juan Bobo, Puerto Rico’s most celebrated folk character. In this rollicking Juan Bobo tale, our hero sets out to find work at the farm and the grocery. Although the tasks are simple and the directions couldn’t be clearer, he always find a way to bungle things up as only a character whose name means “Simple John” could!