Koshka's Tales: Stories from Russia

James Mayhew, Author Larousse Kingfisher Chambers $16.95 (77p) ISBN 978-1-85697-943-6
A vibrant and accessible collection of five Russian folktales is woven together by the spirited narration of Koshka the cat. In the first episode, ``The Tale of Tsar Saltan,'' a tsaritsa hopes to bear seven sons but is thwarted by jealous sisters. She is cast upon the sea, one son hidden with her, and surfaces on a distant island where dwells Koshka. The garrulous cat spins stories of such legendary figures as the Firebird and Baba Yaga, with each tale interspersed with further developments concerning Tsar Saltan and his wife. Linked in this way the stories suggest the wonderful richness and complexity of the Russian storytelling tradition. Mayhew acknowledges his debt to opera, and his love of ornamentation is evident in dramatically bordered text and illustrations that sparkle like a Faberge egg. Ages 5-up. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/04/1993
Release date: 10/01/1993
Genre: Children's
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