cover image Stone Soup

Stone Soup

Heather Forest. August House Publishers, $16.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-87483-498-7

Forest and Gaber (previously paired for The Woman Who Flummoxed the Fairies; The Baker's Dozen) revisit this oft-told tale to demonstrate the pleasures of collaboration and mutual generosity. Two hungry travelers, denied food by the inhabitants of a mountain village, publicly declare that they can make soup from a stone. Only they need a carrot... and a potato... and a few more ingredients to make it taste really good. Everyone in the town contributes something, pronounces the soup delicious and learns the magic behind it: sharing. Gaber's bold acrylic paintings emphasize the big black soup tureen and the brightly colored vegetable ingredients. As each member of the multiracial town speaks up to offer a contribution, a speech bubble appears showing a picture of the offering. Forest's jolly prose simmers with energy: ""Bring what you've got! Put it in the pot!"" cry the travelers. Flavorful and nutritious, this classic tale is served up with a smile. A recipe for stone soup tops it off. Ages 4-8. (May) FYI: The other two folktales in the series are The Dancing Turtle: A Folktale from Brazil, retold by Pleasant DeSpain, illus. by David Boston; and a bilingual title, The Girl Who Wore Too Much: A Folktale from Thailand, retold by Margaret Read MacDonald, trans. by Supaporn Vathanaprida, illus. by Yvonne Lebrun Davis (each $15.95 ISBN -502-X; -503-8; May)