Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The Little Red Hen and Stone Soup

The boys and I have been very interested in Fractured Fairy Tales lately. There are so many unique versions of classic stories, from nursery rhymes to folktales to fairy tales. I love the creative spirit that goes into making something old, new again. These rewrites are so prolific, however, that my one complaint is that it is hard to find a well-written ORIGINAL story. My young boys are getting accustomed to the variations without truly knowing what they are based on. They like these books independently, but I think they would enjoy them more if they could point out the silly differences from the original.

In a serendipitous moment, I happened to grab the following books off the library shelves, without knowing they were retellings of The Little Red Hen and Stone Soup. I decided to group them here since they are all about food :)  They are really worth the read. Enjoy!

Stone Soup - Retold

Fandango Stew by David Davis; Illustrated by Ben Galbraith - Steeped in the Old West, this retelling of Stone Soup offers a commentary on the power of community when everyone works together. Two cowboys ride into town offering to share a pot of fandango bean stew. The sheriff is wary, but curiosity gets the better of the town folk and they gather around. I love the exaggerated illustrations, the repeated fandango stew song, and the Spanish vocabulary sprinkled throughout. Join Slim and his grandson Luis as they bring a town together and then ride into the sunrise!

The Little Red Hen - Retold

Cook-A-Doodle-Doo! by Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel - When Rooster finds his Great-Grandmother's cookbook (The Joy of Cooking Alone by L. R. Hen), he can't wait to try the strawberry shortcake. Of course, the dog, cat, and goose won't help, but the turtle, iguana, and pig are willing! The team starts cooking with hilarious consequences and sidebars on cooking make this is an informational how-to book, as well. You can even try Little Red Hen's famous strawberry shortcake by using the recipe at the end.

MaƱana, Iguana by Ann Whitford Paul; Illustrated by Ethan Long - When retold with a Mexican flair, The Little Red Hen is updated for a diverse audience. Iguana wants to plan a fiesta, but can't persuade her friends Tortuga (tortoise), Conejo (rabbit), or Culebra (snake) to help. The friends regret their laziness when they are not invited to the party, but they find a way to be a good friend to Iguana after all. Spanish words are included in a glossary.


  1. All of these sound good! Especially that Manana Iguana. I'll have to check it out! Thanks!

  2. I guess I have some learning to do. I don't know about the Little Red Hen to begin with. I must go look it up right now. Thanks for introducing me to these books. :)

    1. Let me know if you find a well-written original for Little Red Hen!