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Children's classics; I need recommendations

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I want to get more classics in my children's book collection.


So far I know I want to get:


- a book of fairy tales (Jack and the Beanstalk, etc)


- Aesop's Fables (but WHICH version? :confused: Please share which one you love and WHY.)


My oldest is almost 9 yrs old and I never heard of Aesop's Fables until this year. :001_huh: :glare: :laugh: :sleep: I read a few as a kid and remember them to this day but I had no clue who "Aesop" was until recently!


I have James Herriott's Treasury for Children which we love. I have Usborne's Greek Myths. And I have The Real Mother Goose. I can't think of other "classics" I already have.


What are the other BIG classics?



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Some my dc have enjoyed:


Winnie the Pooh, House at Pooh Corner

Tom Sawyer

Peter Pan

Swiss Family Robinson

A Jungle Book

The Just So Stories, and Rikki Tikki Tavi

Tales of the Arabian Nights

Chronicles of Narnia ( some may not consider this a classic, but I do)

Story of Dr. Doolittle

A Little Princess

Black Beauty

Five Little Peppers

Treasure Island


Wizard of Oz series

Mary Poppins series

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea

Freckles, and A Girl of the Limberlost

Little Women

Little Men


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Photo Ninja gave you a great list! Another good resource is The Read-Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease. It includes picture books as well as classics and more recent favorites.


Another "book about books" that I love is Honey for a Child's Heart by Gladys Hunt.


I'm sure you can find both at your library. Have you tried asking your children's librarian? Some can be super nice and helpful.


eta - about Aesop's Fables - I have this one - Aesop's Fables and this one and this one that I mainly bought for the lovely illustrations. Yes, my name is Laura and I have a book-buying problem. :) I think for the fables, just take a look through several different versions and see which one you enjoy reading the most.

Edited by Mothersweets
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My 7yods loves "the trojan horse" by emily little. It's actually a level 5 reader, so I read it to him.


treasure Island

hans christian anderson

peter pan

beatrix potter

winnie the pooh

James Herriot



some of 1dd (classic major) favorites from when she was a child:

Grimm's fairy tales

D'Aulaires' Book of Greek Myths (they have other subjects as well)

The Little Princess

Tolkein (most of my kids read this when they were 10/11)


aesop's fables (I have ash and highton as I like the great variety of artists/styles illistrating them.)

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I don't know if they're considered classics but I like the books in the Sonlight catalog. Also, I've found other book catalogs helpful - Chinaberry, Beautiful Feet books, the Five-in-a-Row book lists.


You could also ask the children's librarian at your library for suggestions, too.


Do a search at amazon.com for "children's classics" and tons of stuff comes up.

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You might also consider a volume which contains Mother Goose Nursery rhymes such as this one -- I Saw Esau: The Schoolchild's Pocket Book.


From Publishers Weekly


This inspired collaboration marries the earliest work of the Opies--British folklorists who for four decades charted the territory of childhood through schoolchildren's language--with new illustrations that show Sendak at his finest. With the shape and heft of a handbook, the volume is, in effect, a primer of children's humor and lore. Many rhymes are instantly familiar; others are less so--especially those with a British tinge. Merely perusing the Contents page, with such tantalizing listings as "Guile-Malicious" and "Guile-Innocent," is a delectable exercise. Because the Opies' particular genius lay in mapping the verbal turf of children themselves--and not adults' often sanitized versions--the rhymes they collected portray not only the playfulness of childhood but its occasional crudeness and cruelty as well. For the same reason, they exude spontaneity and energy. Sendak's illustrations pick up this energy and add their own. His characters are, variously, mischievous, sprightly, gnarly and spectral, and possessed of a seemingly endless array of expressions. Appealing and immediately accessible, they are drawn in simple, clean lines that recall his early work and painted with a broad palette that ranges from rich russets to soft indigos. The text and art are seamlessly interactive: small figures chase each other around the type; larger illustrations mingle images from several verses. And Sendak's ability to create provocative psychological dimension is in full evidence as well. The sequence illustrating the ubiquitous "Rain, rain, go away" is accompanied by a series showing a child's mother gradually transformed into a protective tree; the figure pelted in "Sticks and stones" is a skeleton itself. The republication of these rhymes brings the Opies' work full circle; the book seems a satisfying culmination of Sendak's gifts as well. Ages 5-up.

Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.




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This is the version of Aesop's Fables that we have and love. I love Pinkney's illustrations.


That is the one we prefer over Milo Winter's version. The illustrations are wonderful. I also have a paperback of another version. I'm pretty sure it is this one. The table of contents lists the fables by moral instead of by character. It is helpful when some random moral pops into your head and you need to figure out which fable it was.

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