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Æthelthryth the Texan

Arabian Nights for <10yo set- preferably illustrated?

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Can anyone suggest some editions of Arabian Nights for the mid-elementary set? I would love illustrated picture books, even if I have to buy stories separately. I'm seeing some compilations on Amazon but the reviews for those I've looked at so far are horrible. I don't want the fully translated versions- those are a bit too in depth for us at this point. Just a few stories- like Alladin, Ali Baba, etc. would suffice. I would really be thrilled if I could find something gorgeously illustrated. 

Suggestions? 

ETA- I have Lang, but am looking for something a bit more abbreviated. 

Edited by Æthelthryth the Texan

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There's Sinbad the Sailor illustrated by Qunetin Blake. I read it aloud to dd a few years ago, and remember it being quite readable.

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I LOVE the Tenggren illustrated version for the lovely COLOR images, and the text is pretty good too. Ten stories (including Ali Baba, Aladdin and Sinbad, plus a great story of The Magic Horse) + the Scheherazade frame story.

You might also check out the Geraldine Maccaughrean version for another readable text. An illustrator is listed, but I can't tell from the "look inside" feature on Amazon just how many illustrations there are. There are 34 stories, BUT many of them are the part 2 and part 3 of a story, AND they are all short -- just 2-4 pages long. Sinbad, Aladin (called "Ala al din") and Ali-baba are included.

For short and simple, with a few b&w illustrations, you can't beat the Dover Thrift edition of Aladdin and Other Favorite Arabian Nights. Includes Aladdin, Ali-baba, Sindbad, and The Enchanted Horse, plus 2 other tales.

For just Sinbad stories, Ludmilla Zeman (who did the 3-picture book series of Gilgamesh) has a 2-book series of Sindbad stories -- yummy illustrations, with meaty but not too long stories. Each is a stand-alone Sindbad story.

ETA: I just saw this National Geographic edition, with yummy color illustrations. Downside: the text is in small type and full page at a time. It has 23 stories -- but 7 are the 7 voyages of Sindbad; also had Ali Baba and Aladdin, plus the Scheherazade ("Shah Rayar") frame story to open.

On a completely different note -- I ADORE this Hallmark Arabian Nights TV-mini series (almost 4 hours) with several different tales, and a focus on Scheherazade. A little s*xy at the beginning, but likely to go over most young kids' heads. The writing is absolutely wonderful, and the costumes are scrumptious. Not to mention a very young Andy Serkis playing Ali Baba's (Rufus Sewell!) foolish and greedy brother. 😄

Edited by Lori D.
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These are all perfect! Thank you both! 

We ordered the Nat Geo one at his choosing, and the Audible book to go with it to start. That's going to save me a LOT of reading. I had no idea Aladdin was such a loong story until I went blind reading the print from the Lang Blue Fairy book today, LOL. 

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@Lori D.- I thought you would find this funny. We ordered the Nat Geo one as mentioned and it arrived a few days ago. He listened to it with the audio book at first, but tonight he asked me to read him Aladin. I've only read him the Lang version previously, and of course seen the Disney movie. I open the book, and am thinking, "This is really weird. Why are these drawing looking like they're out of China??".....and then low and behold, it says "In China...." I had NO idea Aladin took place in China all this time, much less than Aladin was Chinese!  Wow! I'm learning so much here. Anyway, just thought you would get a kick out of that, LOL. Ds and I are both learning a lot from this book! 😁

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15 minutes ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

@Lori D.- I thought you would find this funny. We ordered the Nat Geo one as mentioned and it arrived a few days ago. He listened to it with the audio book at first, but tonight he asked me to read him Aladin. I've only read him the Lang version previously, and of course seen the Disney movie. I open the book, and am thinking, "This is really weird. Why are these drawing looking like they're out of China??".....and then low and behold, it says "In China...." I had NO idea Aladin took place in China all this time, much less than Aladin was Chinese!  Wow! I'm learning so much here. Anyway, just thought you would get a kick out of that, LOL. Ds and I are both learning a lot from this book! 😁


LOL! I had that exact same reaction the first time I read Aladdin in the Arabian Nights... "So this is set in China? Cool!" You guys really might enjoy the Hallmark Arabian Nights TV-mini series when you're done reading. (Just preview the first 5 minutes -- I think that is the the only part that is a little ... *ahem* ... you could actually skip over that if you felt very uncomfortable about it for your kids, and start where Saheedi wakes up from that scene, which turns out to be a nightmare.

And -- so glad one of the versions has turned out to be a success and enjoyable for you both! 😄 Warmest regards, Lori D.

Edited by Lori D.
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