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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all itâ?TMs still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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Fables Paperback – September 7, 1983


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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Arnold Lobel (1933-1987) was the award-winning author and illustrator of many beloved children's books, including the classic I Can Read books about Frog and Toad, and the Caldecott Medal winning Fables.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 4
  • Paperback: 48 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Reprint edition (September 7, 1983)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0064430464
  • ISBN-13: 978-0064430463
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.1 x 11.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,780 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Arnold Lobel (1933-1987) was the award-winning author and illustrator of many beloved children's books, including the classic I Can Read books about Frog and Toad, and the Caldecott Medal winning Fables.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

53 of 56 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on July 6, 2004
Format: Turtleback
I'm on an Arnold Lobel kick these days. Having breezed through the sweet, "A Treeful of Pigs", stopped to admire his treasury of nursery rhymes (two thumbs way way up on that one), and genuflected in the face of the eternally classic tales of Frog and Toad I'm actually getting around to reading his 1981 Caldecott winning picture book, "Fables". Lobel deserves every inch of praise he received for this admirable work. Imagine how difficult it must have been to create not one, not two, but twenty absolutely new fables filled to the brim with wit and wisdom! Not an easy task. Still, Lobel not only faced up to the challenge but also accomplished it in a manner best befitting the gentleman he truly was. These are fabulous fables.

Each tale contained in this book is acted out by a variety of different animals. No two stories contain the same kind of animals (with the possible exception of one fable centering on a hen and another on a rooster). The stories are short and easy for youngsters to understand. They are usually followed up with little moral lessons along the lines of "At times, a change of routine can be most healthful" or "When the need is strong, there are those who will believe anything". Admittedly, these are half a step away from becoming fortune cookie messages. Still, there's no denying that each and every one is true. Sometimes they become particularly poignant. I am thinking of the story about a young mischievous kangaroo that would throw spitballs in school and put tacks on chairs. When his teacher went to his home to inform his parents of their son's terrible behavior, he found them throwing spitballs at one another and doing just the kinds of things the little one had done in school. Moral: "A child's conduct will reflect the ways of his parents".
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Format: Paperback
This book won the Caldecott Medal for the best illustrated children's book of 1981. The book contains twenty one-page fables, facing a one page illustration of the key moment in each fable. The illustrations bring the morals of these tales to life in ways that will keep your children laughing. That will make the lessons more memorable, as well as more entertaining.
The fables are uneven in the relevance and importance of their messages. I graded the book down one star for the several fables that are more irreverent than relevant. You can obtain more benefit for your child if you selectively read the fables to emphasize the more important ones.
For an example of a weaker one consider The Pelican and the Crane. This is a story about a crane who invites a pelican to tea. The pelican is horribly uncouth and messy. The pelican complains that "no one ever calls me." The moral is stated as "when one is a social failure, the reasons are as clear as day." The narrower moral is about being inconsiderate, but that is never quite spelled out. So even the weaker fables can be tightened up with a little parental explanation.
I thought that the following stories were comparable in quality to Aesop's Fables:
The Crocodile in the Bedroom ("Without a doubt, there is such a thing as too much order."; The Ducks and the Fox ("At times, a change of routine can be most healthful."); King Lion and the Beetle ("It is the high and mighty who have the longest distance to fall."); The Lobster and the Crab ("Even the taking of small risks will add excitement to life."); The Hen and the Apple Tree ("It is always difficult to pose as something one is not."); The Baboon's Umbrella ("Advice from friends is like the weather.
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41 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Eileen F. Wright on November 17, 2002
Format: Paperback
Amazon.com has this graded as for Baby-Preschool. No way. These are fables with morals, and the vocabulary is at least second grade. I teach Third Grade and this book accompanies my reading series.
There are some stories I like better than others for both content and message. (some I don't use) I'd recommend it for Second to Fifth graders.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 17, 1998
Format: Hardcover
My eight year old daughter came home from school with this book and proceeded to read many of the stories out loud (to me and to anyone else who would listen). The book has wonderful illustrations and each of the stories is brief and concise yet, entertaining. My daughter was eager to own the book and begged for me to buy it for her. At the end of each story is a one sentence 'moral' which helps focus the reader and helps her pay attention to the meaning of the fable.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By "staceylynn32" on November 19, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Fables is a collection of fables that the author made up himself. They aren't the traditional fables of the world, but they still all contain a moral lesson. Each story is about animal characters, which makes the stories very enchanting.
Each story is very short and is contained within the borders of one page each. This is a good quality for a short story book because a story can be told in a very short amount of time. The whole book does not have to be read in order for the reader to benefit from it. The meaning of every story is stated at the bottom of every page. This is an advantage to the reader because they do not have to read the entire story to figure out if they want to read that particular fable.
Each fable is accompanied by its own colorful illustration. The illustrations are large and cover the entire page opposite the fable that it belongs to. Some of the illustrations are rather humorous and get the reader's attention before they even begin reading the story.
This would be a good book to have in a younger aged classroom. The stories are short so the reader is not bogged down by a long drawn out story. They are also humorous and are sure to get a laugh out of any youngster.
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