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Stone Soup (Aladdin Picture Books) Paperback – August 1, 1997


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 480L (What's this?)
  • Series: Aladdin Picture Books
  • Paperback: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Aladdin; Reprint edition (August 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0689711034
  • ISBN-13: 978-0689711039
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.2 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.3 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (70 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,131 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This old French tale about soldiers who trick miserly villages into making them a feast won a Caldecott Medal when Brown retold and illustrated it in 1947.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From the Publisher

Three soldiers came marching down the road towards a French village. The peasants seeing them coming, suddenly became very busy, for soldiers are often hungry. So all the food was hidden under mattresses or in barns. There followed a battle of wits, with the soldiers equal to the occasion. Stone soup? Why, of course, they could make a wonderful soup of stones...but, of course, one must add a carrot or two...some meat...so it went. Marcia Brown has made of this old tale a very gay book, a carnival of activity, of dancing and laughter. So much goes on in the pictures that children who have once heard the story will turn to them again and again, retelling the story for themselves. A French version of the story is available under the title Une Drole de Soupe.END --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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See all 70 customer reviews
Great children's story.
Jill Risko
If you want to teach life lessons, this book is just a wonderful way to do it, when is comes to sharing what you have.
Child Writer
I remember being read this book by my mom.
Christopher Lewis

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

53 of 55 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on April 26, 2004
Format: Hardcover
It's funny how a single story changes with the telling. These days the classic tale of how to make stone soup has been told in a myriad of different tellings and versions. But if you harken back a little to Marci Brown's 1947 concoction, you see clearly that the story can be a little more sardonic than its alternate versions. In this tale, villagers are tricked out of their greed and fear into sharing and enjoying life with their neighbors. And it's all thanks to a soup that doesn't even exist.
Three soldiers make their way home from an unnamed war in an unnamed country. Passing a village, the men ask the townspeople for some food and warm beds. Unsurprisingly, the peasants (who, one presumes, have been violently scared into this state of distrust through years of misuse at the hands of soldiers such as these) feign a lack of food or room for the men. Thinking on their feet, the soldiers proclaim that there is nothing for it then but to make stone soup. The astonished town watches and aids the men in their task, providing them with a huge soup cauldron, water, and whatever ingredients the soldiers casually mention. By the end of the evening everyone sits down to a hearty meal and after a good night of carousing the men are given the best beds in town. "And fancy, made from stones!"

The soldiers in this tale are jovial fellows, just as comfortable fooling foolish peasants into acts of selflessness as they are dancing with pretty maids and drinking. That so much joy can come simply from sharing with your fellow man is a moral insinuated from the tale, rather than explicitly spelled out to the reader. Brown's accompanying illustrations encompass roughly four colors; red, black, white, and grey.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Human Libber on July 22, 2006
Format: Paperback
I remember several stories that I loved very much as a child. One of them is the story of "Stone Soup". I saw it on the Captain Kangaroo television show--- the Captain read the story and the illustrations were shown page by page. I was delighted and spellbound. Everyone knows that you don't give anything away. To do so would be very foolish. Yet, in this story the people do give food away! And in the end, everyone shares in a feast because each one provided one small part of the meal. This is very moving to me. And a lesson that shapes my life every day. Thank you Marcia Brown for your retelling of this timeless tale, and to Bob Keeshan, the Captain, for bringing me this joyful tale. Larry Host, Sacramento, California, July 22, 2006
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32 of 38 people found the following review helpful By R. D. Allison (dallison@biochem.med.ufl.edu) on May 12, 1999
Format: Paperback
This children's book, based on an old French folk tale, is about three soldiers who try to convince a small village to provide them with some food. The villagers say they are too poor and can't. The soldiers then reply that they will make stone soup out of stones and water and are able to trick the villagers into having a village-wide feast. Yeats had a one-act play roughly based on this folk tale as well. The book was a 1948 Caldecott Honor book (i.e., a runner-up to the Medal winner) for best illustration in a book for children.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Ulyyf on July 17, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have burned through three different editions of Stone Soup, not liking each one (one had ugly weird illustrations, one was too sappy and rhyming, one was too modern and snotty) until I decided to try out the classic, Caldecott Honor version.

WHAT a change. THESE are the classic illustrations most of us grew up with. THESE are the soldiers and the peasants we read about. THIS is the story I'm keeping for my nieces. The telling isn't too clever, or too silly, or too watered-down, or too grown-up. The illustrations are neither too slick or too consciously old-fashioned. (Sheesh, I feel like I'm reviewing Goldilocks here!) I love it, love it, love it!

Please remember that this is a bit of a lengthy book for the smaller kids.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Volkert Volkersz on May 2, 2001
Format: Hardcover
"Stone Soup" is a favorite folktale in our elementary school library. I just had a class of second graders beg me to read this Caldecott Honor book to them, and--of course--all our copies were immediately checked out.
I'm continually surprised--but pleased--that modern kids still enjoy these older illustrations by Marcia Brown, with their limited colors (see cover). This tale is a true classic, and this version has been around for many generations. It's part of the folk tradition in more ways than one. Let's hope we keep "sharing" this tale about sharing for generations to come!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Paul Martin on August 20, 2000
Format: Hardcover
If this book has one downfall, it's that the story is a little long. But that is overshadowed by the fact that the story is so interesting for children and parents, and the illustrations are first-rate.
Watch the hungry soldiers use their cunning and imagination to make a meal out of nothing. They entice the local towns people to share their food in the making of stone soup.
Concepts include: sharing, imagination, the will to make things happen, etc.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By M. Russell on February 28, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This is a delightful old French tale that teaches the importance of opening your heart and sharing. The illustrations are wonderful and it's a great book for teachers to use in the classroom. Even though the story is old, the lesson that is learned is still valuable in today's society.
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