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Tales from Old Ireland Hardcover – September 1, 2000


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 1 pages
  • Publisher: Barefoot Books (September 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 190228397X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1902283975
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 8.7 x 10.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,633,543 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Tales from Old Ireland contains seven classic stories, beautifully retold by Malachy Doyle in 90 big pages. Some of the tales will be instantly familiar: "Fair, Brown, and Trembling," for example, is a straightforward version of the Cinderella story right down to the lost shoe. Others are much less well known, like the tale of the fisherman, Jack Doherty, who always wanted to meet a Merrow (a man who lives beneath the sea). Niamh Sharkey's delightfully quirky illustrations (also seen in Jack and the Beanstalk and The Gigantic Turnip) are simple and striking; a few take up a full page, and smaller ones are scattered throughout the text. While culturally specific (and complete with a pronunciation guide for names and a few unusual words), Tales of Old Ireland has universal appeal and should occupy shelf-space in every child's imagination. (Ages 5 and older) --Richard Farr

From Publishers Weekly

Northern Ireland native Doyle (Jody's Beans) celebrates his country's centuries-old oral legacy in this collection of seven stories. Traditional tales, such as "The Twelve Wild Geese" (which parallels the structure of the Brothers Grimm's "The Six Swans") and a Cinderella retelling, "Fair, Brown and Trembling," share space with some highly original individuals (e.g., the title characters in "Son of an Otter, Son of a Wolf"), and all retain a lyrical turn of phrase ("Will you do nothing to lighten our sorrow?" one of the cursed offspring asks the evil queen in "The Children of Lir"). Doyle, a conversational raconteur, wisely includes a pronunciation key for proper names that appear in the stories as well as notes on the background of the entries. Sharkey's (Jack and the Beanstalk) playfully stylized oil and gesso paintings complement the fanciful quality of the tales. Spot art breaks up the pages, and each story features one full-size painting that captures the heart of the taleAfor "The Twelve Wild Geese," 12 quilt-like squares show the birds around the edges, while a quartet of interior squares show the key characters and knitting needles for the birds' sweaters. The artist also distinguishes each tale with a unique border and its own sophisticated, muted palette. Ages 10-up. (Oct.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

More About the Author

Malachy was born in Ireland, went to college in England, brought up his children in Wales and has now returned to Ireland, where he lives on a tiny island off the coast of County Donegal.
After spells in advertising and as a special needs teacher, Malachy turned to writing children's books. He has now had over 70 published and has won many prizes, including the Parent's Choice Gold Award and the Anne Izard Storytellers' Choice Award (for 'Tales from Old Ireland'), the Nestle Children's Book Silver Award (for 'The Dancing Tiger'), the Tir na nOg Award (for 'Georgie') and the English Association Award (for 'Cow').

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on August 8, 2004
Format: Hardcover
The collaborative effort of author Malachy Doyle and artist Niamh Sharkey, Tales From Old Ireland is an anthology of seven folktales steeped in Irish history, culture, and tradition. Illustrated with carefree whimsy, they weave myths and legends about ordinary humble folk as surely as remarkable heroes. A pronounciation guide for names and a list of sources for each tale rounds out this excellent and enthusiastically recommended anthology for young readers bridging the transition between picture books and novels.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 24, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Really nicely told stories, with quirky, mesmerizing illustrations. Both author and illustrator are Irish.
Definitely worth buying - for reading AND re-reading!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Shanna Early on May 25, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This little book is filled with amazing, beautiful illustrations and entertaining stories. Anyone interested in Irish culture and folk-lore will enjoy this book. However, while this book is a fun read for older children and adults, the content of one or two of the stories might be a little bit intense for younger children, so be sure to preview the stories before reading it to the little ones. I especially like the pronunciation guide in the front for Irish names and words, which can be very difficult, and the reference page at the end that explains the origins of each story. Also, my edition came with audio c-d's of the stories.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Lisa C. Hake on April 28, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A beautiful book that includes 2 CDs with the tales told by wonderful story tellers. My daughter loves these stories and listens to the over and over and the illustrations are beautiful.
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