Book seven of my challenge and I’ve gone for something a lot different than what I’ve been reading, but the cover was just too pretty to pass up.
From the West African fable of Anansi the Spider, to Michabo, the magical hare who rebuilt the world and Tanuki, the sweet but troublesome raccoon-dog of Japanese folklore, Mythopedia is an encyclopedia of mythical creatures that covers legends, tales and myths from around the world.
Lovingly created by the illustration duo behind popular flipbook Myth Match, Good Wives and Warriors, this book contains pages upon pages of cultural folklore from around the world.
Let these weird and wonderful creatures spark your child’s imagination for their own storytelling and drawing while teaching them about international cultures.
Mythopedia will be published on the 14th September 2020.
I will be honest it was the cover that caught my attention first, it was so striking that my eye couldn’t help but be drawn to it and then as soon as I saw that it was a book about mythical beasts I knew I had to read it.
The illustrations in this book are just amazing, so vibrant and beautiful. Sometimes taking up a full page spread so that you can really get a feel for which mythical beast you are reading about and sometimes they are smaller to give a snippet of the story but let the words do the talking.
It is written in a very simple and easy to understand way and is split into sections of the different continents of the world. Some of the beasts have just a page explaining where they originated, what they are said to look like and what they do but others then have another page spread telling a story that goes along with their description, I found these fascinating.
I had heard of a few of the creatures of but there were lots that I hadn’t and it was really interesting to find out about ones from different parts of the world. I think the mythical creatures from Asia were my particular favourite in terms of narrative, although some of my favourite illustrations were in the Europe section.
I quite liked that there were some elements of the tales that I know of outside of these stories. As an example there is a story about a raven who turns itself into a seed which is swallowed by a woman and becomes a baby, this is a concept that we have used in my family, just without the raven and the rest of its story. I don’t know where it came from but it was interesting to see it reflected in one of the tales and to think that a lot of sayings that we have in the present day have probably been passed down as stories or parables since the dawn of time but that we have moved away from its original myth.
This book is a spectacular collection of illustrations and myths and would look marvellous on any bookshelf.