Monster Mash: Mythology, Folktales, and the Supernatural | Series Made Simple Fall 2011

Thanks to the likes of Edward Cullen and Percy Jackson, supernatural creatures and mythology are everywhere in fiction these days. Books for elementary and high school students are full of references to all kinds of monsters, myths, and mysteries. Luckily, mythology and folklore are rich topics with nearly endless areas to explore.

SMS1111_Myth(Original Import)

Preschool-Grade 4

GUNDERSON, Jessica, retel. Jason and the Argonauts. illus. by Nadine Takvorian. ISBN 978-1-4048-6669-0. LC 2011006588. ----. Medusa's Stony Stare. illus. by Rich Pellegrino. ISBN 978-1-4048-6665-2. LC 2011006589. MEISTER, Cari, retel. The Battle of the Olympians and the Titans. illus. by Rich Pellegrino. ISBN 978-1-4048-6667-6. LC 2011006586. ----. Odysseus and the Cyclops. illus. by Nadine Takvorian. ISBN 978-1-4048-6666-9. LC 2011006989. ----. Pandora's Vase. illus. by McLean Kendree. ISBN 978-1-4048-6668-3. LC 2011006986. ----. The Wooden Horse of Troy. illus. by Nick Harris. ISBN 978-1-4048-6670-6. LC 2011006987. ea vol: 32p. (Greek Myths Series). further reading. glossary. Websites. CIP. Picture Window. 2011. PLB $27.99. Gr 2-4-These picture-book retellings are useful for libraries lacking material on Greek myths. The most popular tales of heroes and gods are included, as are stories about the Trojan War. Each book is heavily illustrated, with the text captured in neat boxes. While some of the titles, such as Pandora's Vase, add dialogue or character motivations that make the stories feel stilted or even silly, Odysseus and the Cyclops and Wooden Horse of Troy work particularly well. HIGGINS, Nadia, retel. Issun Boshi (One-Inch Boy): A Japanese Folktale. illus. by JT Morrow. ISBN 978-1-60973-139-7. LC 2011010905. STJOHN, Amanda, retel. Bouki Cuts Wood: A Haitian Folktale. illus. by Cindy Revell. ISBN 978-1-60973-135-9. LC 2011010888. ----. Coyote Rides the Sun: A Native American Folktale. illus. by Durga Yael Bernhard. ISBN 978-1-60973-138-0. LC 2011010892. ----. The Frog King: An African Folktale. illus. by Karen Perrins. ISBN 978-1-60973-137-3. LC 2011010891. ----. Frog Went A-Traveling: A Russian Folktale. illus. by David Wenzel. ISBN 978-1-60973-136-6. LC 2011010890. ----. Medio Pollito: (Half-Chick): A Mexican Folktale. illus. by Sue Todd. ISBN 978-1-60973-141-0. LC 2011010903. ----. The Pied Piper of Hamelin: A German Folktale. illus. by Dianna Bonder. ISBN 978-1-60973-142-7. LC 2011010923. ----. The Story of Jumping Mouse: A Native American Folktale. illus. by Durga Yael Bernhard. ISBN 978-1-60973-140-3. LC 2011010900. ea vol: 24p. (Folktales from Around the World). map. CIP. The Child's World. 2011. PLB $27.07. K-Gr 2-Old-fashioned in the best way, each book tells a story from a particular area. To maintain the traditional feel, the tales are narrated by a storyteller, and the illustrations, which include full-page color images as well as smaller black-and-white pictures, purposefully imitate styles native to the featured regions. A map and an explanatory note describing folktale traditions end each book. Perfect for reading aloud to a class or sharing one-on-one, these books have a nice range and should be considered as needed to fill in folklore collections where these areas are not well represented.

Grades 5 & Up

ALLMAN, Toney. Are Extraterrestrials a Threat to Humankind? ISBN 978-1-60152-170-5. LC 2010046621. KALLEN, Stuart A. The Search for Extraterrestrial Life. ISBN 978-1-60152-171-2. LC 2010052487. MARCOVITZ, Hal. Aliens in Pop Culture. ISBN 978-1-60152-154-5. LC 2010045683. NETZLEY, Patricia D. Alien Encounters. ISBN 978-1-60152-169-9. LC 2010053306. WHITING, Jim. UFOs. illus. ISBN 978-1-60152-172-9. LC 2011007025. ea vol: 80p. (Extraterrestrial Life Series). photos. reprods. further reading. index. notes. Websites. CIP. ReferencePoint. Nov. 2011. PLB $27.95. Gr 7 Up-Students will find plenty of material in this thorough and interesting series. Speculative in nature, each book poses common questions about aliens and attempts to provide answers by drawing information from the fields of entertainment, science, and philosophy. Some dry chapters are loaded with statistics and scientific facts, and others, like those focusing on alien encounters, are downright creepy. These books are text heavy, with only occasional glossy images, and sidebars provide fun facts or insight into specific events or organizations. Extensive back matter makes these books great for report writers and those truly interested in the possibility of alien life. ALTMAN, Linda Jacobs. African Mythology Rocks! 112p. ISBN 978-0-7660-3896-7; ISBN 978-1-59845-328-7. LC 2010053389. BERNARD, Catherine. Celtic Mythology Rocks! 104p. ISBN 978-0-7660-3895-0; ISBN 978-1-59845-326-3. LC 2010053388. COLLIER, Irene Dea. Chinese Mythology Rocks! 128p. ISBN 978-0-7660-3898-1; ISBN 978-1-59845-330-0. LC 2010053391. HOULE, Michelle M. Gods and Goddesses in Greek Mythology Rock! 128p. ISBN 978-0-7660-3897-4; ISBN 978-1-59845-329-4. LC 2010053390. SCHUMAN, Michael A. Maya and Aztec Mythology Rocks! 128p. ISBN 978-0-7660-3899-8; ISBN 978-1-59845-327-0. LC 2010053429. SPIES, Karen Bornemann. Heroes in Greek Mythology Rock! 128p. ISBN 978-0-7660-3900-1; ISBN 978-1-59845-331-7. LC 2010053431. ea vol: illus. by William Sauts Bock. (Mythology Rocks! Series). map. further reading. glossary. index. notes. Websites. CIP. Enslow. 2011. PLB $31.93; pap. $9.95. Gr 6-9-Informative, if a little wordy, this series is excellent for research. Each book covers the mythology of a country, continent, or group of people, with Greek mythology split into two volumes. Seven to 10 stories are featured in every book, all with "Expert Commentary" sections. Although the amount of information might be overwhelming, the short tales make reading more manageable, and the question-and-answer sections will help students focus on meaningful events. BAILEY, Diane. Vampires in Mythology. ISBN 978-1-4488-1227-1; ISBN 978-1-4488-2230-0; ISBN 978-1-4488-2395-6. LC 2010018464. BRINGLE, Jennifer. Vampires in Film and Television. ISBN 978-1-4488-1226-4; ISBN 978-1-4488-2229-4; ISBN 978-1-4488-2394-9. LC 2010018462. COHEN, Robert Z. Transylvania: Birthplace of Vampires. map. ISBN 978-1-4488-1228-8; ISBN 978-1-4488-2231-7; ISBN 978-1-4488-2396-3. LC 2010016106. HEOS, Bridget. Vampires in Literature. ISBN 978-1-4488-1225-7; ISBN 978-1-4488-2228-7; ISBN 978-1-4488-2393-2. LC 2010011077. KAPLAN, Arie. Dracula: The Life of Vlad the Impaler. ISBN 978-1-4488-1229-5; ISBN 978-1-4488-2232-4; ISBN 978-1-4488-2397-0. LC 2010016161. ea vol: 64p. (Vampires Series). photos. reprods. bibliog. chron. further reading. glossary. index. Websites. CIP. Rosen Central. 2011. PLB $30.60; pap. $12.95; ebook $30.60. Gr 5-8-From the history behind the creation of the fictional Count Dracula to contemporary films and books, this series covers all things vampire. These resources, sure to draw enthusiasts, bask in related imagery, decorating chapter headings with dripping blood and sidebars in gravestones. Photographs are scattered throughout the books, which should delight Twilight fans. While none of these titles has enough substance to be useful to report writers, the many interesting facts and theories might inspire students to seek more information. GANERI, Anita & David West. Creatures of Myths and Legends. ISBN 978-1-4488-5198-0; ISBN 978-1-4488-5234-5; ISBN 978-1-4488-5435-6. LC 2011007740. ----. Dinosaurs. ISBN 978-1-4488-5201-7; ISBN 978-1-4488-5240-6; ISBN 978-1-4488-5438-7. LC 2011009829. ----. Gods and Goddesses. ISBN 978-1-4488-5202-4; ISBN 978-1-4488-5242-0; ISBN 978-1-4488-5439-4. LC 2011002913. ----. Heroes of Myths and Legends. ISBN 978-1-4488-5200-0; ISBN 978-1-4488-5238-3; ISBN 978-1-4488-5437-0. LC 2011005530. ----. Outlaws and Villains from History. ISBN 978-1-4488-5199-7; ISBN 978-1-4488-5236-9; ISBN 978-1-4488-5436-3. LC 2011003073. ----. Supernatural Creatures. ISBN 978-1-4488-5197-3; ISBN 978-1-4488-5232-1; ISBN 978-1-4488-5434-9. LC 2011000161. ea vol: illus. by David West. 32p. (Monster Fight Club Series). glossary. index. Websites. CIP. Rosen/PowerKids Pr. 2011. PLB $25.25; pap. $11.75; ebook $25.25. Gr 3-6-Gamers will gravitate to these books, which pair sets of monsters (defined loosely-subjects range from dinosaurs to outlaws) and pit them against each other in a fight. Each showdown includes profiles of the opponents and an action-packed description of their encounter. The format works surprisingly well, utilizing information from history and mythology in the profiles and in the circumstances of the fight. Since these big, visual volumes sit open nicely for kids to read together, they are ideal for browsers. "Make Your Own Fight" pages provide good suggestions for children who want to carry the games further. JEFFREY, Gary. Dragons. illus. by Dheeraj Verma. reprods. ISBN 978-1-4339-6031-4; ISBN 978-1-4339-6032-1; ISBN 978-1-4339-6053-6. LC 2010048671. ----. Giants. illus. by Nick Spender. ISBN 978-1-4339-6034-5; ISBN 978-1-4339-6035-2; ISBN 978-1-4339-6054-3. LC 2010050922. ----. Ogres. illus. by James Field. reprods. ISBN 978-1-4339-6037-6; ISBN 978-1-4339-6039-0; ISBN 978-1-4339-6039-0. LC 2010054377. ----. Sea Monsters. illus. by Terry Riley. reprods. ISBN 978-1-4339-6041-3; ISBN 978-1-4339-6043-7; ISBN 978-1-4339-6042-0. LC 2010052608. ----. Trolls. illus. by James Field. reprods. ISBN 978-1-4339-6045-1; ISBN 978-1-4339-6047-5; ISBN 978-1-4339-6046-8. LC 2011003040. ----. Werewolves. illus. by Gary Jeffrey & Rob Shone. photos. reprods. ISBN 978-1-4339-6049-9; ISBN 978-1-4339-6051-2; ISBN 978-1-4339-6050-5. LC 2011004541. ea vol: 24p. (Graphic Mythical Creatures Series). glossary. index. CIP. Gareth Stevens. 2011. PLB $23.95; pap. $8.15; ebook $23.95. Gr 3-8-These action-packed graphic novels are sure to be hits in most libraries. While each slim book only features one full story involving the creature, an introduction, accompanied by more traditional artwork or photographs, gives more information, and a follow-up page provides examples of tales from other countries or literature. The titles offer a lot of information, and the wide-ranging stories reflect a diverse appreciation for world mythology. Share them with fans of graphic novels or mythical monsters. There are certainly some stand-outs here. Overall, ReferencePoint's "Extraterrestrial Life," PowerKids Press's "Monster Fight Club," and The Child's World's "Folktales from Around the World" are worthy of consideration. "Mythology Rocks!" from Enslow is a solid resource, especially for assignments. All others should be considered to fill specific needs.

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