Archive for the ‘Making Storytime’ Category

Storytime Issue 103 Out Now!

Where will you go?


Where Will You Go?

Going to new and unexpected places is a thrilling experience – and through the magic of stories, you can travel to them without leaving your chair (or your bed, if that’s where you like to read!) Let us invite you to a quick tour of the wonderful places that the latest issue of Storytime will take you.


High Adventure is set high in the Himalayas, near Mount Everest. It features in the Worlds of Wonder strand, which is certainly a fitting description! This tale stars a Sherpa boy named Pasang, who saves a mountain-climber lost in a snow storm. Cacá França’s art makes you feel as if you are going on this journey with him, as it really captures the grandeur and of the highest mountains on Earth.


But that’s not the only high-altitude story this month! The Golden Duck tells the tale about a race to the top of a mountain by a frog and a rabbit – and ends with a duck who was just trying to help, being sprinkled with gold dust. Rossnelly Salazar did the same with the illustrations – sparkling gold dust to the characters, who seem ready to leap off the page!


We travel far to the other side of the globe, to Mexico with this month’s myth! “The Gift of Corn” comes from Aztec legends and takes us from the dark of the underworld to the very top of a magic mountain where foods of all kinds grow, especially their beloved corn. The unique style of Aztec art influenced the vivid pictures created by Daniela Martín Del Campo.


If mountains aren’t your thing, how would you like to visit the depths of the ocean? A spoiled Indian prince goes there in search of magical gems in Where Rubies Come From. Artist Milvilla did a wonderful job of bringing the colourful characters in this fantastic fairy tale to life.


Pinocchio goes on an even more unexpected journey in The Dog-Fish’s Stomach Ache, illustrated by the amazing Felipe Calv. He takes a dive down a giant fish’s gullet – would you like to guess what he found there?


Perhaps you like sunny beaches, tropical forests and exotic creatures though? Then look no further – you can read The Great Flood and it will whisk you away to the Philippines, where a giant crab threatens the their world. Don’t worry, as we learn with this tale that when we work together we can overcome all challenges and the redoubtable Claudia Marianno somehow makes this monstrous creature, a little more affable and colourful in her artwork!


Our folk tale will take you through an enchanted forest. Have you ever wondered about the story behind the nursery-rhyme about a certain shepherdess who lost her all her sheep? Little Bo-Peep is full of magic and enchantment, as you will see when you spot Pete Olczyk’s bewitching illustrations!






Lastly, our cover story will transport us through space and time! Amelia’s Wild Ride opens in one of the greatest shows ever held – the Louisiana Purchase Exposition of 1904 in St Louis! Daisy Ingrosso’s art takes us through this spectacular event, which was attended by a little girl and this experience inspired her to go on to an incredible career as an aviator!


And we hope the stories will do the same to all little readers and explorers out there!


What is the best place that a story has ever taken you? Is it another land, another time, a fictional place, or another planet? We hope you meet you there! Enjoy the journey and let us know your favourite one too!

With love, from the Storytime team

Storytime Issue 102 Out Now!


Meeting Some New Friends

Meeting new people can be exciting – and you will find some new and interesting friends inside the pages of this month’s issue of Storytime. They are so fantastic that we thought we ought to share a special thanks to our fantastic artists, who really brought them to life!


On the cover, you will see Fergus and his new friend, from the story Mayhem in the Museum. He really likes dinosaurs – and makes a friend of his own on a surprising school trip. We won’t spoil what happens, but it is really great fun… Qazaleh Barootian, our guest artist from Iran, did a wonderful job with the illustrations! It will make you feel as if you really were in a fabulous museum!


Next, we have a fairy tale about a boy whose very large footwear gave him an unusual nickname! In Boots and his Brothers, the young Boots is a curious and good-natured boy and he can teach his older brothers a thing or two! The things Boots finds on his way will become his friends too! There’s plenty of magic and adventure in the story and part of that magic is provided by Chiara Carapallese, with her bright and lively art!


earthquake fishHow about a trip all the way to Japan? Which creatures would you meet there? The Earthquake Fish stars two leading characters who are famous in Japanese mythology – a hot-tempered thunder god and a giant catfish who makes the world tremble by wriggling his tail. Wiliam Luong used historical Japanese prints as inspiration for these unforgettable illustrations, while giving them his own unique twist. You’ll love them!



Twelve Dancy Princesses

Gubbon Seer is a very clever chap that is good company… even if he does like to play tricks on people! Mariane Cândido illustrated this folk tale about what happened when a greedy king gets Gubbon Seer to build an extraordinary castle and then plans to swindle him! Let’s just say, there are plenty of riddles and plot twists in this one!


Friends can be in our family too – and when twelve sisters move house, they know they can count on each other! The Twelve Dancing Princesses are lucky when they move out of their palace and into a dance studio in The Princesses Move In. They all team up and help each other to face the mess! Check out their cool new cleaning-dance moves in the images by the talented Francesca Romana Braccioti!



When you’re visiting a new place, you want a cool fellow who knows their way around! That describes the Native American heroine of Sacagawea Leads the Way, this month’s real-life story. Sacagawea guided the Lewis and Clark expedition that crossed the American continent, and helped them to get along with the peoples they encountered. Fran Matsumoto takes us along with her, via her beautiful and vivid artwork!


The Magic Garden is a story from Kazakhstan that is about a wise boy who wants to build a garden where people who need it can find peace and plenty. He’s the kind of person we all would like to know – honest and caring, and willing to get things done! Öykü Akarca’s work show his creation in all its wonder…


measure of rice

After all the nice mates we met above, here comes a little plot twist of our own! Sometimes we meet people who can be a bit silly! The Measure of Rice features a foolish man who doesn’t want to do any work but gets a big job. A greedy emperor gives him a very important responsibility and chaos ensues! No one wants to be his mate but he’s bound to make you laugh! Cristina di Pietro illustrated the adventure of the one guy you wouldn’t want to be friends with in this issue!



Which of the characters in this issue would you want to meet? Make sure you have plenty of adventures and magic lined up with your new friends – be it imaginary ones, and real ones too! And one thing is for sure, as the year is just starting we promise you that many more fabulous friends big and small will feature here soon! Happy story time, y’all!


Storytime Issue 101 Out Now!


New Year’s Resolutions

A new year brings new possibilities! At this time, we think about things we want to do, places we want to visit, or ways we want to change our habits. In fact, you might find inspiration in this month’s issue – it’s full of characters that are facing new challenges or looking for new adventures!


‘Where the Frost Comes From’ is a wonderful Aboriginal myth that stars… well, stars! Seven sisters called the Meamei get bored of their life in the heavens and decide to come down to Earth. They have many new experiences – and new dangers! Elena Iarussi did a fantastic job of bringing the legend of the seven sisters to life through her art.


Our cover story, ‘The Firefox’, is inspired by a Finnish myth and it features a little Finnish boy called Onni. His grandfather takes him out for his first midwinter skiing trip in the woods, where he sees a mythical creature – and the beauty of the Northern Lights! Esther Diana’s gorgeous art sparkles with shimmering colours.


This issue also features a magical modern-day story by the talented author Emmy Clarke. ‘Floorboard Fairies’ is about a girl named Kate, who holds a sleepover for her friends and shares a secret with them. But when they doubt her stories about magical beings under the floorboards, she decides to go in search of a mythical creature and show them they exist. We won’t tell you what this creature is… but Sara Torretta’s pictures are truly fantastic!


If you want to change the world, then get inspired by the brilliant Eunice! ‘Young, Gifted and Black’ is an inspirational real-life story about a girl who has an incredible gift for music and is determined to use her talent to change the world too. Artist Kalakal tells the tale of a young Nina Simone through his vibrant and unique art – this is a story that you won’t forget.


Not all characters in this issue go out looking for adventure – but just like in real life, sometimes we have challenges forced upon us. If this new year will bring unexpected events, we can face them bravely, just like the heroes of these stories!


‘Tootles Gets Lost’ is about one of Peter Pan’s Lost Boys. Appropriately enough, he gets lost in the forest at night… but don’t worry, he finds warmth and shelter in an unexpected place! Illustrator Katherine Frota transforms this minor character into a star in this comforting bedtime story.


If you are hungry for more stories, then we have a very funny one for you! The main character in ‘A Hungry Cat’ is looking for more things to eat! But this famished feline certainly has an adventurous appetite. Wait until you see what he gobbles! This is a hilarious folk tale, and the artist Thaís Mesquita had loads of fun creating images for it.


In this month’s fairy tale we also learn that the true beauty is inside out! So what would your magic mirror say, if you asked? ‘Snowdrop’ is about a princess, seven dwarves and a magic mirror – but it has a twisting end and a reminder that you don’t need a prince to tell you how truly beautiful you are! The art of Weronika Bartczak is truly the most wonderful thing you might see in a while, and it adds some extra magic to this tale.


The New Year is also a time for resolutions, where we promise to improve and become the best version of ourselves. But the fable of ‘The Boastful Bird’ is about a crow that is overly confident in his abilities and tries to be like an eagle. Helena Yastremska captured the comedy of the tale with her bright art! This story has a gentle message: it’s good to have aspirations – but also to be true to your own nature.


What are your wishes for the New year? What would you like to try perhaps that you have never done before? We hope the tales in this issue will inspire you to live this year in full – we cannot wait to hear about all your adventures and the stories you have to share! In the meantime, we will get ourselves busy preparing many more stories to inspire you next month again! Happy New Year of Stories!

Storytime Issue 100 Out Now!

Hurrah for a hundredth!


We believe that our lives are defined by stories – and we’d like to tell you a very special one. Once upon a time, we dreamed about a magazine that had no adverts and no plastic in it, just great stories to read, love and share. We hoped it would encourage kids like you to read for fun and discover the magic of stories. With these 100 magical issues, we have done just that.

Our 100th issue is out now, and it is JAM-PACKED with wonderful stories of magic and adventure!

It only feels like yesterday that we were publishing Storytime issue 1 and introducing readers to the tales of Goldilocks, Aladdin and the Hare and the Tortoise!

‘Reading for fun’ has been our motto from day one… and here we are, eight years and ONE HUNDRED ISSUES later (we have to say it out loud because if feels unreal!), crafting Storytime issues with the same passion we had when we started!

There were many challenges and changes along the way – but we have remained true to our mission of changing the world, one story at a time! We are proud of sharing wonderful tales from cultures around the globe and featuring a fantastic and diverse array of characters. In every issue, you will find characters you identify with and get lost in their stories. Through stories, we learn that we are all uniquely wonderful and that the world is a beautiful place!

We have had many positive experiences when creating Storytime – so many it’s hard to count. There were certainly more than 100!

We are proud to have worked with more than 500 amazing illustrators and authors so far to create fresh and colourful tales. Of course we also have to thank to have printers that bring colour to our world, the mailing team that makes sure each edition flies through your door every month and our whole team that never stops dreaming up new and thrilling tales and making real all the magic that goes on behind the scene . Still, every time we see a new cover and a new story being shared, it feels like the first issue ever!

But what we are most grateful for are OUR READERS! Without you, none of this would be possible. You are the reason we make this magazine – and you are our inspiration! Every child whose eyes have sparkled while reading a story, every reluctant reader that discovered the magic of a good tale, everyone who learned new words and got inspired to write, travel or dream …! It is because of you that we have reached 100 issues, and it is a special moment for us too. It means that there will be thousands and thousands of readers out there that we helped to inspire. And that, my friends, is what Storytime is all about!

Our 100th issue was created with the same love, excitement and wonder that we had when the first issue was created! Though now, Storytime is flying out to many more countries (over 60!) and landing in China, Singapore, Australia and India, among others…. Thanks to our new friends and partners in those countries, our 100th issue is being read in many languages by kids who love stories just as much as you all do!

Storytime Issue 100 – Hurrah for a hundredth!

Now, we take great pleasure in introducing the stories that feature in our very special 100th issue!

Our cover story, Santa’s Little Helper is about a curious owl called Oona, who finds her way into Santa’s factory and causing mayhem. But who can resist the cutest snow owl? Mrs Claus certainly can’t…. and she finds a special way for Oona to bring joy to kids all over the world at Christmas. If you spot Santa flying by with an owl perched on his sleigh… it might be Oona hitching a ride! Artist Gülsah Alçin Özek did a wonderful job of bringing the little owl and Santa’s elves to life in this festive tale.

But who will pull Santa’s sleigh if Rudolph and his reindeer friends get ill? That worrying question is answered in The Replacement Reindeer, which features magical illustrations by Agnieszka Maszota. Santa’s friends from all seasons come to the rescue in this unique and hilarious holiday adventure!

In Italy, when kids look at the sky on Christmas Eve, they’re hoping to spot a broom, not a sleigh. Meet La Befana, also known as the Christmas Witch! Will she leave coal or candy in the stocking of a little boy named Giorgio? You’ll have to read the story to find out! And be
sure to check out the funny art by the talented Federica Tanania.

Nothing gets us into the Christmas spirit like the joyful sound of bells ringing in the night. But what would happen if they suddenly stopped making their music? When the Bells Ring is about two brothers whose kindness brings the sound of the bells back to their city over Christmas, and Elisabeth Clover adds to the magic with her gorgeous illustrations.

Legend of the Evergreen Trees

This month’s fable has a message of kindness and caring, which is very appropriate for his time of year! Legend of the Evergreen Trees tells us how a juniper tree and a spruce give shelter to an injured bird and are given a special reward for showing us all how good it is to be kind. The art by Mirti did an amazing job of turning these trees into lively characters!

If you aren’t feeling the Christmas Spirit just yet, you might want to read A Christmas Dream, which is a retelling of a classic story by Louisa May Alcott. Little Effie is bored with Christmas, until she has a dream that teaches her that sharing is what this season is all about. If you feel this in your heart, there are many things you can do to make this season truly special to someone in need! Of course, we are grateful that the marvellous Lisa Vannini shared her talents with us on this story – you must check out her art!

Aguio and Bulanawan’

By now, you must be wondering if all our stories are about the holiday season! Well, this month’s legend certainly isn’t concerned with Christmas – but Aguio and Bulanawan does have a lovely message about peace, brotherly love, and the importance of letting go of anger and reuniting with our loved ones. That is certainly a message we can really relate to the whole year around! The illustrations by Eidvile Viktorija Buozyte complement the story perfectly, as they are full of colour and action.



And lastly, our real-life story is about an inspiring boy who always tried to do the right thing. ‘Moniya Tells the Truth’ is about the childhood of Mahatma Gandhi, who became famous for helping India to gain independence by peaceful means. May it be an inspiration to us now in the New Year and beyond! The artwork of Cimi Pham really brings this lovely story and the Indian colours to life!


This blog is quite a bit longer than usual because we had so much we wanted to share with you. This Christmas, we are thankful for all you wonderful readers, who have made Storytime a success. We hope you will find 100 reasons to love this issue – and look forward to the next one already, in 2023!

A very merry Christmas to one and all from the Storytime team!

Storytime Issue 99 Out Now!

Storytime - issue 99 - Take a Second Look


Appearances can be deceptive – both in the real world and in this month’s stories! If our latest issue teaches us anything, it’s that you can’t always judge things by first impressions… and that’s part of the fun of reading a good story, isn’t it? There’s nothing quite as thrilling as something unexpected. If you are willing to join us in a quest for adventures, from the Scottish moors to galaxies far, far away and even to Ancient Greece, please fasten your seatbelts and read on!


Storytime Issue 99 – Take a Second Look!


We take off with a classic fairy tale, a Scottish one called The Elfin Knight. It’s about a curious and brave girl named Janet who is determined to meet the mysterious warrior of the title. She must deal with shape-changing fairy magic – and the story takes an unexpected turn that we won’t spoil here! What we can tell you is that Spring Nguyen casts an enchantment of her own with artwork, and it sparkles out of the pages into the real world.


Stephen Hawking

We shall also always be kind and be wary of judging by appearances in the real world, too! The true-life tale this month is about a boy called Stephen who didn’t like doing homework but liked taking things apart. Some of his schoolfriends thought he would never amount to anything, but you will be amazed by what he achieved.


This story has a lesson that we can learn forever – let’s never judge the ones around you too quickly, because there is always a lot of promise in each one of us! Marie-Pierre Oddoux’s beautiful and characterful illustrations for Working Out the World help us to see reality from Stephen’s point of view.


As you might have noticed, we in the Storytime team are big fans of a good board game. Everything can change with the roll of a dice! That’s literally what happens in The Quest for Home!, illustrated by the incredibly talented Bi Aguiar. Joe and Dylan try out an old game when the WiFi goes out – only to find themselves transported into the game world by enchantment. They must take on unexpected roles, and you will never guess who ends up becoming the Mighty Knight.


Hansel and Gretel

We take playing games very seriously and in this issue we also have a playtime’s favourite: Savoury Dreams is about hide and seek, where the whole idea is to appear that you are not there! Hansel and Gretel are masters in the art of hiding but perhaps Hansel’s appetite will spoil the game for him! Margherita Grasso’s highly detailed images light up this fun little tale with a foodie twist.


The Lion with Red Eyes is a Somali story about a cub who is kicked out of his home because he is judged by the way he looks. Not many lions have eyes that glow like flames in the dark… But did he deserve it? You will get to decide in this thrilling tale, featuring the striking illustrations of Dominque Ramsey.



A farmer’s wagon is stuck in a ditch – and then the strongest hero in the world comes wandering down the road. What do you think will happen? Let’s just say that the lazy farmer learns an unexpected lesson in the fable of Hercules and the Waggoner. The only thing we know for sure is that the art of Chiara Vestrucci is incredibly lively and fun!


You will need big lungs to read this story out loud! The Boy with the Long Name, stars a lad called (take a deep breath!) Tala Bini Bendo Toko Miki Sembu Chima Chimena Kit Kit Kuki Mizi Pizi Hala. He is very proud of his name because it is very long and impressive – but as this funny tale makes clear, having a long name has some unexpected down sides. Reading this story out loud could be a really fun challenge! Sahitya Rani really enjoyed coming up with the colourful and cartoonish art, and we love the results of her classic techniques!


Old Qanah

Finally, a heart-warming tale of a blanket that is a lot more than it looks like. The old blanket-weaver spent all of his time weaving or gathering dyes and materials for his creations, but nobody realised he was creating the most beautiful gift of all! Be enchanted by this Native American legend, Old Qanah’s Gift. Chau Phan faced the challenge of creating illustrations that would live up to the gorgeousness of Qanah’s creation, and did a phenomenal job!


We hope you found joy, surprise and enchantment in every story in this issue, and perhaps in the end we have all changed a little bit as well through the stories we read and share. When you go out into the world, try to look beyond your first impressions and appearances. You never know what wonders you might discover! Happy stories, and happy discoveries folks!


Happy reading,

The Storytime team

Storytime Issue 98 Out Now!


Summer is over and Autumn is on the way. Longer evenings mean… more hours in which to read Storytime in bed! Ever wondered what characters and creatures are up to at night? Read on and you will find out! Our October issue is full of magic goings-on and funny stories that happen on these long Autumn nights… while we are all asleep! We have a story for every occasion, and one or two might even be true! Join us to uncover what makes issue 98 super-special!


Storytime Issue 98 – Night time is story time!


You know it will be fun when there’s a super hero teddy leading the way! In Night Bear Strikes Again!, the furry champion and his sidekick Night Cub go into action to save Dream City and show how much fun night-time adventures can be! But was it real or just a dream? One thing is for certain: Raitan Ohi’s awesome illustrations will leave you wishing you were there, too!


What else comes out at night? Bats – and bats can be good friends! They keep princess Leutogi company when she feels homesick – and as we know, real friends are there for you when you need them most. The Bat Goddess is a gorgeous myth from the Pacific Islands, brought to life by Bea Tormo’s pencils!


The Midnight Cake Thief is about what happens when a hare gets invited to a feast and plays playing a prank on his friend, the baboon! Follow the crumbs and laugh with the funny animals in this tale! Mikhail Dunakovskiy’s lovely art adds lots of humour to this African animal fable!


In times of conflict, people look for inspiring leaders – and The Unexpected Heroine is about a real person whose bravery and leadership made a difference when her country was invaded. Young Joan faces her fears to fight for what she believes in – and Adam Pękalski brings the Middle Ages to life through his gorgeous and detailed work!


The creatures of land and sky also go to war in The Willow-Wren and the Bear – all because a bear insulted the willow-wren’s chicks! Rodolfo de Melo did a brilliant job of playing with proportion to depict creatures great and small together, and his illustrations make it an endearing tale for all ages!


Ever wondered what cats get up to when they go out wondering? So do we! The Cat’s Elopement follows two furry felines as they venture into the city and have unexpected adventures. We love all the details and the characters in Monika Suska’s fun art, too!


Put on your magic hat and join a brave hero on a quest in the fairy tale of Leander and the Red Cap. If you are a good and kind reader, you might even be allowed to visit the Kingdom of Delight! We are happy to know that kindness and friendship always save the day – and Martina Naldi’s bold illustrations make sure we won’t forget this lesson either!


And lastly, we have our special bedtime story… about bedtime! The problem is, it’s hard to get a good night’s sleep when you are a giant in a land of little people. That’s the problem facing shipwrecked sailor Lemuel in Bedtime for Gulliver. Jacqueline Nicolau had great fun creating the illustrations for this story – and it really shows!


We hope you aren’t feeling sad that summer is almost over, because there is much fun to be had in Autumn… and this issue will get you in the mood for Halloween! It is full of treats, after all. Start getting cosy and get ready for the most wonderful adventures – out now!


Happy reading,

The Storytime team

Storytime Issue 97 Out Now!


They say that when we turn eight, you become a ‘big kid’. Oh well… we are now eight, and we feel that we have grown a lot alongside our readers! Storytime has built an amazing library of stories, we have created a wealth of extra activities every month, we have created digital issues and we have made every story available in audio form for bedtime and reading along!


Our dream of becoming the place you could go to for the best stories, in any format you like, is now real! And guess what? We couldn’t be prouder to create a magazine that is loved by so many children all over the world. To know that kids in over sixty countries are reading and cherishing out stories in a dream coming true… a dream that started in September 2014!


Storytime Issue 97 – Happy Birthday to Us!


So what are we doing to celebrate our eighth birthday? We are bringing eight fantastic new stories to the party! We made sure that many fabulous creatures were invited. The host will be Queen Koko, the most fabulous gorilla you will ever meet! She really did exist, and she was super clever too. She learned to communicate using sign language and loved kittens (like we do too)! If that’s not enough to melt your heart, Josh Cleland will make sure you fall in love with his illustrations!


What party would be complete without a dragon story? Moe Ali makes The Dragon of the North take over our centre spread and this epic scene shall make everyone curious to read our fairy tale! Will the magic ring of King Salomon hold as much power as it promises? And will you be able to spot all the treasures in this story?


You know we have loved animal tales from the start and have featured hundreds of them – because animals make us laugh and teach us valuable lessons, too! The Fox and the Leopard is about two beasts who get into a debate about who looks the most fabulous – but in the end it’s the wise tortoise who teaches us that we are all beautiful in our own way. And we hope you know that you are beautiful too – just the way you are! Tomislav Zlatic had fun with these fab line-up of forest creatures.


If you need cuddles and a little mystery, then The Goblin in the Garden might interest you! The brand new Worlds of Wonder section will take you to magical places where the most wonderful adventures can happen! This one is set in an old garden – which shows that enchanting things can happen even in the most ordinary places. Lauren Emmon makes it extra-special with her soft shades and beautiful compositions.


But since we are talking about wonders… we are also bringing one of the Seven Wonders of the World into this special issue! (We think Storytime should be the eighth wonder, of course – did we mention we are eight and wonderful too? Yay!) The Hanging Gardens of Babylon were famous for their beauty in ancient times, and Sara Michieli helps us to imagine what they would have been like. If you would like to learn more, our Teaching Resource pack this month is all about wonders – old and new!


Our bedtime story is about a classic English hero and making friends… because we would like to remind our readers that the best things in life are the ones we share! Share a picnic, share a skill, share a story! Do it together and create life-long memories. Robin’s Picnic is all about sharing – and it’s made even more vibrant by the illustrations, provided by the talented Lauren May!


It’s back-to-school time too, so we thought you would have fun reading about How the Alphabet Was Made! Rudyard Kipling had a great take on that, so we brought his wonderful tale to the party, along with superb illustrations of Estrella Bascunan. We hope you will giggle along Taffy’s ideas and spellings – and don’t forget to make your own words in the Playbox! There are many alphabets and stories about how they were invented, but this is certainly one of our favourites!


Our eighth story in this issue is a Chinese folk tale about a very clever girl who becomes The Young Head of the Family. She solves problems and riddles and has brilliant ideas and we hope you will agree that Carol Rempto’s art is equally brilliant. When have you seen a girl arriving riding a buffalo before? That has got to be a first!


To wrap this celebratory issue in style we are happy to present – drum roll – our latest competition: Create a Comic! It’s open to all readers aged 4- 9, and we are inviting you all to create a comic strip starring your favourite animal! It can be funny, cute, sci-fi or zany, but it should be totally original! We have created an awesome accompanying pack of resources for this competition which you can download here – and you can use it for help and inspiration! The winner will be published in Storytime next year – and it will be our first-ever comic strip in the magazine! How exciting is that?


We will be eating cake and blowing candles all month long, and we are wishing that your month too is sprinkled with sugar and decorated with rainbow icing! Thank you for being such awesome readers and for loving our stories! Here is to many more years and tales to come!


With love from all of us at Storytime Towers!

Storytime Issue 96 Out Now!


We are getting into party mode here, preparing to our Anniversary Issue in September and looking at all things we should celebrate. It just so happens that this month’s issue of Storytime is full of reminders about things we should treasure…at all times!


Storytime Issue 96 – Reasons to Celebrate


First, there is the joy of music. Our cover story, The Marvellous Musicians is a fun fairy tale about three animals who are enchanted by the tunes a wandering minstrel plays. It’s an old tale from the Brothers Grimm, but we decided to give it a Storytime twist – but we won’t spoil the new ending! Caro Vázquez makes the animals stars extra-cute, and his art really conveys the joy that music brings – especially on the issue’s festival-themed cover art. So if you need a pick-me-up, why not put some music on and boogie down?


Another kind of performance captivates a young boy in Will’s Play Time. When a troupe of strolling players visit Stratford-upon Avon, his dad takes him to a show, and it inspires him to come up with plays with his friends. Of course, you might have guessed this story is about young William Shakespeare! It was challenging to write because very little is known for certain about his early years – but we used the information we do have as a basis for an imaginative tale about how he might have seen his first play. The artist LaPiz really brought the Elizabethan times to life with her colourful and expertly researched illustrations. In this age of streaming, it can be easy to forget how exciting a live performance can be. If you have the chance, why not go to a play at your local theatre?


With summer vibes in the air and holidays still on, we can also enjoy parties and ditch the bedtime curfew! The wonderful Indonesian tale of The Crocodile’s Gift is about a girl who wants to go to a prince’s big celebration. Her wicked stepmother and stepsister take her best sari – but she is given a golden one and special sandals to wear by a benevolent and enchanted crocodile! It’s a Cinderella of sorts, but all the action happens in the gorgeous Maluku Islands, and the twist is all down to a bask of crocodiles – and the gorgeous art by Navya Raju.


If you aren’t in the mood for a concert, a play or a party, then you can always enjoy a good book! That’s what little Yaya is looking for in The Mystery in the Library – but she finds something much stranger instead… This story is by Fleur Doornberg-Puglisi, and her love for books and libraries certainly shines through! It is perfectly complemented by the art of Marcos de Mello, who populates the setting with vibrant characters. Have you picked your summer reads already? We hope we are in it!


When it comes to small pleasures to celebrate, you can’t forget about food! The treats that are comforting in winter are less appealing in the hot summer months, though… That’s the problem faced by Melody, the possessor of a magical porridge pot and the main character in A Summer Treat. However, this time she comes up with a new recipe that is healthy, delicious and cooling – a kind of Bircher muesli that’s really yummy! The art by Giorgia Broseghini – predictably, looks good enough to eat.


Continuing the theme of food, this issue also includes the fish-flavoured tale of The Heron’s Breakfast. Lorena Bayona’s fun and funny artwork takes this story of a bird outwitted by a minnow to a whole new level! It’s a reminder for us not to be too picky and enjoy the servings that come our way…


What would be of summer without the company of good friends? Friends should definitely be cherished – but this is a lesson that an untrustworthy fish learns in the Nigerian fable of Why the Fish Lives in the Sea. Ani Manzanas provided the lovely animal art – and she somehow makes it seem totally natural for a fish to be walking around on land!


And finally, we have the inspirational story of The Mighty Viking, with suitably epic illustrations by the very talented Gabi Tozati. Hervor is a little girl determined to follow in her father’s footsteps, and will not let sea serpents or her embroidery lessons get in her way. Perhaps that’s the most important thing that we need to remember and celebrate – the fact that we can make choices and follow our dreams!


We hope these stories will fill your summer with joy and you feel like sharing stories with your loved one! We can’t wait to share great news next month when we will have even more to celebrate!


Keep cool and keep reading, folks!


The Storytime team

Storytime Issue 95 Out Now!


Here at Storytime, we believe that stories should be about fun, first and foremost! Reading for fun if the first step to falling in love with the habit of reading and sticking to it for life!

But for a story to connect with readers, it has to be about something that matters. Even if it wasn’t created as a moral story to teach us a lesson, a good tale should make us think about the world in a new way and give us new insights. With that in mind, we would like to tell you about the stories that will be featured in our latest issue. And since it’s summer, we travelled far and away – watch out for all the marvellous places we have gone to!


Storytime Issue 95 – A Different Point of View


Our cover story comes all the way from New Zealand! The Sea King is about what happens when some land-dwelling humans insult the monarch of the deeps, and he sends his fish armies to teach them a lesson! Though it is very much a fantasy tale, it is also about how arguments can escalate – which is especially relevant today! Who would you agree with? Thing about how our differences can be solved while spotting all the colourful sea life in this story! Giulia di Cara is the artist responsible for the illustrations and the magnificent cover art, and we are sure you will agree he adds a touch of wonder to proceedings.


This month’s fairy tale is The Little Singing Frog, which tells a version of a classic tale with a very special twist. Even the sun plays a part in it! We really don’t want to spoil it, but you will never read that certain classic story the same way again! Rita Ribeiro Lopes has obviously sprinkled some of her fairy dust on the lovely art, too.


You might not know this, but the Storytime team are big fans of science fiction. We take you out of this world with The Moon Pirates, which was inspired by the question of how our gadgets might feel if we threw them away! The dynamic duo of Mado Peña and Ernest Sala did an absolutely fantastic job designing cute little A-HAB and his robotic shipmates, and we hope you enjoy this tale from a robot’s point of view!


But what would the world look like for a tiny plant in a field? That’s the idea behind The Wild Weed! After its taller and more glamorous friends are plucked by young kids, the weed makes some new friends and finds a purpose in life. This fable was illustrated by the very talented Giulia Quagli, who has a great feel for nature! And on this note, do not forget to download the Spotter’s Guide in this issue and go outside to spot some blooms this summer!


The Forest Guardian whisks us across the world to the Amazon rainforest, which is protected by a mysterious (and mischievous!) creature called the Curupira! The story is told from the point of view of an Amazonian native Indian whose forests are threatened by mining companies. Again, this is a magical tale – but it touches on important issues at a time when rainforests are getting cut down and jungle tribes are being forced out of their ancestral lands. Carlitos Pinheiro knows the Amazon well, and he really brings it to life in his colourful and vibrant illustrations!


Stories can help us to travel through time as well! The Kind Doctress takes place in the early 19th century and tells the true story of Mary Seacole who grew up in Jamaica in the early 19th century and grew up to become a famous nurse. We’re big fans of historical stories, as they give us a chance to explore another era through the eyes of its inhabitants. Sabrina Filieri did lots of research to create art that is both historically accurate and wonderful to look at!


Dusk and Dawn is a fantastic story about two servants of the Old Man in the Sky, who can only meet at Midsummer. Kate Malohatko‘s lush, colourful art adds another layer of enchantment to a story about loving someone and being separated from them – which is something we can all identify with.


And lastly, you will never look at bathtime the same way after reading The Tin Soldier’s Underwater Adventure! It stars the toy soldier and the ballerina from Hans Christian Andersen’s beloved story. The phenomenal Giorgia Broseghini illustrated the tale of what happens when they are scooped up and dumped into hot and soapy water as they experience bath night for the first time! Oh how much fun it can be!


Which of these places would you like to explore? We hope they will inspire you to love the oceans, protect the forests and remember to look up to the beautiful skies every night and spot the brightest star. It’s a wonderful world we live in and there are plenty of stories to share with you about it!


Enjoy a Summer of stories, peeps!


The Storytime team

Storytime Issue 94 Out Now!


You know what is really special about stories? They allow us to meet a variety of fascinating characters that are different from us! We get to spend time with them, and can learn from them as well. Let’s meet the fascinating friends you will make in the latest issue of Storytime!


Storytime Issue 94 – Meet New, Interesting Friends!


The title character from the story of The Clever Frog in this month’s issue is a very smart and charming chap named Giuseppe. He likes to read and learn things, and he knows many interesting facts. The problem is, he is very proud of being clever – and this stops him from asking for help when needed! Perhaps you don’t have green skin or webbed toes… but can you think of a time when you were like Giuseppe and were too proud (or shy!) to get assistance from others? Anastasiia Bielik did a wonderful job bringing this funny character to life with her illustrations!


You might have a pet for a friend – but we can guarantee that it is nothing like Bastet! The Egyptian cat-goddess has powers that protect her land – and she also has a fierce temper. In Bastet Goes Missing, you will learn about this cool character and other gods from Egyptian mythology. The art by Forrest Burdett really adds to the comedy of this fun story.


Feeling out of place in a new situation is something that we can all relate to – and sometimes we just want a friend who accepts us for who we are! The Thing in the Woods is about a boy named Elliott, who is packed away to summer camp. He doesn’t know anyone and wants some peace and quiet… so he slips away and ends up meeting a mysterious new friend! Nocturnis is a cuddly purple creature who shares stories about the magical land he comes from, and we get to share Elliott’s wonderful experience through this tale. Ekaterina Savic did the lush art for the tale – and even came up with the cool design for the creature, which graces the issue’s cover.


Not everybody can be a champion at a sport, but we can all be inspired by the determination of Billie Jean King, who you will meet in this month’s real-life tale. The Ace tells us about how she discovered her passion for tennis and never gave up on her dream of becoming a champion. (Think of something that you are passionate about – and imagine what you could accomplish if you worked as hard as Billie Jean did!) Irene Saluzzi illustrated this story, and used photos of the real people featured in it as reference. She did a fantastic job of capturing their likenesses in her own beautiful style – and she’s certainly a champion to us, too!


The Ugly Duckling is one of the best-known characters from the classic stories of Hans Christian Andersen, and in this month’s bedtime story you will get to hang out with him after he became a swan. It turns out that he is still a bit lonely – but he finds some new and unlikely friends in The Swan’s Nest, illustrated by the amazing Giorgia Broseghini.


What would it be like to never be scared of anything? If you want to find out, you could ask The Girl Who Knew No Fear. The title character is a cool girl who sets off to find out what ‘fear’ actually is, and has fabulous adventures along the way. Go along with her by reading this tale – and be sure to check out the lovely artwork courtesy of Fanny Liem.


Some people are always positive, and their good mood can be infectious! So why not spend some time with Lucky Hans, who looks on the bright side of life – even when things go wrong? He shows us how gratitude and positivity can help us get through the darkest times! We’re grateful that Roger Simó agreed to create the art for this tale, as he did a fantastic job of capturing the hero’s happy-go-lucky attitude!


And lastly, we have The Sun’s Tale, featuring illustrations by the very talented Giovanni Abeille. It is a story literally told by the Sun as she tells the Wind and the rain about the things she has seen and done as she soars through the sky. By reading this story, it’s almost as if the Sun is telling you the tale herself – and it’s filled with magic and wonder.


We hope you will enjoy hanging around with all the wonderful characters in our latest issue this month. May this summer be the biggest adventure of all!


Happy story time everyone!


The Storytime team