Another month whizzes by and our new super-summery issue of Storytime 24 is out now! It comes with all the stories our readers know and love, but with an extra sprinkling of sunshine – because we all know that we can’t rely on the weather to do that.
For this blog, we thought we’d celebrate Issue 24 and give you a little overview and insight into the stories we selected and their illustrators.
<h3>Inside Storytime Issue 24</h3>
Our latest issue kicks off with Ukrainian illustrator Zhanna Mendel’s quirky and vibrant artwork for our Famous Fable. She gave it a fresh new approach and we gave it a new title: The Crab Walk. Fables were one of the great surprises of Storytime. I didn’t enjoy them much as a child – a bit too preachy. However, reworking them has been a really enjoyable aspect of the magazine.
We love what Zhanna did with the characters in this. All the traditional fables from Aesop and beyond deserve a good old dusting off and some shiny new artwork.
A Feast of Cobwebs was also a great find and I’ve been waiting for the right moment to fit it in – the moment when we needed a wacky Italian cautionary tale about neglecting your housework! Paco Sordo’s artwork is brilliant and the opening picture with a greedy cat and dog makes us smile every time we see it.
The Little Mermaid is this issue’s Favourite Fairy Tale. I find the original story by Hans Christian Andersen a little troublesome as far as role models are concerned, so our version has been adapted. I’ll write more about that another time. That aside, Martuka gave us some stunning illustrations for this and the gorgeous sunshiny colour palette we hoped for, as you can see above.
Still on the summer theme, we included an edited version of Thomas Hood’s In the Summer, illustrated by the brilliant Kate Alizadeh, whose style is refreshingly unique. She has created a succession of the cutest animals ever seen, including monkeys playing violins, a lion in pyjamas and a fox in hollyhocks. A real treat.
We’ve also got our first Hercules adventure (illustrated by Ricardo Fernandez), which sees a brawny Hercules take on the Nemean Lion. There;s great humour in the image on the final spread, when the terrified king crawls into a vase to hide – and it has a very graphic, modern approach for a Greek myth.
Francesco Zito’s artwork for our folk tale, Not-So-Silly Sam, on the other hand, is colourful and more classic in style. Traditional and charming, without being old-fashioned. It’s the perfect fit for the story. The enchanted lemon in this story is bonkers, but we like it that way.
Finally, our Brilliant Book extract, What Katy Did. Why doesn’t this book get more attention? Katy is one of life’s great dreamers, an accidental rebel and a hoot. Susan Coolidge’s treatment of the characters is so entertaining, and her depiction of childhood is pure magic. We have illustrations to match from Marco Guadalupi!
I hope I’ve tempted you to get hold of this issue – or even subscribe. We try to squeeze as much story magic as we can into every issue and, if you like this one, you’ll LOVE our 2nd anniversary issue, which is hot on its heels in September. A world of adventure and imagination lies ahead – for those who are smart enough to join the fun!
Enjoy and more soon!