We’re even more excited than usual this month. The next two issues of Storytime are huge milestones for us. Firstly, Storytime Issue 49, which is out now, marks Storytime magazine’s fourth anniversary. Four years of stories and incredible illustrations! We’re beyond delighted. Also, our 50th issue is hot on its heels, coming in October. As a result, we’re celebrating with an amazing competition for young writers. (More on that here.)
First things first, let’s celebrate reaching our fourth birthday, which is no mean feat for a small, independent publisher.
We decided to mark the occasion with a new story strand. One that would fulfil our readers’ desire to see more of their favourite fairy-tale characters, but would also be fun for young readers. We hope it will help make the transition into the school routine and regular reading a little easier and more enjoyable too.
New in Storytime Issue 49
Our new story series is called Storyland Adventures and is set in a magical, fictional world inhabited by all your favourite heroes, heroines and animals. Think Puss in Boots, the Gingerbread Man, Jack, Cinderella and many more! It opens with a story featuring Goldilocks and the Three Bears. They meet at the opening of Goldilocks’ brand new café, and it’s the first time they’ve seen each other since she sneaked into their house and caused havoc.
We’re extremely fortunate to be working with illustrator Giorgia Broseghini to develop Storyland’s huge cast of characters and she has even created a stunning map of Storyland. You can admire it here and see it in full in our issue too. We hope you like her cover for Storytime Issue 49 and enjoy getting fully immersed in Storyland in coming issues. There’s a lot to look forward to.
As with all Storytime issues, there’s so much more inside our latest magazine. We take a closer look at our other stories and contributors here.
Inside Storytime Issue 49
We kick off with a story from the Dominican Republic called The King and the Moon, which Gary Boller illustrated with great humour. What’s interesting about this tale from the Dominican Republic is that it has never had a king, yet it produced this fantastically funny story about a king who thinks he can have it all. Even the moon.
Cat lovers will appreciate our poem, The Cat of Cats by William Brighty Rands. It’s an ode to night-stalking felines everywhere. Our illustration with a built-in picture puzzle is by all-round cool cat MacKenzie Haley.
For fans of our Myths and Legends section, we have a Greek classic – The Trojan Horse. School teachers, make sure you download and use our Trojan Horse Resource Pack, which is free for all school subscribers. It comes with loads of lesson ideas and themed activities. Find out more at our Schools website. Valeria Abatzoglu provides the awesome illustrations for this myth.
Our Famous Fable is from India, starring Buddha in the guise of Delightful the Bull. There’s a lovely moral about treating others with respect and we’re so pleased with the illustrations by Raitan Ohi.
School dinners can be a huge hurdle for young children, so we commissioned our Tale from Today with this in mind. Hopefully, Mo and the Jumping Jelly by Sara Osman will help readers who are struggling with eating in the school canteen (and their parents too). It is expertly illustrated by Gaby Zermeno, who previously illustrated our Pumpkin Jack poem in Storytime Issue 14. You can pick up this issue from our shop.
We hope Hans Christian Andersen fans will enjoy our version of his fairy tale, The Magic Tinderbox. It features marvellous large-eyed dogs illustrated by Davide Ortu. You might recognise Davide’s illustrations from Storytime Issue 40’s fairy tale about frost fairies. (This is also available from our shop.)
Finally, our Storyteller’s Corner folk tale will give you food for thought. It certainly gives the cheeky but quick-thinking protagonist food in her belly. The Clever Cook was originally collected by the Brothers Grimm and has been revised here for a younger readership. We can’t help admiring the naughty heroine. What do you think? We love the illustrations by Laura Wood.
Furthermore, we’ve crammed in extra activities including drawing, origami, a maze, puzzles and our new book recommendations. You can win copies here.
Over on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, we’re asking our readers some questions about fairy tales to tie in with our new Storyland Adventures strand. We’d love to hear your thoughts on your favourite characters, locations and elements from the world of fairy tales, so let us know.
We hope you enjoy the new story strand and wish you all the best with back to school. Have a great month and check back here for illustrator interviews, free downloads and more in coming weeks!