For something completely different the timeless fairytale with more diverse heroes and heroines. I'm beginning to wonder how solid a fairytale foundation we give our children in our increasingly non children friendly schools sometimes. This then means that tales like the Jolly Postman are missed in all their glory unless you know those traditional tales really well. Then there's the clear story conventions and fantastic modelling from fairy tales for our writers right up into Year 6. So with that in mind what about the classic set 'The Kingdom under the Sea', 'Past 8 o'clock' + 'A Necklace of Raindrops' by Joan Aitken' for a steadfast set of fairytales for every occasion.
Finally in this 'Fairytale 3' is the new 'Blackberry Blue+other fairytales' by Jamila Gavin. In her intro Jamila explains that she 'wanted to create stories which extended the Europoean image, so that more diverse children could look at the heroes and heroines and say, "That could be me." ' She has done that in this collection with gorgeous subtle, mystical illustrations by Richard Collingridge. I've read the first one which was about the title heroine-blackberry Blue-and seemed appropriate for the time of year. I'm going to stop writing and go and read some more. You need a copy so try and get your hands on one. Can't really say more than the Independent on Sunday who call it 'MAGIC' which is surely enough of a recommendation to curl up with this book.