The Olive Fairy Book

Andrew Lang
The Olive Fairy Book book

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Introduction by Jane Yolen

Illustrated by Kate Baylay

Frontispiece and 12 colour illustrations and 13 black-and-white drawings.

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The Olive Fairy Book


The universal elements of the fairy tale – intrepid heroes, fair maidens, resolution by subterfuge - shine through in this collection that stretches as far afield as India, Turkey and Sudan. In ‘The Satin Surgeon’, a resourceful princess outwits her wicked sister with an artful disguise. Little Maia’s adventures take her high above the Earth, carried by a swallow, while the Green Knight is saved from death by a soup made from snakes. ‘The Story of Little King Loc’ was adapted by Andrew Lang’s wife from L’Abeille, written by the French poet M. Anatole France.

In creating the Rainbow Fairy Books, Andrew Lang echoed the work of Perrault and the Brothers Grimm. Although he was also a novelist and poet, it is for his large contribution to the world’s stock of fairy tales that he is most remembered. This edition of The Olive Fairy Book is introduced by award-winning children’s author and poet Jane Yolen. With over 300 books to her name, Yolen has been called the Aesop of the 20th century. Here, she describes how the Rainbow Fairy Books were ‘a game-changer in the world of children’s literature’, setting a precedent for later anthologists like herself. Kate Baylay's exotic Art Deco-inspired illustrations are a captivating accompaniment to the stories. A dragon curls around the balustrades of a beautiful palace, the lovely Dorani flies across a starry sky, the Boy who Found Fear at Last frees a sinking ship from a mischievous sea-maiden. The tales are also interspersed with intricate black-and-white drawings by the artist.


Classic stories included in this collection:

Madschun
The Blue Parrot
Geirlaug the King’s Daughter
The Story of Little King Loc
‘A Long-bow Story’
Jackal or Tiger?
The Comb and the Collar
The Thanksgiving of the Wazir
Samba the Coward
Kupti and Imani

The Strange Adventures of Little Maia
Diamond cut Diamond
The Green Knight
The Five Wise Words of the Guru
The Golden-headed Fish
Dorani
The Satin Surgeon
The Billy Goat and the King
The Story of Zoulvisia
Grasp all, Lose all
The Fate of the Turtle

The Snake Prince
The Prince and Princess in the Forest
The Clever Weaver
The Boy who found Fear at last
He Wins who Waits
The Steel Cane
The Punishment of the Fairy Gangana
The Silent Princess

Also available:

The Red Fairy Book The Blue Fairy Book The Green Fairy Book
The Red Fairy Book The Blue Fairy Book The Green Fairy Book
The Yellow Fairy Book The Pink Fairy Book The Lilac Fairy Book
The Yellow Fairy Book The Pink Fairy Book The Lilac Fairy Book
The Brown Fairy Book The Crimson Fairy Book  
The Brown Fairy Book The Crimson Fairy Book  


To read more about the life and work of Andrew Lang click here

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