If your young ones are looking for something to read this summer, Decatur’s Little Shop of Stories has a few suggestions.
Bookseller Madison Hatfield recommends titles that will expose young bookworms to the mythology of other cultures. While Greek and Roman mythology stories always seem to get the most coverage, Hatfield there are good books out now that also trace Hindu, Jewish and Japanese folklore.
Here are some recommendations:
Released this past March, Aru Shah and the End of Time by local author Roshani Chokshi pulls from Hindu mythology. Chokshi tells the stories she heard growing up through the eyes of her 12-year-old protagonist, Aru Shah. The tale sets off when the Aru is caught in a little fib with a disastrous consequence – freeing the Sleeper, an ancient demon whose duty it is to awaken the God of Destruction. Aru is then responsible for finding the reincarnations of the five legendary Pandava brothers, protagonists of the Hindu epic poem the Mahabharata, and journey through the Kingdom of Death. Choksi is planning more books for this series, too.
Through kabuki style representation of Japanese mythology, the familiar themes of hero Momotaro take a surprising twist in Momotaro Xander and the Lost Island of Monster. Half-Japanese, half-Irish 12-year-old Xander battles demonic oni, a Japanese ogre, on his quest to find the baku, a dream-stealing anteater, and restore his Momotaro power. Drawing from Japanese folklore, the story includes appearances by Kintaro, the Golden Boy, Fudo-Myoo, the Angry Lord of Light, and the Princess Kaguya. As the journey unfolds Xander realizes that true anger, fear and compassion bring power. The fantasy series continues with book 2, Momotaro Xander and the Dream Thief.
Fantasy, thrilling quests, preteen commotion and Yiddish phrases are all presented through entertaining artwork in Deutsch’s graphic novel series, Hereville. The first book, How Mirka Got Her Sword, invites middle-school readers into Mirka’s quiet Orthodox Jewish community and a glimpse into her sense of adventure. Once the daring 10-year-old accepts a challenge from a witch to defeat a giant troll, the heroine finds her strength and continues onto more adventures in books How Mirka Met a Meteorite and How Mirka Caught a Fish.