Book Review – Stone Soup


Retold by: Heather Forest Illustrator : Susan Gaber
Publishers: August House LittleFolk Publishers
ISBN (13): 978-087483-602-8


This retelling of the popular folk tale Stone Soup is set in contemporary times. The story is the same but the villagers are of different races giving all children an opportunity to identify with the central theme of the story. The idea of ‘sharing’ is reiterated through out the story and at the end it highlights how sharing benefits both the giver and receiver. This explicit reiteration makes it a good version for ESL learners.

When two tired and hungry travelers go around asking for food, the villagers all say they have none to share. Deciding that the village without food is needier the travelers announce that they will make stone soup for everyone, if only they had a big black pot! A curious villager brings out a pot for the two travelers. The men boil water and add a stone to it. When they sigh if only they had a carrot to make it tastier and nutritious, a little girl raises her hand saying she just might have a small one. This starts a chain reaction and the villagers find one thing to share, big or small.

Now there is enough delicious soup to feed the entire village. There is a festive feel to the village as they lay the tables out and bring bread, cheese and fruits for a communal meal.

The author’s website has the story (and other folktales) told as an oral story telling experience. Do check it out. Your child will enjoy it.



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