David R. Godine 1991
Written and illustrated by Barbara McClintock

Sporting top hats and tails, bonnets and gowns, McClintock's expressive animal characters cavort through this retelling of nine classic Aesop's fables. Taking place on a stage, each tale is acted out by crafty foxes, preening peacocks and kindly cranes with the lively movements of graceful dancers. Charged with a singular energy and imaginative vision, this is one book adults and children alike can read and enjoy.
( Ages 4-8 )

*BCCB Blue Ribbon Book
*ALA Notable Book
*Entertainment Weekly Recommended Books List
*Rattenfanger Literatur Preis
*Made into a ballet/opera by the Minneapolis Children's Theatre

“A quieter but no less impressive beauty than [Chris] Van Allsburg's [work] imbues Barbara McClintock's ANIMAL FABLES FROM AESOP. In only her second illustrated work (the first was the lovely HEARTACHES OF A FRENCH CAT), McClintock proves herself a master. Her delicate line and exquisite watercolors suggest elegant Victorian hand-colored engravings in the grand tradition of J.J. Grandville, Charles Bennett and Randolf Caldecott. While Van Allsburg is calm and cool in his designs, McClintock is always ebullient in hers. Particularly lively is the Fox's desperate but vain attempt to snatch the bunch of grapes. The framing of the nine fables as a skit performed by children (in the manner of Maurice Sendak's KING GRISLY BEARD) seems unnecessary but not distracting; and her retellings are as effortless as her drawings. No parent can go wrong by slipping... ANIMAL FABLES FROM AESOP under the Christmas tree this year.” — Michael Patrick Hearn, The Washington Post

“Nine of the more familiar fables in gracefully phrased, slightly expanded versions that incorporate the morals in their amusing dialogue. McClintock sets the stories on a stage, with jaunty stock characters in Victorian costume; the fashionably dressed crane, the raffish fox, and... others appear in more than one story...the vigorous, delicately delineated figures are vibrant with character; these subtly colored illustrations are a rare blend of drama, comedy, and exquisite detail. Even the outstanding. A delight.” — Starred, Kirkus

“McClintock...devotes space to each tale... several characters appear in more than one tale, gives a sense of the tales as unfolding dramas.” — Publishers Weekly

“McClintock puts a clever spin on nine familiar tales. Framed within... a theatrical setting... a fox, crane, cat, two crows, a lamb, wolf, two mice... dogs and peacocks are introduced. Dressed in proper waistcoats and ball gowns, the animals are a splendid sight. Libraries boasting large collections of Aesop's fables will welcome this innovative addition.” — School Library Journal

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