Anne F. Rockwell
The One-Eyed Giant and Other Monsters from the Greek Myths

Sparked by some of the tales in another book by Rockwell and Adrienne Mayor's main idea in The First Fossil Hunters, I thought this might be a good book to explore with my five year old son. We weren't disappointed. The thought process is this: how do you teach your child the difference between fantasy and reality? Why not ask the question "where might that story have come from?" In sort of a "turn the facts around" version of one of Rudyard Kipling's How the _____ got its ____ Just So stories, we ask how the Greeks may have come up with that monster. Based on Mayor's analysis, I had some suggestions for possible monster origins like the Cyclopes and Centaurs. My son had some great ideas for the other eight monsters discussed in the book. It was a worthwhile and illuminating exercise that helped to take part of the sting out of the fear some children have of the non-existent while still appreciating and valuing the worth of imagination.

Rockwell does an excellent job of making the vocabulary comprehendible for even young children. The pronunciation guide for the frequently difficult-to-correctly-pronounce-on-the-first-attempt Greek words was helpful too. Anne Rockwell is quickly becoming a favorite author/illustrator for my kids. The lessons in this book and her others which focus on tales can be used as wonderful teaching tools for parents.

from the publisher:
Monsters have played an important role in the myths of all cultures. "Everywhere in the world people have imaged monsters, made up stories about them, and tried, in art, to show us what they looked like," Anne Rockwell writes in her Author's Note.

In the timeless tradition of storytelling, she retells ten of the ancient tales from Greek mythology. Her straightforward, simple prose and brilliant illustrations bring to life such famous monsters as Polyphemus, the one-eyed Cyclops; the Gorgon Medusa, with hair made of snakes; and the Minotaur, with a human body and a bull's head.

The fresh retelling and glowing illustrations add up to a gem of a picture book for parents and children to enjoy together.

"With descriptive yet concise language, each one- or two-page retelling of the 10 myths in this collection captures the spirit of the tale....This book complements Rockwell's Robber Baby with the addition of some of the less familiar characters, including the Hydra, the Cyclopedes, the Graiae, Medusa, and the Minotaur. It will be satisfying read-aloud for families as well as a welcome classroom addition."--Library Journal.
Anne Rockwell is the author and artist of more than one hundred books for young readers and listeners. Among her most popular books are The Three Bears and Fifteen Other Stories; The Robber Baby: Stories from the Greek Myths; The Acorn Tree and Other Folktales; Once Upon a Time This Morning (illustrated by Sucie Stevenson); and Long Ago Yesterday. Ms. Rockwell lives in Connecticut on the Shore of Long Island Sound.