It’s been a long time since I read a book of traditional fairy stories, but tonight we decided to explore Storytime: First Tales for Sharing. The seven stories in the book have been retold by Stella Blackstone, who stays true to the stories but ditches some of the cliches (there’s no ‘Once Upon a Times’) in favour of more modern way of telling the stories. The girls sat and enjoyed the tales; Emily quickly picked up the refrains and they both joined in. The illustrations, by Anne Wilson, are simple and bright and easily held the girl’s attention. I really appreciated that the ‘humans’ in the story were drawn realistically, there are no unrealistic bodyshapes or over-preened children that are all too common in today’s media. This is a definite keeper and I’m looking forward to many more bedtimes sharing it.