Welcome to Pied Piper Press ~ serving schools, teachers, homeschoolers, parents and children.
Wonderful books for your child and classroom.
Browse the titles on the tabs above and place your order via the contact page.
Thank you - Reg Down
~ In the News ~
Teachers, Homeschoolers and Parents - please note that I have a whole webpage devoted to tales, stories, myths, and poems for children. You are free to download them for personal, family or classroom use.
UPCOMING BOOKS: Later in the year an autumn book, The Treasure Cave, will come out. The manuscript is written, but the illustrations take a while. It is set at Thanksgiving, when Farmer John and crew go to their cottage beside the sea. The book is filled with sea tales and creation myths.
UPCOMING:- The Midsummer Mouse will be out in May, 2013. It is full of Midsummer fun. Subtitle: Midsummer tales of Tiptoes Lightly and the Summer Queen.
The sun is rising higher into the sky every day. Summer has come and Farmer John builds a great pile of wood for the Midsummer's Eve festival taking place on his land. Tom Nutcracker and June Berry's whole school is coming to celebrate. June Berry forgets a basket by the oak tree when they are helping their dad build the wood pile. A small detail to us, perhaps, but one which leads Jeremy Mouse on a merry dance as Jemima Mouse tries to preserve the cookie for the festival. Meanwhile, Pine Cone and Pepper Pot are not opening their door to anyone other than Tiptoes (and even then only reluctantly). Their beards, it seems, are entangled. Hopelessly entangled. This sends Tiptoes all over the forest to find a way to get pine resin out of beards. Then there is the problem of Ompliant the Elephant. What are Tom and June to do with him? How will they keep him out of sight? But the clever kids come up with a wonderful idea to hide a pachyderm in plain sight. Finally, the Summer Queen begins to appear here and there, and in the end joins the festival and tells The Tale of Turana before mysteriously vanishing before the crowd.
The Midsummer Mouse is a summer tale, full of midsummer mirth, misadventure, mystery and delight. It will bring sparkles to children's eyes, and laughter to adults, too. Suitable, as always with Tiptoes Lightly tales, for family reading from kindergarten through age 10 or so.
138 pages, 6x9 format, $16.50 retail.
Now available in some vendor's stores - click here for list. I have given my small vendors first dibs on this book and it will not be available on Amazon until July.
A Tangle of Tales: short stories for children.
A collection of forty-two stories for children. Inside you’ll find nature tales, riddle tales, fables, fairy tales, poems, and creation myths both serious and sanguine. Suitable for children from kindergarten through grade four. Tons of illustrations and drawings.
January 2013: Kindle Edition Only.
Butterbrains is a 'traditional' fairy tale - but with twists, of course. I've had it on file for years and have never known what to do with it as it's too short except for a picture book (which I still might do) and too long for a quick read (it's 4760 words/10-12 full pages). So in the meanwhile, here it is on Kindle - not a media I recommend for children, but one which will suffice if you are reading to your children when on a road trip or holiday or a teacher needs to pull up quickly at school.
Once, long ago, there lived a simpleton. He was so simple that he ate his soup with a fork and buttered his bread with a spoon. But he was a kind soul who spoke with the animals, and they came to him when they were hurt or needed help. In summertime, butterflies flitted about his head, and it was a common sight to see him walking along, paying not the slightest heed, while round and round his head the butterflies shimmered and danced. The townsfolk laughed and jeered and called him Butterbrains—or worse—but he never seemed to mind and went on his way.
Now the king of the land had a beautiful daughter. She was as fair as the sun and as mysterious as the moon. One day she fell terribly ill; so ill that none of the doctors could help her and everyone thought she would die.
One night she had a dream, and calling her father to her she said: "I dreamed that if a man journeys through the twelve kingdoms surrounding our castle I will become well again."
This is how the story begins and off Butterbrains goes through the twelve kingdoms and twelve extraordinary adventures until he arrives back (transformed, of course) and wins the hand of the lovely princess. Suitable for kindergarten through adulthood. Enjoy!
Available on Amazon's Kindle here. $3.95 Don't have a Kindle? No problem. Here's the link to their free download of their reader to your PC.
The Last little Cat now has a new cover! And it's available on Amazon.
The Last little Cat is a loving, compassionate book, perfect for the early reader. It was written by Meindert DeJong, the 1954 Newbery award winner for The Wheel on the School.
See here for synopsis and details.
September 2012: Now available on Amazon - The King of Ireland's Son.
I have edited, endnoted and annotated this edition with teachers and the North American reader in mind - especially so as this book is a standard item in the Waldorf school curriculum because of its depth and appropriateness for children. All those wonderful Celtic and Irish names have been given an endnote stating how they are pronounced and, if possible, their meaning. Also included are the many points of literary and cultural interest that are so easily bypassed but which add layers of depth, meaning and often sly humor to the story. As with my other Colum books, I have added a map covering the geography of the story, and a brief biography of the master storyteller himself.
The King of Ireland’s Son is without doubt the best of Padraic Colum’s children’s books. Originally published in 1916, this classic has stood the test of time and remains one of the greatest set of tales ever. These are no stories told by an academic or scholar, but rousing, living tales recounted from Colum’s own childhood in Ireland. There, as a boy, he heard firsthand the myths and sagas, folk and fairy tales from itinerant storytellers who wandered the roads and told their stories in exchange for a roof over their heads and a bite to eat. He was a witness to the last generation of a long tradition stretching far back into the mists of time. Colum won awards and recognition aplenty for his work in his adopted country, the United States, and for the whole of his long life he carried on the storyteller’s tradition. Even now, though he is long gone from us, his voice still sounds fresh and clear and full of life through the written text.
Willy Pogany, a Hungarian artist, was a contemporary of Colum. He illustrated this volume with a wonderful sense of artistic fantasy and playfulness.
Format: 6x9, Pages: 254, Price: $14.95. Quantity discounts apply. Purchase on Amazon
September 2012: The Gate Swings In by Nora Burglon is now available on Amazon. This edition has been freshly edited and reformatted.
Minda is an orphan, taken in by her practical and less-than-enthusiastic aunt. Minda and her crafty goat, Stor Geta, struggle to find a place called home - and to get the money her aunt insists she must earn for her school clothes and shoes. She tries being a servant and house-help, an entrepreneur, even a herd-girl up on the mountains, but nothing comes easy. And yet there is much joy and adventure. She meets a young widow, the Mistress of Dalstorp, and together they face the world until at last they win through and find each other.
The Gate Swings In captures the mood, culture and wisdom of the Swedish folk. It is a perfect complement to Burglon's much loved Danish tale, Sticks across the Chimney.
Format: 6x9; Pages:176; Price: $14.95 - please note that this is a higher price than the Whole Spirit Press edition only available from this site.
May 2012: HERE IS THE NEW COVER of the wonderful, epic tale of Gilgamesh by Bernarda Bryson which I am taking on from Whole Spirit Press. First written down in Sumerian cuneiform 3,000 years before the birth of Christ, the story of Gilgamesh tells of a great flood and one man, befriended by the gods, who survived by building an ark. In the feats of Gilgamesh and his companion, Enkidu, are found the sources of a number of great mythological heroes and tales.
This tale has numerous versions in different cultures spanning thousands of years. Bernarda Bryson has distilled it with wonderful sensitivity and tact. It is completely suitable for children. Bryson spent decades studying the myth and the archeogogy of the region and period - this can be seen in her illustrations and the mastery with which she tackles the story.
The book will now be in full color - it has over 80 lithographs and prints! The page count is 100, format is 8.5 x 11 inches, price is $24.95. SAMPLE - CHAPTER 9
Interested in bulk orders of this book? Let me know via the contact page.
For individual purchases it is now available on Amazon.
July 2012 - NOW AVAILABLE from Pied Piper Press: Padraic Colum's classic: The Children of Odin - The Book of Northern Myths.
Meet Thor, Baldur, Freya, Odin and all the higher gods - and Loki too, mischief maker and clever deceiver. Filled with the most extraordinary tales of great depth, imagination and wisdom it is impossible to resist this wonderful book - and Colum's telling is outstanding. I have edited for clarity and added some footnotes for unusual words (not much of either was needed), as well as including a brief biography of Padraic Colum. This version is thoroughly appropriate for children - grade 4 and up.
Willy Pogany has illustrated this edition with elegant drawings.
228 pages, 9x6 format, $12.95 Purchase book on Amazon
June 2012: I have reillustrated (22 mostly full page drawings) and given a new cover to this title by the master storyteller, Padraic Colum. I also put in footnotes for unusual or uncommon words, a map of the countries visited in the story, plus a sketch of a bird mentioned in the text. It is now available on Amazon.
Please note that there is a price difference in the two editions:
The Whole Spirit Press edition = $10.95 (available from this site)
Amazon edition = $12.95
Sample Chapter. Enjoy - it's a great story for 9 to 12 year olds!
April 2012: Sir Gillygad and the Gruesome Egg
Sir Gillygad is a knight, a doughty knight who rides about on his trusty frog called Gorf. They venture forth on adventures bold and exciting: to the Twinkle, to Holey Hill, to the Plain of Dreams—even as far as World's End. Then rumors are heard, rumors of an egg, a Gruesome Egg, with two leggs, a left leg and a right leg, and the leggs were bird’s leggs—which makes sense in an eggy sort of way. It is haunting the Daark Forest close to the Mumbly Mews and the gerwine Greneff. So off Sir Gillygad gallops (well, hoppedy-hops), there to meet and confront this unique and remarkable beast.
Sir Gillygad and the Gruesome Egg is an adventuresome tale, suitable for children aged 9 to 12 or thereabouts—and adults too, if they still are young at heart and open to the wonders that speak to the mystery of life and becoming.
"Sir Gillygad and the Gruesome Egg is well worth condsidering for the elementary-middle school bridge." Midwest Review
April 2012: Padraic Colum’s magical set of tales: The Boy who Knew what the Birds said.
Page count is 158, format is 6x9 and price $16.50. Purchase book on Amazon or bulk order through this site.
Read a sample chapter here.
March 2012: I have taken on 5 titles from Whole Spirit Press - see the tab above for details on each book. They are:
Gilgamesh - by Bernarda Bryson. Gilgamesh is the first epic tale known to us. This edition is wonderfully written and with great sensitivity. It is suitable for children.
The Last little Cat - by Meindert Dejong (a wonderful tale for kindergarten through grade 2 - used as a reader for grade 2. Check out the reviews on this one).
Sticks across the Chimney ~ a story of Denmark by Nora Burglon (I gave it a new cover and it is now available on Amazon as well as from me).
The Gate swings in ~ a story of Sweden - by Nora Burglon ON SUPER SALE - 35% OFF - ANY QUANTITIES!
The Boy apprenticed to an Enchanter - Padraic Colum (a great adventure for grade 5 or 6).
Sticks across the Chimney has been given a fresh new cover.
Here's a recent Amazon review - "FAVORITE WITH MY DAUGHTER: As soon as we finished this book my seven year old daughter asked if we could go online and look for "Sticks Across the Chimney 2." The characters are sweet, there is an overarching mystery/adventure, but it is mixed with everyday life vignettes that are sprinkled with humor, wisdom, and charm as they paint a picture of rural life in (early-mid?) 20th century Denmark. Woven in with the story is a good bit of Viking history and culture, which makes it a good slections for unit studies about the Vikings."
Now available on Amazon.