Title: Selected TalesSelected-Tales
Author: Beatrix Potter
Pages: 125
Reading Level: 8 & up
Star Rating: ★★★★

Beatrix Potter’s works have delighted children for generations. This small volume contains four of her most popular works.

The Tale of Peter Rabbit. Peter Rabbit’s mother has sent her children out to play in the fields and lanes, but has expressly forbidden them to go into Mr. McGregor’s garden. But Peter, a very naughty rabbit indeed, squeezes underneath Mr. McGregor’s gate and begins nibbling on his lettuces! When Mr. McGregor catches sight of Peter, Peter knows that he must run for his life. But will he escape Mr. McGregor’s wrath?

The Tale of Timmy Tiptoes. Timmy and Goody Tiptoes are prudently gathering nuts for the winter when Timmy is wrongfully accused of stealing another squirrel’s nuts. Timmy is taken by a gang of squirrels and stuffed into  a tiny hole – much to small for him! – to be left there until he confesses. Can Timmy think of a way to escape?

The Tale of the Pie and the Patty-Pan. When Ribby, the pussy cat, invites Duchess, the little dog, to tea, Duchess is hesitant to accept. She loves a party, but she cannot stand the thought of eating a mouse pie, which (she is sure) Ribby will serve. What to do! But then Duchess conceives a bold idea – what if she were to substitute a nice veal and ham pie for the mouse one? Ribby would never tell the difference…

The Tale of Johnny Town-Mouse. It was all a mistake. Timmy Willie wasn’t supposed to go to town – he just happened to fall asleep in the hamper as it was waiting to be taken to the city. And now, here he is in the middle of a bustling house with a cat lurking about. Of course, Johnny Townmouse is being uncommonly hospitable, but still, Timmy Willie wishes he could just go home. Will he ever see his lovely garden again?

Discussion.

Of course, the entire atmosphere of the stories is unreal – the little animal characters wear clothes and in The Pie and the Patty-Pan live in their own houses. However, the stories are clean.

I did not enjoy The Tale of Timmy Tiptoes nearly as much as the others. It seemed to have less of a point. Also, Chippy Hackee has run away from his wife (who is hardworking and industrious, while he is lazy), but in the end he returns to her and she nurses him.

Peter disobeys his mother, but, in the end, he has suffered for it.

Conclusion. Darling illustrations and cute stories.

Review © 2013 Laura Verret

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