For these ten masterly retellings, entrancing and gloriously funny by turns, Robert Leeson has selected a feast of tales that give a rich flavour of the Thousand and One Nights. The collection ranges from well-loved tales of treasure, magical power and quick wits (Aladdin, The Fisherman and the Jinni, Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves) to hilarious romps (The Woman with Five Suitors, The Story of the Hunchback, The Sleeper and the Waker); it includes a magical romance (The Ebony Horse), and also a scattering of spiced sweetmeats (The Dream, The Donkey). Christina Balit's splendidly decorative illustrations together with a glossary and sources, create a classic that will enthral readers young and old.
ROBERT LEESON started a career in journalism aged 16. In 1946 he began two years' army service in the Middle East and developed a keen interest in Arabic culture. Since the early 1970s he has written history books and over 70 children's books, and contributed to literary journals. His book Grange Hill Rules OK? (Collins/BBC) inspired the highly successful BBC series Grange Hill. Over the past 30 years he has visited over 600 schools and libraries encouraging children in reading and creative writing. In 1985 he won the Eleanor Farjeon Award for Services to Children and Literature. CHRISTINA BALIT studied at Chelsea School of Art and the Royal College of Art. In 1982 she won a Thames Television Travelling Design Bursary and illustrated Report to Greco by Niko Kazantisakis. She has exhibited widely and is also a playwright.