Tag Archives: fairy tales

The Secret of the Purple Lake

Title: The Secret of the Purple Lake

Author: Yaba Badoe

Publisher: Cassava Republic Press, 2017

Number of pages: 122

Type of Book: Short stories, fiction, adventure, myths and legend.

Genre: Middle Grade

Age: 8 – 12

Buy it here: The Bookworm Café; https://cassavarepublic.biz/product/the-secret-of-the-purple-lake/ ; https://www.amazon.com/Secret-Purple-Lake-Yaba-Badoe/dp/1911115316   

Price: N1800, N1500; $3.99


The Secret of the Purple Lake is a collection of five interwoven, wildly adventurous stories set in the roaring seas and disappearing castles of Africa and Europe (think Ghana, Spain) and featuring characters with mythical origins and magical powers. It begins with the story of Ajuba, a young girl in Ghana who must undertake a perilous journey under the sea to recover her dead father’s bones and bring them home.


UP: This was a very exciting read for me for many reasons. First of all, I am a fan of stories with magic and adventure. Two, I had never read a short story collection quite like it. The craft element I found really appealing was the weaving together of several stories and this was not done in the form of parallel stories but using stories that happened through the span of two centuries. The major highlight was trying to discover how the stories were linked. Other highlights included the story of the fish-man, a scary creature with the body of a man and the head of a fish, Imoro the magic elephant, the walrus prince and of course, the Eagle-Queen. The characters are immediately likeable or totally despicable. I also absolutely loved the use of lyrical language.

‘Flying within the clouds is like dancing on vapour and gliding above them feels like kissing the Sun.’”

DOWN:  When I picked it up, I assumed it was a middle grade adventure (that is, one story and not a collection of stories) so when I started reading the first story, I felt cheated many times because I felt the writer was in a hurry and therefore wasted the opportunity to clearly describe things to me in a way that would make me connect more to her story. By the time I got to the end of the first story I was a bit puzzled, I felt like I had just read the outline of a middle grade adventure rather than a full-fledged short story.


🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟


  1. Watch the author read from the book here:

CHALLENGE: The Secret of the Purple Lake


  1. Write three interwoven stories.  (500 words each)

Send your answers to ugochinyelu.anidi@gmail.com.

Entry requirements: Entrants must be within the 8 – 12 age range. The first correct entry will be announced on this page and will win a copy of this book.

Answers must be submitted before 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, June 27th 2021.

Next Book of the Week:


Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Hansel and Gretel











Title: Hansel and Gretel

Author: The Brothers Grimm

Publisher: Award Publications

Number of pages: 24

Type of Book: Fiction; Classic: See and Say Story Book

Age: 0 – 4

Buy it here: http://product.chelisbookazine.com/product/hansel-and-gretel/; https://www.amazon.com/Hansel-Gretel-Read-Along-Me/dp/1841357715;  

Free download here: http://burstbase.net/files/G2_Burst_STORIES_5_HanselandGretel_BW.pdf

Price: N410; $4:95


Hansel and Gretel lived with their dad and step mother. They were very poor and sometimes didn’t have enough food to eat. One day, their wicked step mother came up with a plan to abandon the children in the forest. Hansel and Gretel found out and found their way back home. So their stepmother left them in the forest a second time and this time they got lost! Read the book to learn about their adventure in the forest, and the rich wicked witch who captured them and tried to eat Hansel!


UP: First off, it is a timeless fairytale and one children have loved for centuries. Secondly, it is one of the titles in the Read Along With Me Series, a series devoted to introducing toddlers to the joy of reading using picture words. Picture words are little pictures of characters and other things in the book, used in place of words and strewn between the words in the book. How this works: In the course of reading, you pause and point at the words, so that your toddler can ‘see’ the picture and ‘say’ the word. My two-and-a-half-year-old loves this series to PIECES! The series has at least 10 titles, all classics! Looking for a Christmas present for your kids? And they’re reasonably priced too! Other books in the series include Jack and the Beanstalk, Little Red Riding Hood, Puss in Boots.

Finally, the story also has a moral or two for children.

DOWN: None.


5 Stars (I would give it 6 over 5 if I could)


  1. This story was first published in 1812 over 200 hundred years ago!!
  2. The Grimm Brothers, Jacob and Wilhelm wrote a collection of over 200 German fairy tales including popular favourites like Cinderella, Rapunzel and Rumpelstiltskin.


  • Watch a video here:

CHALLENGE: Hansel and Gretel


  1. Draw and colour Hansel and Gretel. (2 – 3 year olds)
  2. What items did Hansel drop on the ground to help them find their way home? Draw them. (4 year olds)

Send your answers to ugochinyelu.anidi@gmail.com

Entry requirements: Entrants must be within the 2 – 4 age range. The first correct entry will be announced on this page and will win a copy of this book.

Answers must be submitted before 12:00am on Wednesday, December 7th 2016.

Next Book of the Week:

THE STORY OF JESUS by Award Publications


Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.


photocredits: Ebay.je ; Sweetcouch.com