A Library of the School of EducationDPIUW-Madison School Of EducationUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonUW-Madison LibraryUW-Madison Catalog
About the CCBC
Authors and Illustrators
Recommended Books for Children and Young Adults
CCBC Calendar and Events
CCBC Podcasts
CCBC Publications
Intellectual Freedom

Support the CCBC
Support the CCBC
Are you a...K-12 TeacherLibrarianEarly Childhood Care ProviderUW Student / Faculty

Stone Soup

by Jon J. Muth

Published by Scholastic Press, 2003
32 pages
ISBN: 0-439-33909-X

Ages 5 - 8

Jon J Muth blends a traditional European folktale with elements of Chinese folklore and the Buddhist story tradition in an inventive retelling of the "Stone Soup" story. The three monks Hok, Lok and Siew (deities from Chinese folklore) wander into a village where hard times have closed the doors of trust, so that even neighbors are suspicious of one another. Only one small, brave girl is willing to approach them. The monks describe their plan to make stone soup, and the child willingly helps. Curiosity draws villagers out of their homes, and soon one person after another is bringing something to add to the pot-carrots and spices, pea pods and gingerroot, mung beans and taro root. The monks are not only helping the villagers make soup, they are helping them open their hearts to one another and build a sense of community. "With the gifts you have given, we will always have plenty. You have shown us that sharing makes us all richer." In an author's note, Muth notes that in the Buddhist tradition, tricksters seek to spread enlightenment rather than gain anything for themselves. His note also invites children to find symbols from Asian culture that he has incorporated into the illustrations of this inspiring tale. CCBC categories: Folklore, Mythology, and Traditional Literature.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center

book cover
Book of the Week

In accordance with the UW-Madison Accessibility Policy, this site makes every effort to comply with the World Wide Web standards defined in the Federal Rehabilitation Act Section 508, specifically subsections 1194.22 and subsection 1194.31. If you need additional resources or have any questions or concerns about this site, please contact the site administrator for more information.
UW crest