Chanticleer and the Fox
by Geoffrey Chaucer, adapted and illustrated by Barbara Cooney/ published 1958 by Thomas Y. Crowell
Any book adapted from the Canterbury Tales gets a double thumbs up from me. This Caldecott Medal winner is a tale of the woes of flattery, and the illustrations and language are impeccable.
Now this fine rooster had seven hens, all colored exceedingly like him. The hen with the prettiest throat was called fair Demoiselle Partlet. She was polite, discreet, debonair, and companionable, and she conducted herself so well since the time that she was seven days old that, truly, she held the heart of Chanticleer all tightly locked.
It's funny because my copy bought at a library sale is all marked up, obviously where a story teller had updated words so that his audience would follow and also altered any religious references. The back flap has a description of the author and her life and my favorite part reads: Research for the pictures in the book went on both at home and in libraries. A neighbor loaned Miss Cooney some chickens and the local Grange contributed a pen, so that she could keep the chickens in her studio to use as models for Chanticleer and his harem.
Christmas in the Barn
The Crows of Pearblossom
Wynken, Blynken and Nod
The Man Who Didn't Wash His Dishes