The Knight, the Princess, and the Rock: A Classic Persian Tale
Written by Sara Azizi
Illustrated by Alireza Sadeghian
As an ancient civilization with a rich heritage of storytelling, Persia is a wonderful place to find material for children’s books. This beautiful little tale proves it. The story itself is certainly simple enough for third graders to understand and embrace. This may be a candidate to read aloud in a classroom, though. The concepts of kings, knights, and magic may need a little discussion.
When a knight is sent on a mission to rid farmlands of destructive wild boars, he finds himself in enemy territory. This does not prevent him from falling in love with the princess of the land he’s in. The enemy king discovers the knight’s presence and imprisons him in a deep hole covered by a magic rock. The princess is also banished. She is able to keep the knight alive with food passed through a hole. Finally, help arrives from the knight’s home. Through love and prayer, the help frees the knight. The knight and princess return to his home, where they are married and live a happy life.
Comprehension can be served by a number of reading activities. The publisher’s website (www.wisdomtalespress.com) offers a page of illustration for the reader to color. The author gives extensive details on the background and interpretation of the story, leaving the reader to explore further. The book was a finalist on the USA “Best Books 2012” reading list in two categories.
The rich and detailed illustrations bring further life to the story. The knight on horseback chases the wild boars. The princess brings food to the knight in a hole. The rescuer, on camelback, searches for the knight. The reader is there.