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The Legend of the Persian Carpet
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The Legend of the Persian Carpet (Legends)

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  90 Ratings  ·  25 Reviews
When King Balash's precious diamond is stolen, the grief-stricken king can no longer rule, and the country falls into chaos, until a clever young boy comes up with a scheme to bring the jewel's radiance back into the palace.
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published October 27th 1993 by Putnam Juvenile
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Skylar Burris
Nov 13, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens
Beautiful pictures. Held my daughter's interest. There seems to be less of an emphasis on virtue than the other legends we have read retold by the same author. A king is distracted from his duty and can only be won back to fulfilling it because a boy caters to his desire for a rainbow filled room. No lesson learned; no reformation of character. The point seems to be simply to explain the origin of the Persian carpet and nothing more, but in other legends explaining the origin of various things ( ...more
Nov 19, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: primary and intermediate grades
Tomie dePaola founded a publishing house devoted to multicultural folktales. This one is illustrated by someone other than himself. The artist studied Persian tapestries in order to give that effect to the illustrations. It's a gorgeous book! I wonder how closely his interpretation is to the original Persian tale?
Mar 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing
The pictures are honestly what made this book a favorite for me. The illustrator does a wonderful job of showing the contrast between bright, filled rooms and empty, stark spaces.
Jun 24, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: trad-lit
This story about a Persian king and his appreciation for a diamond was a bit odd for me. The book said his most prized possession was his large diamond, but that he wasn't a selfish man. I realize those aren't necessarily combined traits, but it just seems...different. In this story, a thief steals his beloved diamond and ends up breaking it by accident. The King is taken to wear the pieces are scattered and he vows to stay there, because the colors there are the only thing that brings his life ...more
Victoria Schmidt
Nov 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Title: The Legend of the Persian Carpet
Author: Tomie DePaola
Illustrator: Claire Ewart
Genre: Legend
Themes: Beauty, Thievery, Persian culture
Opening line:
Many, many years ago, in the land once called Persia, there lived a kind and wise king, who was much loved by his people

Brief book summary: There was a king who lived in Persia. His most valuable possession was a large diamond he had in his palace. He was a generous king who didn’t guard the diamond because he wanted to allow anyone to come see
Jennifer Sauer
Feb 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
What can I say? It's a Persian fairy tale- of course I loved it <3 <3
Jan 21, 2010 rated it did not like it
Well, illustrator Claire Ewart certainly had her work cut out for her in this book. Readers from all over the globe have had a relationship with Tomie dePaola for decades, getting to know him through his works in a way that almost never happens with any author, because he is so open with his personal family history. Tomie dePaola's stories and painting style blend so comfortably together that in the eyes of many (including myself) the two are virtually married, and it's hard to imagine anyone e ...more
Apr 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
When we started to read this book, we were a bit startled. A book, written by Tomie dePaola, but illustrated by someone else? How unusual! But the note at the beginning of the story explains the rationale and it makes perfect sense. And I think that the choice was wise, as the illustrator (Claire Ewart) creates a beautiful depiction of the tale. We really enjoyed reading this story together. We are working our way slowly through Tomie dePaola's vast collection of stories and we really love his b ...more
Yasmin Gomez Geng
A beautiful diamond shines color and light throughout the palace of King Balash. Being a kind and unselfish king, every afternoon, when the light is just right, the king opens the doors to his palace to let the people come take a look at the diamond and its beautiful light.

But one day, a thief takes the diamond, drops it and breaks it as he is running away.

The kind king, so upset over the loss of the beautiful diamond leaves his palace to stare at the broken pieces. His people band together to m
Becky B
When the cherished diamond of their benevolent monarch is stolen and shattered, Payam and others of Street of the Weavers, create a carpet to mimic the beauty that was destroyed.

This is a beautifully illustrated folk tale. You’ve got to wonder about what kind of monarch the king really was if he was willing to give up the kingdom to look at diamond pieces all day (or why they couldn’t just build him a new castle around the place where the diamond broke)? So the story had some flaws, but it was
Jan 09, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: kids
This book was fine, but it didn't really capture my kids' (or my) attention. I found the transitions a little clunky; I kept thinking I was skipping pages when I wasn't because bits seemed like they were missing. Not major plot points or bits of dialogue, just transition sentences from one scene to another. This book did prompt me to look up whether a diamond can break/shatter or not (turns out it can).
Lauren Suchomski
Feb 17, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens, legend
I used this as the read aloud component for an ongoing folklore unit with second grade. It was to help show the characteristics of a legend and while my kiddos liked it- they oooed and ahhhed over the diamond and the carpet- I don't think it was the best example of a legend I could have used. Still they liked the story and it was nice to get a legend that took place in a drastically different culture.
Jan 30, 2014 rated it liked it
How strange to read a Tomie dePaola book that he didn't illustrate! Still, it's a nice story, and the illustrations, by Claire Ewart, are lovely watercolors.

This is a good story for anyone who wants to read about Persia and/or beautiful Persian carpets. For me, this was a "once is enough" read.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I read to a second grade class. Their teacher had been doing a unit on Tomie DePaola but had missed this one. It is in our library with the fables and fairy tales, unlike many of his other books found in the easy fiction section. The students enjoyed the story. I hadn't read it before. DePaola didn't illustrate this book so that was a bit different on his part.
Tara Geske
Sep 09, 2012 rated it liked it
This was not one of my favorite books. The story didn't really catch me and I kind of became bored reading it. However, the pictures were very pretty and depicted the story very well. The children would like having the pictures so closely represent the story because they would be able to understand the whole story just by looking at the pictures.
This a great picture book explaining the legend behind the origin of the jewel-patterned Persian carpet. And it is the first time someone other than Tomie dePaola has illustrated one of his books. Claire Ewart more than aptly handled the job. Her illustration are beautiful -- bright and bold. She selected the perfect colors to tell the story.
Jen Rothmeyer
May 29, 2014 rated it it was ok
Not written in a way to make you engage with any of the characters. Not that interesting.
Mar 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
This was a great book! It really shows that no matter how big or small you are you can always find a solution to a problem. Great lesson for children of all ages.
Amanda Connelly
Sep 04, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: edrd314
Good for history purposes. For older students in elementary school. Shows children a different kind of fairy tail that they are not used to.
Gianni Llano
Mar 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
I loved the illustrations of the book. It was a great story about the upcoming of the Persian Carpet.
rated it it was ok
Sep 13, 2013
Keir Bridges
rated it liked it
May 25, 2017
Stephanie Carlson
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Apr 28, 2014
rated it it was amazing
Jun 04, 2016
Jill Amirpashaie
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Jan 12, 2016
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Dec 05, 2011
rated it really liked it
Sep 29, 2007
Chris Webber
Mar 30, 2014 rated it liked it
I read this for design/illustration ideas for my upcoming book. It was helpful.
Mar 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book is so cute! I love the ending!!
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Tomie dePaola (pronounced Tommy da-POW-la) is best known for his books for children.
He's been published for 40 years and has written and/or illustrated over 200 books, including 26 Fairmount Avenue, Strega Nona, and Meet the Barkers.
Tomie dePaola and his work have been recognized with the Caldecott Honor Award, the Newbery Honor Award and the New Hampshire Governor's Arts Award of Living Treasure.
More about Tomie dePaola...

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Legends (5 books)
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