Got an email from a team of two authors who want to start a Magic Tree House-type series of books for 4-8 year olds, with world mythology as the main content delivered.
You know Magic Tree House-- 2 spunky kids find a magic tree house, are transported back in time to various literary and historical locales, where they participate in famous narratives and events. One of the Greek-oriented titles is "Hour of the Olympics".
Authors Rudi Liden and Rachel Hill would like to capitalize on the big success of MTH with a series of their own, and two spunky kids of their own, Penny and Bobby, but in order to do so, they need start-up funds. That's why they have a kickstarter.com page. They don't have much time left to make their goal, so I agreed to spread the word a bit. They have a nice video with engaging art, and their first book is about the Midas touch.
Midas was a king of Phrygia, now part of the nation of Turkey, who famously was granted a favor of the god Dionysus after saving one of the god's followers. He wanted everything he touched to turn to gold.
This story is not strictly Greek mythology, but a kind of ancient fan fiction, where authors in late antiquity took an original figure from Greek history and endowed him with a story.
Liden and Hill would like to use this opportunity to tell young readers about the pitfalls of desire. I personally would like to see how this comes out, though I've told the authors I think it's very tricky to do foreign cultures well for 4-8 year olds. Most of the time you end up just reinforcing American values and the foreign is lost.
Yeah, but it's a lot more edifying than Ben 10, Liden counters.
Click over and see what you think.