The Phoenix of Persia by Sally Pomme Clayton and Amin Hassanzadeh Sahrif (Tiny Owl 2019) Tells the story of baby Prince Zal born with hair as white as snow. His father rejects the baby and leaves him on a cold mountainside to die. The baby is found by the mythical Simorgh, the wise Phoenix of Persia. She brings the baby up in her nest and teaches him everything she knows, including forgiveness, so that father and son can be reunited again. Sally Pomme Clayton re-tells a traditional Iranian story taken from the Shahnameh, written more than a thousand years ago.
‘With acceptance at its heart, Sally Pomme Clayton’s telling really does feel like a drama unfolding before you, accompanied by Amin Hassanzadeh Sharif’s wonderful, richly textured, jewel-hued scenes. That’s not all though: there’s a QR code at the beginning of the book you can use to listen to a beautiful musical accompaniment on Iranian instruments to Sally Pomme’s narration. Rich in classroom potential, this book is FABULOUS!’ Reading Hub, Jill Bennet
‘This story provides an insight into Iranian culture and history… It introduces Prince Zal who features in many other stories in this Iranian epic and of course the firebird a mythical creature guaranteed to capture the imagination.’ Books for Keeps
This book is special! Inside the book is a QR code to a free downloadable 30 min track of narration by the author set to specially composed Iranian music where each instrument represents a different character in the story. Find out more about the music, instruments and musical traditions in Iran with this wonderful hub created by City University The book also has a free downloadable teacher resource pack with ideas you can use across the curriculum. There is even a box or artefacts you can borrow to display in your classroom.
Sally Pomme Clayton performs the story for audiences of all ages with mysterious musical sounds and special objects, bringing the phoenix and her story to life. She has performed the story at: The British Library; Edinburgh International Book Festival; libraries and schools through the UK; The British Museum.
‘This superb collaboration between author, illustrator and musicians is ideal for use in schools, and related teaching resources are available. Perfect to explore traditional tales from other cultures, its underlying themes of acceptance, forgiveness and wisdom are still relevant today.’ Book Trust
‘The tale is enhanced by a downloadable narration by the author, which is set to inspiring original music, where each instrument represents a different character. The book includes details about the instruments used, as well as information about Iran’s ancient tradition of storytelling, music and poetry.’ Book Trust