A new collection of books is reinventing the art of storytelling with illustrated tales to connect children to Indian art and culture.
Inspired by India's festivals, legends and arts, Mama Suranya Books is an independent multi-lingual publication that seeks to educate children in Indian art.
The 43-year-old author, Suranya Aiyar, a mother of two, uses different Indian folk and classical arts with elements of contemporary cartoon styles to tell fresh stories.
She combines illustrations inspired by miniature art, with original stories that are appealing to the modern child, but at the same time rooted in Indian culture.
For instance, she turns the North-Indian love of mangoes and the joy of the rains after the long hot summer, into motifs that appear in the tales she tells.
"The idea is for the drawings to feel familiar to the child, while at the same time giving them a sense of Indian art," she says.
Some of the books in Aiyar's kitty include: "The Peacock Who Wanted to Fly like an Eagle" (for ages 4-8 years), "The Battle of Northway" (for ages 7 years and above), and "A Summer's Tale" (for ages 4-8 years).
Taking from the epic battles from the Ramayana and Mahabharata, "The Battle of Northway" is a new story with the same ancient heart.
It is filled with gripping drama and magnificent illustrations, and also includes cut-and-paste activity, allowing the child to make the most of his/her reading experience.
Currently, the books are available in English and Hindi. The publication plans to roll out translations in other Indian languages as well.
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