My Big Book of Fairy Tales

In 1987, Marshall Cavendish revisited the world of Story Teller by publishing a big hardback book called My Big Book of Fairy Tales. Even though the publication did not have the Story Teller branding, it was essentially a compilation of the best stories from Story Teller. It contained 73 stories from the two series and three Christmas issues. The original text and illustrations were used, except for the story The Frog Prince which featured new artwork (for no apparent reason). The book was rereleased in 1989 with a different cover and again in 1994. Unlike the partwork, My Big Book of Fairy Tales was not accompanied by a cassette. This book was so successful that Marshall Cavendish followed it up with a second big compilation, A Treasury of Goodnight Stories.


My Big Book of Fairy Tales had the following stories:

  • Emperor’s New Clothes
  • Snow White
  • The Donkey who Fetched the Sea
  • Dick Whittington
  • Warrior Girl
  • The Parasol
  • Can You Keep A Secret?
  • The Princess and the Pea
  • The Selfish Giant
  • The Elves and the Shoemaker
  • The Pied Piper of Hamelin
  • Sleeping Beauty
  • The Midas Touch
  • Puss in Boots
  • Eleven Wild Swans
  • The Monster in the Labyrinth
  • Yuskin the Watchmaker
  • Wiser than the Czar
  • The Fishing  Stone
  • The Flying Jacket
  • Dragon Child
  • The Goblin Rat
  • The Mermaid who couldn’t Swim
  • The Little Tin Soldier
  • Kingdom of the Seals
  • Little Red Riding Hood
  • The Happy Prince
  • The Three Wishes
  • Larkspur Get Her Wings
  • The Green Maiden of the Lake
  • The Nightingale
  • Clara and the Nutcracker Doll
  • The Gingerbread Man
  • Sinbad and the Valley of Diamonds
  • The Moon and the Millpond
  • The Princess who met the North Wind
  • The Billy Goats Gruff
  • Cinderella
  • George and the Dragon
  • The Ugly Duckling
  • Aladdin and his Magic Lamp
  • Petrushka
  • Traveller Ned
  • Little Bear and the Beaver
  • Rumpelstiltskin
  • Hansel and Gretel
  • Jack and the Beanstalk
  • Young Kate
  • Rapunzel
  • Anya’s Garden
  • Beauty and the Beast
  • The Horn Flute
  • The Tree that Sang
  • Butterflies on the Moon
  • The Snow Queen
  • Snow
  • Snow Song
  • Mother Goose
  • The Hare and the Tortoise
  • Sinbad and the Amazing Islands
  • What the Smoke Said
  • The  Tinder Box
  • The Musicians of Bremen
  • Thumbelina
  • The Three Little Pigs
  • The Frog Prince
  • Touching Silver
  • The Bold Little Tailor
  • Cath’s Cradle
  • Brer Rabbit and the Tar-baby
  • Goldilocks
  • Dad and the Cat and the Tree
  • The Faery Flag



41 thoughts on “My Big Book of Fairy Tales

  1. elizabeth pesce says:

    hello, i am writing to find out how i might go about purchasing a copy of the 1987 edition of this book. we read it to our sons until it “wore out”, and we would love to have another copy to read to our grandchildren one day. can you help?? thanks so much, elizabeth pesce

    • timbertwig says:

      Hi Elizabeth. The 1987 edition (Snow White cover) has the same ISBN as the 1989 edition (Snow Queen cover). If you look for ISBN no. 0863076580 on Amazon, you’ll see several used copies on offer but there’s no guarantee which edition you’ll get. The Snow White cover is rarer than the Snow Queen cover but the two editions are otherwise identical. Good luck!

  2. walter says:

    I have been looking for an intact copy of this for MY ENTIRE ADULT LIFE! As a child it was too heavy to carry so it kept falling down the stairs and subsequently all the copywrite info is missing. Twenty years later I finally FOUND IT! this is the beginning of such a miracle- if you have any other information or picture regarding this edition (I had the Snow White cover) please contact me as soon as you can!
    thank you!

  3. Steph says:

    I’m glad to have found that there is a book with this many fairy tales. I just ordered one and can’t wait for it to get here so I can add those stories to story time for my son. They are so classic and great for every soul to enjoy!

    • timbertwig says:

      I’m sure you’ll enjoy the book, Steph. Where did you order it from? It will be interesting to see which edition you’ll get!

  4. Alana says:

    Wow I’m so happy to come across this info as i have been on the hunt for this book, it’s werid the effect is seams to have on anyone that has had a copy.

    An amazing book

  5. sunshine says:

    I read this to my children and have been looking for this book for awhile so that I can now read it to my grandchildren. It is a great book

  6. Ross Hobbs says:


    Can you tell me which of the above pictures are the 1987 edition and which is the 1989 edition.


  7. Katie says:

    I actually had the yellow copy in the middle growing up. Any ideas where I might find a copy? I have been looking everywhere and this sight is first time I saw a picture.


  8. Kris says:

    I ordered a copy through Abe Books. They have various copies for sale. And shipping is very low. I paid about $5 Cdn for all. I am just waiting for my copy to arrive. I am not sure which cover I got though.

    I too have been looking for this book for many years.
    My parents would read it to me each night when I was little in the 80s and now I have my own little four year old who loves fairy tales as much as I did so I have been wanting it to read to her.
    Thankfully I found this site!!!
    I couldn’t remember the name of the book or anything except for that there was a story of a mermaid and a story with a minotaur. Amazingly, this book seemed to be the only one that has both. And then I looked at the YouTube videos of the stories and as soon as I saw the Emperor’s New Clothes book, I knew it was the right one.

    Thank you!
    Thank you!
    Thank you!

    • Kris says:

      Just an update, I recieved the book and all for a slight separation from the spine on one of the pages which a bit of tape will easily fix, the book was in excellent condition.
      It was the Snow Queen copy.

  9. Katie says:

    I just recieved my copy I ordered from Amazon, I was extremely pleased as it is in excellent condition and only cost me £2.98! After flicking through I remembered what it said here about the different artwork for The Frog Prince, I am fairly certain that it is the same artwork that was used in the Australasian edition, which was called Story Time, unfortunately my set is still in New Zealand and I am unable to check!! Might be worth checking out, though!

  10. lisa says:

    you can also find all the pdf version of the books and audios for the whole collection of story teller 1 &2 on pirate bay as a torrent ( along with a pdf version of the big book of fairy tales ). Excited !!!!!!

  11. Cindy says:

    After 20 years I now have a copy of my childhood story book “My Big Book of Fairy Tales” (1979 edition) to give to my Mum for Mothers day this year. She was always very regretful that it was left behind when we immigrated to Australia. I never would have found it if not for your website. So thank you very much! For those who are interested – I purchased it from Alibris for $130 AUD and it took 5 weeks and 5 days to get from Canada to Australia, but it was worth the wait!

  12. Maria says:

    Does anybody know if any of these follow-up books were published in other languages just like the Story Teller partwork was, and if so, what editions are there? I have been looking but so far haven’t found anything. Many thanks!

  13. ana says:


    I’m trying to order the book with the ISBN 0863076580 but it says horizon publishing and not cavendish. Did I miss something?

  14. Annie says:

    I am looking to purchase the 1994 edition of ‘My Big Book of Fairy Tales’ (the one with the Red Cover which features Little Red Riding Hood). This is my favourite book of all time (even though I am now 25 years of age), and I had passed it on to my nephew but it appears to have gone missing. I would be delighted if I could trace another copy of this book and would be most grateful if you could advise of where I could retrieve a hardback copy.

  15. Cait says:

    Thank you so much! I have spent weeks and weeks searching online for this book. I remembered the pictures and stories so vividly from my childhood. I used to pore over every page and I wore the book out til the cover fell off. I could not of course remember the compiler as I was just a child when I read it and I couldn’t even remember the title except that it was very generic. I remembered many of the stories that were in it but that didn’t help much. Finally I came upon the youtube clips and followed them here. I’m so excited to have tracked down the book and bought a copy to share with my own children now.

  16. Gillian Moffat says:

    Hi, does anyone know where I could get a copy of the one that is green and white with the snow queen on the front? I had a copy my gran bought me when I was wee and I wore it out, I think my mum binned it as pages were falling out but now have a daughter of my own and would love to get her the same one. Any help would be grateful. Thanks. Gillian. X

  17. Fiona Purves says:

    I have dreamt of owning this book again after my mum gave it away without me knowing when I grew up..
    I’m going to be 30 this year and finding this website and just purchasing it on amazon is the greatest gift ever! I’ve been searching for this book for years! Eternally grateful to the website and photo.
    I do hope I get the 1989 snow queen edition x

  18. sophie smith says:

    i have been trying to find the edition i had when i was younger, i currently own 4 of the snow queen but i am looking for the snow white cover

    • Nicole says:

      Hi i had this book as a kid and now im having my own baby i really want to find the version with the snow queen on it. Please can u tell me where i can buy one

  19. Alexandra says:

    From the bottom of my heart: Thank you. I had this book as a kid (the 1987 version, as it turns out) and I’ve been trying to find out what it was for a very long time. It’s been years. I’m really happy right now!

    I remembered some of the illustrations (a melted metal heart) and worked my way back from them to some of the stories (fairy tales, ok but which book mixed HC Andersen and Grimm and many others?) and looked for books published by or before 1989 because I remember having it with me on a family trip to West Germany (and reading it on the sleeping train while perched on my bunk and watching the flat landscape pull by).

    The search was more visual because that was the one thing I was sure of. These images had engrained themselves deeply into my memory. In the mean time I went on a number of wild goose chases with Google image search and found some beautiful work by illustrators who published their fairy tale work as early as at the turn of last century that is now all over pinterest and such.

    Your post here was absolutely vital in finding this book because brought everything together. I’m also really grateful that you explained that there are multiple versions with the same ISBN. That spared me some disappointment because I’ve since ordered a used copy online and the 1989 version is much easier to find, as you pointed out, although I want the 1987 version.

    You made someone very happy (and nostalgic) today. Thank you.

  20. Chang says:

    Hi, I’m so thankful for your post since I was seriously looking for this book that brings back so many memories! Just a question, does the 1994 edition (the red one I believe) have the same ISBN as the other two? I’d love to get the 1994 because that’s what I grew up with but chose to, stupidly, give it away to an acquaintance. Thanks for the post again and hope you have a great day xx

  21. Alicia says:

    This was by far my favorite book as a child. I had the 1987 print and it was read to me until i could read it myself. I went to visit family over the summer one year and my parents sold it at a garage sale! I’ve been looking for it ever since.

    I have a used copy coming from Amazon already. If the picture is correct, it is the same copy I had as a child. I can’t wait to share it with my own children, especially The Fishing Stone (my favorite).

    Thank you so much for sharing this information!

  22. AJ Alexander says:

    Hey everyone,
    Don’t know if this thread is still alive, however I’ve been cleaning out the basement and recently came across this book which my wife had when she was a kid. It’s the Snow White cover (ISBN: 0863076580). She no longer wants it, thus I’ve put it up for auction on Ebay. However, I’m still unclear as to the value of this. Would anyone have any general idea as to what I could expect to get for it? Thanks!

  23. Timothy Cairns says:

    Looking of ISBN 0863076580 on Amazon and eBay UK gives lots of results for a book with the same title published by Horizon Book Promotions. Is this the same one as the Marshall Cavendish one?

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