The uneven quality of the storytelling in this decoratively illustrated collection, as well as the stories chosen, make it more of a mixed bag than a treasure. There are traditional Western entries--e.g., the story of Moses in Egypt, the tale of twins Romulus and Remus, and a segment about Ulysses's encounter with the sirens. Also appearing are an African tale about the sparrow and the hen, a story from India explaining how a little bird took vengeance against an elephant, a Japanese creation tale, and stories from Egyptian mythology. Ten stories is not enough to string around the entire world, especially with half of the stories from Greece, Egypt, or Rome. Most of the retellings are flat and rushed, with the longer epochs compacted into bare synopses.