Chinye: A West African Folk Tale

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
This is a Nigerian folktale that pits the goodness of Chinye against the greed of her stepmother and stepsister. When she is sent into the forest at night to fetch water, she is terrified of the predators, but they recognize her plight and render assistance. Suddenly an old woman appears and tells her to visit a nearby hut and to take only the most modest of the gourds. Chinye does as she is told and when the gourd is smashed open, riches pour forth. Her lazy stepsister is urged by her mother to visit the same hut, but ignoring the old woman's advice, she and her mother lose everything. The vibrant watercolor art fills each two-page spread and conveys the mood and motion.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-A retelling of a West African folktale. The heroine is Cinderella-like Chinye, who must labor day in and day out for her mean, conniving stepmother and her spoiled, lazy stepsister. One night she is sent into the dangerous forest for water, and her kindness and obedience lead her to great riches. The greedy stepmother then sends her daughter off to find the same treasure. Of course, the girl is unworthy of the task, and she and her mother lose everything. In the end, they leave the village. Chinye, in contrast, shares her new-found wealth with others and becomes a beloved and valuable citizen. This cautionary tale speaks of one's responsibility to the community, as well as of such values as obedience and humility. The watercolor paintings are full of drama and motion. Lush, sweeping foliage; intricately patterned cloth and pottery; and stirring facial expressions make the setting and characters come to life. A wonderful tale, beautifully told and illustrated.-Carol Jones Collins, Montclair Kimberley Academy, NJ
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780670851157
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 5/28/1994
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.84 (w) x 10.96 (h) x 0.37 (d)

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