Lion and the Ostrich Chicks and Other African Folk Tales

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 1-6 Bryan presents lively, tellable stories about animal and human characters. He includes extensive dialogue and numerous songs from four previously published collections of the folklore of the Masai, Bushmen, and Hausa, and from Angola. The stories give no evidence of their African origin, which is a result of three of the sources that Bryan used being decontextualized, which was typical of African folklore collections at the turn of the century. The morals of these stories are universal in application. Bryan's lively illustrations focus on animals engaged in the action taking place in the stories, but without any context, thus reinforcing the generic content of the stories. The illustrations of people and houses from the stories about the Bushmen (who live in southern Africa) and Hausa (who live in northern Nigeria) are similar and misrepresent both the physical features of the people and their cultures. Although the stories can be enjoyed as narratives when read or told aloud, the collection reinforces the concept that Africa is a country, rather than a diverse continent with distinctively different cultures. The illustrations for most of Verna Aardema's recent retellings of African folklore more authentically represent distinctive features of the African cultures in which the narratives are told. Nancy J. Schmidt, Indiana University Library, Bloomington
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780689313110
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 4/1/1989
  • Pages: 96
  • Age range: 7 - 11 Years

Meet the Author

Ashley Bryan grew up to the sound of his mother singing from morning to night, and he has shared the joy of song with children ever since. A beloved illustrator, he has been the recipient of the Coretta Scott King—Virginia Hamilton Lifetime Achievement Award and the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award; he has also been a May Hill Arbuthnot lecturer, a Coretta Scott King Award winner, and the recipient of countless other awards and recognitions. He lives in Islesford, one of the Cranberry Isles off the coast of Maine, where the sea’s energy sustains his own.

Ashley Bryan grew up to the sound of his mother singing from morning to night, and he has shared the joy of song with children ever since. A beloved illustrator, he has been the recipient of the Coretta Scott King—Virginia Hamilton Lifetime Achievement Award and the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award; he has also been a May Hill Arbuthnot lecturer, a Coretta Scott King Award winner, and the recipient of countless other awards and recognitions. He lives in Islesford, one of the Cranberry Isles off the coast of Maine, where the sea’s energy sustains his own.

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