Gift Guide

More Ready-to-Tell Tales from Around the World


When David Holt and Bill Mooney collaborated on their original Ready-to-Tell Tales in 1994, they knew they had a tiger by the tail—a how-to book for all those who have watched a master storyteller and wondered, "How do they do that?"

School Library Journal recognized it as "an extraordinary deserves a place on the shelf beside other storytelling classics." It was "highly recommended" by Booklist and won a truckload of awards and...

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When David Holt and Bill Mooney collaborated on their original Ready-to-Tell Tales in 1994, they knew they had a tiger by the tail—a how-to book for all those who have watched a master storyteller and wondered, "How do they do that?"

School Library Journal recognized it as "an extraordinary deserves a place on the shelf beside other storytelling classics." It was "highly recommended" by Booklist and won a truckload of awards and citations.

Now Holt and Mooney present a new collection with some enhanced features. Forty-four of the finest storytellers performing today present stories that anyone can tell—adapted for oral performance and enhanced with telling tips, information about the stories, and recommended audiences and age levels. The stories come from a wide array of cultures and are appropriate for a wide array of occasions. They range in tone from Doc McConnell's tall tale of "The Talking Dog" to Duncan Williamson's haunting "Mary and the Seal," from Dovie Thomason's comical Cherokee pourquoi story to Jay Stailey's urban retelling of Chicken Little, from Derek Burrows' participatory Bahamian riff to Barbara McBride-Smith's gleeful if gross coda to an old Texas armadillo tale.

The stories come from Japan,Senegal, Sweden, the Bahamas, Haiti, China, Mexico, Portugal, Kenya, Tanzania, and the Jewish, Kiowa, Cajun, Iroquois, and African-American traditions.

A multicultural collection of traditional tales contributed by experienced storytellers, with tips for telling the stories.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
These forty-five stories are gifts from nationally and internationally renowned storytellers, and they are, indeed, ready for telling. Tales from Africa, Asia, Europe, North American and South America are indexed by their cultural sources. Here the reader will discover funny, startling, sad, ghostly, tall, thought-provoking and pourquoi tales. Suitable age ranges are stated with the tale and also provided in an index. Each teller provides tips on telling, which will be very useful for beginning and seasoned tellers alike. This highlights not only a variety of stories, but also the variety of ways to tell tales. The storytellers often encourage the reader to develop his/her own style. Elementary, Middle School and High School teachers should add this treasure trove to their classrooms. As good as it is for children, it is also a good source of material for adult audiences. 2000, August House, and $14.95. Ages Adult. Reviewer: Sharon Salluzzo
David Holt and Bill Mooney have done it again! Following their successful Ready-to-Tell Tales, these editors (who are also storytellers) have compiled this collection of stories gathered from professional storytellers around the world with the focus on multicultural tales. These tales, contributed by such notable storytellers as Margaret Read MacDonald, Dovie Thomason, Len Cabral, Richard Walker and Duncan Williamson, are proclaimed to be "sure-fire" hits guaranteed to please an audience. The stories are organized into several sections: Comic Tales, Wise Fools, Trickster Tales, Tall Tales, How and Why Tales, Served With a Twist, Codes of Conduct, Wheel of Fortune, Family and Community, and a Benediction. Before each tale, a recommended audience level is listed along with background to the story, and information about the storyteller contributing the tale is included. Following each story is "A Word from the Wise," providing tips for the reader to use when telling the story. The tales are followed by an index of stories by cultural source and by recommended audience. Although many of the stories are best for younger children and elementary school children, a good selection of stories for middle school and high school students are also included. In particular, "The Piper's Revenge," about a piper who must steal a dead man's feet for his boots; "The Kiss of Evil," in which a man seeking treasure loses everything; and "Little Frog and Centipede," in which Little Frog interrupts Centipede so many times that he loses a valuable lesson, are tales that teens should enjoy. The trickster tales and those tales "served with a twist" are most clever and thought provoking and are likely to bewhere the teen favorites will be found. This title belongs in any professional collection that values storytelling, and would serve as a great resource for teens learning to tell stories. A variety of funny, eerie, and purposeful multicultural tales can be found in this handbook for storytellers. KLIATT Codes: SA—Recommended for senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2000, August House, 256p, illus, index, 23cm, 00-032787, $14.95. Ages 16 to adult. Reviewer: Ginger Armstrong; Principal Lib. Assoc., Chesterfield Cty P.L., Chesterfield, VA January 2001 (Vol. 35 No. 1)
School Library Journal
Gr 4 Up-As in Ready-to-Tell Tales (August House, 1994), Holt and Mooney have solicited favorite selections from their fellow professional storytellers, including Margaret Read MacDonald, Len Cabral, and Jon Spelman. According to the introduction, each one of these 45 pieces has been "honed by countless tellings" and is sure to grab listeners right from the start. The editors urge readers to acknowledge the contributors of the tales they choose to tell and to develop their own style when performing them. The storyteller introduces each offering with notes about its history and provenance, any adaptations that may have been made to it, and the particular audience that will enjoy it. A profile of the contributor, a black-and-white photo, and performance tips accompany each selection. Folktales, tall tales, original tales, and tales adapted from literary sources are all included. Indexes provide access by country of origin and by age level. This book will be of most use to adults and older kids who tell stories, but may also interest those who just enjoy reading a good yarn.-Sally Bates Goodroe, Harris County Public Library, Houston, TX Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780874835830
  • Publisher: August House Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 12/28/2005
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 705,689
  • Lexile: 930L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.08 (h) x 0.74 (d)

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