Scheherazade's Cat: And Other Fables from Around the World

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
These nine skillfully rendered tales are none the worse for their New Age mindset. The Zerners, a mother and daughter team, bring sensitivity without sanctimony to their storytelling. ``The Turquoise Sandals,'' a flavorful Egyptian story which the authors claim to be a model for Cinderella puts its European cousin to sexist shame; its heroine is a reader who prefers freedom to adoration, and her beauty is ``only the outer reflection of her even more beautiful inner qualities.'' A Native American yarn, ``Sister Bear,'' celebrates the wisdom and special powers of a girl who eschews ``the traditional paths.'' Other tales are culled from Peru, South Africa, Hawaii and China. Each entry is bordered in a different intricate and rich tapestry border, and illustrated by a single full-page collage painting, exotic in texture and multi-ethnic in imagery. All ages. (Mar.)
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6-A collection of nine fables that are as exotic as the handwoven tapestries that illustrate them. The title story is a retelling of the Thousand and One Nights tale, in which Scheherazade's cat devises the storytelling scheme that saves her mistress's life. The remaining folktales are from Asia, Africa, and North and South America. Strong heroines appear throughout. In a version of the Egyptian Cinderella, ``The Turquoise Sandals,'' Rhodopis is a knowledge-hungry young woman who longs to be valued for her soul and intelligence rather than for her beauty. Children who step to a different drummer will relate to ``The Chameleon'' from Zaire. Other than the country of origin, no sources are provided. In the Native-American tale, ``Sister Bear,'' the people are referred to as ``Indians'' rather than by a tribal name. Each fable is illustrated with an intriguing, tapestry-and-collage vignette whose colors and motifs reflect the appropriate culture. A border with the same motifs decorates each page. Most of these stories have not been in print for many years, and other extant versions are bland. The Zerners' retellings are full of magic, although at times they are a bit heavy-handed with the moral.-Cheri Estes, Dorchester Road Regional Library, Charleston, SC
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780804818070
  • Publisher: Tuttle Publishing
  • Publication date: 10/15/1993
  • Pages: 64
  • Product dimensions: 8.85 (w) x 11.32 (h) x 0.66 (d)

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