Asian Tricksters retold by Cathy Spagnoli- reviewed by Mary Baldasaro
These tales are ideally suited to school, library and multicultural settings. Spagnoli's expert handling of the material allows even novice storytellers an opportunity to shine. The manageable length will add to their appeal for young audiences.
Each of the illustrators brings to the work detail that complements the narrative and provides additional cultural information, while striking a fine balance between text and artwork.
All of the books are softcover and in . full colour . A map of Asia inside the front cover highlights the featured country, while the back cover includes notes on the the author and illustrator, background information on the story and country of origin, and, where necessary, pronunciation guide
Kantjil and Tiger, A Tale from Indonesia illustrated by Fabricio Yanden Broeck. ISBN-7802-1474-9 32 P $5.85
In Indonesian and Malaysian folklore, Kantjil, the mouse deer, is a favourite trickster character, while the tiger is popularly regarded as a foolish beast, always outwitted by the smaller creatures.
Judge Rabbit Helps the Fish, A Tale from Cambodia illustrated by Kat Thacker. ISBN 0-7802-1476-5 32 P $5.85
Thao Kam, The Pebble Shooter, A Tale From Laos illustrated by Chi Chung. ISBN 0-7802-1480-3 32 P $5.85
Although this story, too, involves a trick, it is noteworthy because the physically challenged boy at the heart of the tale triumphs over adversity.
Oni Wa Soto, A Tale from Japan illustrated by Yoshi Miyake. ISBN 0-78021478-1 32 P $5.85
These books may be purchased singly, or as a set from The Wright Group, 19201 120th Avenue, NE, Bothell, Washington