THE DANCING GRANNY AND OTHER AFRICAN FOLK TALES by Ashley  Bryan

THE DANCING GRANNY AND OTHER AFRICAN FOLK TALES

KIRKUS REVIEW

According to an appended note, this is retold from a collection of folklore of the Antilles, but it would be hard to place as it turns up here--with a strutting young man named Spider Ananse playing opposite Granny; a proper melting pot of crops which he tricks her out of; and his comparison of the dancing Granny to, of all things, a tumbleweed. Then there's the discrepancy between the "old lady" of the story and the firm-fleshed, spectacularly limber woman seen here stomping and somersaulting through the pages. As for the song, it's Spider's "Shake it to the East,/Shake it to the West,/Shake it to the very one/That you love the best" which inspires Granny to dance off so far that he can steal her vegetables. At last Granny gets hers back by grabbing Spider and making him dance along--a fitting comeback but no boon, as pictured, to Granny's spontaneous leaping about. "And if Spider's still singing then they're still dancing"--but to what beat is anyone's guess.
Pub Date: March 9th, 1977
ISBN: 1559940468
Publisher: Atheneum
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1st, 1977




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