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Paperback Anansi the Spider: A Tale from the Ashanti Book

ISBN: 0590473409

ISBN13: 9780590473408

Anansi the Spider: A Tale from the Ashanti

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Very Good

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Book Overview

Anansi the Spider is one of the great folk heroes of the world. He is a rogue, a mischief maker, and a wise, lovable creature who triumphs over larger foes. In this traditional Ashanti tale, Anansi sets out on a long, difficult journey. Threatened by Fish and Falcon, he is saved from terrible fates by his sons. But which of his sons should Anansi reward? Calling upon Nyame, the God of All Things, Anansi solves his predicament in a touching and highly...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Anansi Makes Me Laugh...

I am a big fan of the Anansi tales, and the spider's adventures are delightful as well as thought-provoking. For edutainment (educational entertainment) and discussion, I include them in my high school / college level introduction to mythology / humanities survey courses. All ages can enjoy a clever trickster hero who possesses many human qualities, the good and bad--who makes us think about our own deeds and behavior. In Anansi The Spider: A Tale from the Ashanti, Gerald McDermott retells an Anansi story with warmth, cultural sensitivity, and bright, attention-seizing illustrations. Among the children's books about Anansi, McDermott's efforts stand in a unique place because the text is used sparingly and with great effect, conveying important events only and not burying key ideas in lavish descriptions or dialogues. In this book, the elaborate, geometric illustrations paint the "descriptions" that the text omits. Features that I like... The map in the opening that shows the continent of Africa and the country of Ghana. (I'm always happy to see a bit of geography dropped into stories, especially those designed for children.) The Prologue, which describes the importance of folklore, mythology, and legends. I especially appreciate this statement: "Folklore prepares man for adult life. It places him within his culture." Rather than beginning the story with the familiar "Once upon a time...," the author uses "Time was..." which is cool! :) Each of the spider sons in the story is unique in design, appearance, and talent, which makes him easy (and fun) to identify as the tale unfolds. The six sons are See Trouble, Road Builder, River Drinker, Game Skinner, Stone Thrower, and Cushions. The character of Anansi is rendered with an expressive personality and face while his sons' faces are not shown--just their designs, bodies, and talents. Anansi's face changes emotions based on his experiences, and this would be an excellent teaching element for very young children upon hearing / seeing the story. Themes & Talking Points the book offers: Counting, colors, shapes, animals, teamwork, family, intro to Africa [Very Young Children] Reading; Cause & Effect; Critical Thinking & Response; African Culture. How does Anansi get into and out of trouble? // Each spider is an individual with a specific skill or trait; each spider has a place in the family. What does this suggest about the culture of the Ashanti? // The rescue of Anansi is really a team effort by the sons, but who should get the reward? Does the ending solve this problem? [For children 5-12] Reading & Design; Symbolism; Critical Analysis; Author Intent; Culture. Why did the author / illustrator choose not to show the faces of the six sons in the story? How does this choice affect the story? How does Anansi's face tell his story? What is the relationship between a son's name and his unique design? In what instances is Anansi's face NOT shown and why? What lessons are taught in this ta

Vibrant, vivid illustration and a wonderful tale

The Anansi stories have been handed down through generations of Ashanti culture. This book is a wonderful, vibrant and vivid story for children of all ages. Born in Ghana I left at aged 3, leaving much of the Ghanaian culture behind. At aged 30 I can still remember a song about Anansi the spider, the only remnants left of my native tongue. I was given the Anansi book as a child, it captivated me, I read it over and over again, and it provided a connection to my past. At 16, I spent hours crafting a cushion embroidered an illustration from the book that was a childhood favorite. Sadly, the book was lost and I never thought I could get it again. Now, some 14 years since I last saw the book I can still visualize the pictures and hear the wonderful tale of Anansi the spider, his sons and the moon. I have just bought two copies, one for my niece and one for my two year old daughter. I absolutely cannot wait to read them again and again and pass this memorable story to a new generation.

We love Anansi!

My 18 month old son loves the artwork in this book. There is a lot to talk about on each page. For the first time it seems that my son is following the story and not just dealing with one page at a time. He waits eagerly for the page when Anansi is swallowed by a fish (don't worry it is not violent in any way!) Since there are 6 spider sons there are lots of opportunities for counting. My 18 month old can now count to 6.

A culturally rich story that captures the eye with it's art.

This story captured the attention of 18 pre-schools within a few seconds! Personally, I enjoyed this story, the unique characters and the "trickster" Anansi. The children loved acting out a skit about the 6 sons of Anansi by taping a "spider logo" to their shirt and acting out "cushion", see trouble" and the other brothers. I especially enjoy how McDermott exposes children to the beliefs of other cultures.

An entertaining and beautifully-illustrated children's book

My knowledge of things African was limited as a child, so I have made a particular effort to expose my daughter to this part of the world. As I have done this, I have discovered that the themes which have made Western children's stories popular through the centuries are also present in African folk tales. This fact is further confirmed by this book. It is a tale of a family of spider children who work together to get their father out of a jam. Not only is the story entertaining and full of lessons, but the illustrations are gorgeous. They are as one would imagine an African child must dream: vivid colors and broad strokes which my three-year-old even thought were particularly "pretty." I highly recommend this book as an addition to any three-eight-year-old's library.

Anansi the Spider: A Tale from the Ashanti (An Owlet Book) Mentions in Our Blog

Anansi the Spider: A Tale from the Ashanti (An Owlet Book) in Sold Viewed Playful New: Tricksters
Sold Viewed Playful New: Tricksters
Published by Terry Fleming • April 25, 2022
Welcome to Sold, Viewed, Playful, New, where we spotlight popular/fascinating/favorite items in four distinct categories. Sold, for used books. Viewed, for DVDs or Blu-rays. Playful, for board, card, or video games, and New, for new books. April and all its foolishness has us exploring the Fool, or Trickster, archetype among books, games, cartoons, and more.
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