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Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters Big Book (Reading Rainbow Book) Paperback – October 22, 1993
The Battle of the Vegetables
Leeks who believe a cow is one of Santa’s reindeer, carrots who accept an invitation to a party given by rabbits, and a leek and carrot couple whose romance precipitates total vegetable warfare are the hapless protagonists in these satiric, snarky stories. Hardcover
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From School Library Journal
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
From the Back Cover
Mufaro has two beautiful daughters. Nyasha is kind and considerate, but Manyara is selfish and spoiled. When the king decides to choose a bride from among "The Most Worthy and Beautiful Daughters in the Land," both Mufaro's girls travel to the capital city. But only one can be chosen to marry the king.Perfect for introducing variants to the Cinderella story as well as the history, culture, and geography of the African nation of Zimbabwe.
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Top Customer Reviews
In John Steptoe's version, inspired by an African folktale, the two sisters are both beautiful, but the beauty of one, Manyara, is only external. Her sister, Nyasha, the "Cinderella" character is beautiful inside and out. And her goodness doesn't consist just of doing what she's told to do. She's kind to all creatures, even Manyara. Furthermore, the king chooses her to be his queen not because of her beauty, but because he has secretly seen her her kindness and generosity (and her sister's meaness) in action. He chooses a good soul, not just a beautiful face. This version has all the elements that make Cinderella a classic, but ethically it's far, far better.
And as if that weren't enough, the illustrations in this book are sheer magic. More than any book we've read, this one has inspired in my daughter a fascination with Africa. The details of Steptoe's paintings, drawn from the plants, animals and architecture of Zimbabwe, are glorious. Everytime we read the book, my daughter and I talk about new things we notice about the pictures. I can't think of a single children's book I like better than this one.
Once there was a man with two beautiful daughters. Both were equal in loveliness, but different in temperament. While Nyasha was kind and good, Manyara was vain and cruel. When the king announces that he would like to meet these two girls and decide, between the two of them, which one he shall wed, the sly Manyara does her darndest to become queen and make her sister her servant.
The tale is vaguely disturbing in all the right ways. When Manyara sets out to get a jump on the king's affections by reaching the palace first, she comes across a series of odd sequences. A boy (with ears Spock himself would envy) is denied food, laughing trees are laughed back at, and a man with his head under his arm is ignored callously. The moral of the story is, of course, that to be good and kind is far better than to be cold and mean. Steptoe's illustrations lift this tale from being merely good to extraordinary. There is a realism to the characters that leaves the reader with little doubt that they were fashioned on real people. Steptoe has likewise stayed faithful to the land of Zimbabwe, where this tale is set. He has been inspired by everything from the architecture to the flora and fauna. But what I liked best was the clothing. The garments and jewelry of this story encase the characters, making each person practically a member of royalty.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I have read this book when my children were very small. Now they have daughters and I wanted to share this story with them. Read morePublished 1 month ago by daphne sims
The tale is more than 120 years old. It is similar to hundreds of other tales with variations. The art work is among the best and is also interesting . Read morePublished 2 months ago by Persop
I l Ioved this episode of reading rainbow. SO happy to read the actual book to my daughterPublished 3 months ago by Kindle Customer
Such a great book and lesson!! Use it for classroom guidance on kindness and empathy.Published 4 months ago by Adrian Paschal