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The Storytellers Hardcover – April 27, 1998


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Hardcover, April 27, 1998
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 and up
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (April 27, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0688151787
  • ISBN-13: 978-0688151782
  • Product Dimensions: 11.4 x 9.6 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,887,286 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Lewin (Market!) once again demonstrates his remarkable gift for bringing faraway locales to life for young readers, even if this tale of Abdul and his storyteller-grandfather, who head to work on the outskirts of an ancient Moroccan city, falls flat. Sun-tinged watercolor scenes of Fez bustle with the activity of the souk, or marketplace: muleteers guiding mules loaded down with brass bowls and crates holding TV sets, a wool-dyer twisting long, bright skeins, a wizened old falconer holding his pink-hooded peregrine, leather-dyers drying the dyed skins on rooftops, weavers, rug merchants and other intriguing sights. Lewin builds suspense by hinting at the work that lies ahead for his two protagonists?Abdul carries a cage with a single white pigeon and Grandfather carries a blanket. But when they at last arrive at the city gates, wait for the crowd to gather, and release the pigeon who carries a story back from the sky for Grandfather to tell, readers never get to hear it. Lewin tells only the beginning and end of the tale, and readers may well feel cheated. Unfortunately, the lovely panoramas can't make up for the book's abrupt ending. Ages 5-up.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 4?The culture of Morocco comes to life in this tribute to the magic of storytelling. Abdul and his grandfather wend their way through the streets of the old city of Fez, passing the souks of the various trades as they go. While enjoying the sights, smells, and sounds of the marketplace, Abdul is convinced that the work that he and his grandfather do is the most gratifying of all. When his grandfather begins to weave magical tales, mesmerizing his audience, Abdul's feelings are confirmed. With the same intensity found in Peppe the Lamplighter (Lothrop, 1993), Lewin has created striking acrylic paintings that capture the colors and the sights of Fez, which has changed little over the past thousand years. The realistic paintings are wonderfully textured, and the faces of the people Abdul meets are particularly well drawn, making the double-page illustrations a perfect complement to this tale of a gifted storyteller whose words touch the hearts of his listeners. The story flows easily, using a few Arabic terms (italicized and explained either in the accompanying glossary or in context) to enhance the flavor of the tale. The strong relationship between Abdul and his grandfather will help readers identify with the characters, despite the exotic setting. A rather quiet story, Lewin's tale will, nonetheless, captivate young listeners, drawing them in and holding their attention. Most importantly, it will help to validate storytelling as an art form that transcends differences in culture and age. A gem for storytime read-alouds.?Nancy Menaldi-Scanlan, LaSalle Academy, Providence, RI
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Catherine S. Vodrey on August 25, 2002
Format: Library Binding
Ted Lewin's "Storytellers" is just another in a long line of Lewin miracles. I am always so taken with his storytelling skills, not to mention the astonishing illustrations he does.
This is the tale of Abdul and his grandfather, Moroccans who spend their time sitting just outside the town of Fez, entertaining crowds with stories. As they walk from home to their destination near the town gate, Abdul observes other citizens hard at work and he consistently notes that he and his grandfather have much better jobs than the poor folks who are either tanning leather or beating metal into bowls or weaving rugs. They arrive, finally, are seated, and Abdul tosses a bird into the air--his grandfather's cue to launch into a magical story with the Arab version of "Once upon a time" (it translates to "There was, or there was not"--what a charming way to launch into a story!).
Lewin captures all the heat, the saturated color, the movement, and the light of Morocco in these amazingly detailed watercolors. The book is a fortuitous dovetailing of excellent, absorbing story and a feast for the eyes. Highly recommended to adults and children alike!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jedidiah Palosaari VINE VOICE on April 15, 2002
Format: Library Binding
This is designed to be read to very young children, who will enjoy investigating all the illustrations of life in Fez. Every age will get to see the vision of life in al maghreb, Morocco, in ways they have never seen before, beginning with the call of the mu'ezzin which you can almost hear. I loved how Abdul was not tagging along with his grandfather, on "Bring the Grandkid to work today"- he was involved as part of the work of his Grandfather, on a level that a child could complete, and integral to that work. At the end Lewin includes the sad information of how few of the true storytellers are left. That is a shame. A good story is always better than the best TV show. It creates imagination.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By AWAIR Reviews on June 3, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This gentle tale with beautiful illustrations tells the story of a young boy and his grandfather who carry on the tradition of storytelling in the market place in Fez, Morocco. A splendid book for showing present day Morocco to young people!

Teachers/Librarians: Kindergarten to 7th grade!
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By Judith Dietrichson on September 7, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Shows how stories are passed down from families and the importance of keeping the tradition alive. Read this to my kids and then we wrote our own story.
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By r sikorski on August 23, 2014
Format: Hardcover
Nice storybook, especially if you have some affection for Morocco
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