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Anansi and the Moss-Covered Rock Paperback – January 1, 1988
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From School Library Journal
Grade 1-4 Anansi the Spider happens upon an unusual stone that magically puts him to sleep for an hour. The master trickster decides to use the rock to get the food stores from the rest of the local residents. Each animal is taken in turn to the strange moss-covered rock, says the magic phrase, and promptly falls asleep to have its food pilfered by Anansi. All the while, however, Little Bush Deer silently watches. Ultimately, it is small and shy Deer who outwits Anansi and returns the food to its rightful owners. Although no specific source is given, Kimmel has retold a West African tale (said to be known in Caribbean culture). The text is rhythmic, nicely building suspense to the inevitable conclusion. Stevens' complementary, colorful illustrations add detail, humor, and movement to the text. Here, Anansi is portrayed as a large eight-legged arachnid; his expression is in his motion. The other animals are almost realistic, although with facial expressions that are characteristic of the artist's work. This new picture book Anansi tale will be welcomed by all trickster fans. Maria B. Salvadore, District of Columbia Public Library
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
Janet Stevens received her B.F.A. from the University of Colorado. She has illustrated and adapted The Town Mouse and The Country Mouse, The Tortoise and the Hare, and several Hans Christian Andersen tales. She has also illustrated The Big Bunny and the Easter Eggs and other popular books. She lives in Boulder, Colorado, with her husband and two children.
Eric A. Kimmel is Professor of Education at Portland State University and a past president of the Oregon Reading Association. The author of a number of picture books, he is a regular contributor to the children's magazine Cricket, as well as a storyteller. For years he has told Anansi and the Moss-Covered Rock to enthusiastic audiences. Originally a West African tale, the moss-covered rock story is familiar in Caribbearn culture, where Anansi is a beloved folklore character. Sometimes, he assumes the form of a man; other times, he is depicted as a spider. Dr. Kimmel and his wife live in Portland, Oreland.
Top customer reviews
It's brilliant how the animals maintain a taste of realism while also sporting some recognizable human qualities too--like sitting in porch chairs and rocking chairs! This is a refreshing approach, and the illustrations are so fun! A joy to look at! You just have to laugh at a fainting hippo and a dejected lion.
The story is well told too. We all wait for Anansi to be outwitted by Little Bush Deer after his reign of trickery and food collecting!
Readers who enjoy this book may also enjoy "Anansi and the Magic Stick," which is created by the same author / illustrator pair: Eric A. Kimmel and Janet Stevens. For readers who like an Anansi that is a spider that has a human face, check out Verna Aardema's "Anansi Does the Impossible."
This book makes a great addition to the family and / or school library.