Anansi Goes Fishing Hardcover – Mar 1 1992
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From School Library Journal
Kindergarten-Grade 2-- In a companion volume to Anansi and the Moss Covered Rock (Holiday, 1990), Kimmel and Stevens team up again to extend the humor of a trickster tale from Africa. Anansi joins Turtle on a fishing excursion, intending to con him out of all the fish. Anansi's stubborn selfishness proves to be his undoing day after day until, at last, he realizes the folly of his ways because he has been tricked into doing all the work and is still hungry. Kimmel has adapted Joyce Cooper Arkhurst's sparer version found in The Adventures of Spider , (Little, 1964; o.p.) transforming the fisherman into a turtle and judiciously exercising his storyteller's prerogative to add humorous details and lively dialogue that follows a repetitive pattern. Although the ending has been changed substantially from the original source, it is nonetheless satisfying and suits this variation of the tale. Stevens's watercolor illustrations feature bright colors and bold black outlines and range from broad humor to subtle slyness. She, too, has taken liberties in her interpretation by affording Turtle human trappings and consistently portraying Anansi as an unadorned spider. Together, the text and art combine in a fresh new version that is a fine choice for oral presentation or for independent reading. --Starr LaTronica, North Berkeley Library, CA
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Kirkus Reviews
In what the author describes on the jacket as ``a variation of a [West African] tale found in Joyce Cooper Arkhurst's The Adventures of Spider,'' the spider trickster is roundly tricked by his friend Turtle. Turtle agrees to teach Anansi to fish, describing the first step, netmaking, as hard work they can share: ``One of us can work while the other gets tired.'' Lazy Anansi is quick to choose work, while Turtle lounges peacefully in the chair he has brought, ``getting very tired.'' So it goes until a fish is finally caught and consumed by Turtle: ``One of us should eat while the other gets full.'' Finally catching on, the hungry Anansi goes to Warthog for justice but gets no sympathy--his reputation is known, and his story, though true, is outrageously implausible. At least he's learned to weave a web. Kimmel's funny, accessible telling is nicely complemented in Stevens's art, depicting the lively events in bold lines and assertive colors and adding amusing details like Turtle's accumulating beach-style paraphernalia--including a loudly flowered shirt and a boombox. Sure to delight the picture book crowd. (Folklore/Picture book. 4-10) -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.See all Product Description
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The first time we found this book was in a library, and it was a 'book on tape' set. If you can find this, we recommend it, too, as the reader is very funny! :)
In this book, Anansi wants a fish just like his friend the turtle has just caught. And what fun it is to see the logic turtle uses to get Anansi to do all the work while turtle 'gets tired'! We love this book! It is good clean fun! :)
Unfortunately, everybody knows what sort of a person Anansi is, and Turtle tricks him first. Well, truth be told, it's pretty funny to see how Anansi manages to outwit himself. Sure, Turtle facilitates it, but this is a prime example of how being lazy doesn't work if you don't also think. (And if you want to go deeper, the end of the story shows how if you constantly trick people, nobody believes you when you're the wronged party.)
Really funny book, and there's probably a moral in there somewhere.
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