A Ring of Tricksters : Animal Tales from America, the West Indies, And Africa

by Virginia Hamilton

Hardcover, 1997



Local notes

398.2 Ham



Blue Sky Press (1997), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 112 pages


Twelve trickster tales that show the migration of African culture to America via the West Indies.

Physical description

112 p.; 12.3 inches


0590473743 / 9780590473743



User reviews

LibraryThing member renee.sutter
This is a collection of stories about tricksters from many different cultures like America, Africa, and the West Indies. Many of these stories have character I have seen in other myths like Anansi the spider and Bruh Rabbit. The illustrations are amazing. This would be a fun one to read in the classroom when talking about myths.… (more)
LibraryThing member daisycisneros
Characters: Bruh Rabbit, Anansi Spider, The Turtle. The opponents Alligator, Elephant and the Leopard.
Setting: The American South, Africa and the West Indies
Theme: African-American Folktales, trickster tales, tales from the West Indies and West Africa and slave trade.

Genre: Trickster tales from southern states and Juvenile literature.
Summary: This is a collection of eleven trickster tales that show the migration of the African culture to the southern states of the United States of American who traveled through the West Indies. The rabbit, the turtle and the spider were born small so they had to use smart tricks to survive among bigger and stronger animals like the alligators, elephants and leopards.
Golden quote: “By the way, ma’am, where might Mister Leopard be today?” asked Old Mister Turtle. “Out hunting, him,” says the missus. “You haven’t seen him?” “No, ma’am,” Turtle replied. So sorry he’s away far. Because surely if he be here, I’d go ride him like a horse.” “Oh, no!” says the missus, shocked. “You couldn’t ride’ um Mister Leopard like a horse!”

Audience: Children ages 5 to adult Curriculum ties: In geography students are able to make a map of the American South and trace the location of the tales. History students can compare and contrast trickster tales from the American South with Native American Trickster tales. They can look for similarities and differences from both groups, great to understand the settlements of African Americans in the new continent.

Personal response: This collection of trickster tales is great because young readers the opportunity to see how oral stories got passed down generations and also how slave trade played a key role in the development of American History. It also helps children understand how to use their wit to out smart others.
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(9 ratings; 4)
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