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Beloved storyteller and creator Ashley Bryan reveals the vibrant spirit of found objects in this magnificent treasury of poetry and puppets. Little Cranberry Island. It’s a small island, with fewer than a hundred inhabitants, but it’s got more than its share of treasures—including the magnificent Ashley Bryan himself, a world-renowned storyteller and author of such classics as All Night, All Day and Beautiful Blackbird. Daily, for decades, Ashley has walked up and down the beach, stopping to pick up sea glass, weathered bones, a tangle of fishing net, an empty bottle, a doorknob. Treasure. And then, with glue and thread and paint and a sprinkling of African folklore, Ashley breathes new life into these materials. Others might consider it beach junk, but Ashley sees worlds of possibilities. Ashley Bryan’s two-foot-tall hand puppets swell with personality and beauty, and in this majestic collection they make their literary debut, each with a poem that tells of their creation and further enlivens their spirit.
An introduction to the life and career of the writer and artist Ashley Bryan, a three-time winner of the Coretta Scott King Award.
This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine. Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine. With a kaleidoscope of color and cut paper, Hans Christian Anderson Award nominee and two-time Coretta Scott King Award winner Ashley Bryan celebrates three favorite spirituals: "This Little Light of Mine," "Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In," and "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands." The power of these beloved songs simply emanates through his joyous interpretations. Come, sing, and celebrate!
Come gather round, young and old, and hear these stories from Africa, retold and illustrated by the incomparable Ashley Bryan. The fourteen stories in this collection are some of his favorites, previously published in The Ox of the Wonderful Horns; Beat the Story-Drum, Pum-Pum (Coretta Scott King Award for Illustration); and Lion and the Ostrich Chicks (Coretta Scott King Honor Book). Retold with rich, musical narration, and illustrated with Mr. Bryan's distinctive paintings, these tales are full of fun and magic and a few lessons to be learned. They are tales of tricksters, chieftains, and both wise and foolish creatures. You will learn why Frog and Snake never play together, or why Bush Cow and Elephant are bad friends, or of the problems that a husband has because he likes to count spoonfuls. Although the stories come from many parts of Africa, they are full of the universal human spirit, to be shared and treasured for every generation, uh-huh.
Black is beautiful, uh-huh! Long ago, Blackbird was voted the most beautiful bird in the forest. The other birds, who were colored red, yellow, blue, and green, were so envious that they begged Blackbird to paint their feathers with a touch of black so they could be beautiful too. Although Black-bird warns them that true beauty comes from within, the other birds persist and soon each is given a ring of black around their neck or a dot of black on their wings -- markings that detail birds to this very day. Coretta Scott King Award-winner Ashley Bryan's adaptation of a tale from the Ila-speaking people of Zambia reso-nates both with rhythm and the tale's universal meanings -- appreciating one's heritage and discovering the beauty within. His cut-paper artwork is a joy.
A small boy with a very long name is challenged by his grandmother to find out her real name.
Ashley Bryan says, "I have subtitled this collection A Child's First Book of African-American Spirituals. It could really be called Spirituals for the Young and ALL! And so it could be, for the songs it presents can be enjoyed by people of every age and every level of musical skill. Mr. Bryan goes on to say, "Wherever I travel, people sing these songs. Often they do not know that they are singing spirituals. They associate them with their churches, schools, camps, or clubs and are surprised when told that they are singing spirituals. "Almost a thousand of these songs have been collected since the end of the Civil War. They are unique in the song literature of the world and are considered America's most distinctive contribution to world music." Of the thousand African-American spirituals that are known, Mr. Bryan has here chosen twenty, among them some of the best known and best loved, including the title song, "All Night, All Day," and such others as "This Little Light of Mine,""When the Saints Go Marching In," and "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands." For each, David Manning Thomas has created an interesting piano accompaniment in support of the melody and has indicated guitar chords. Best of all, full-color pictures capture the spirit and essence of many of the songs to make this a book that can both be used as a fine songbook and treasured for its beauty; for the warmth, liveliness, and inspirational depth of its illustrations.

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