When birds could talk & bats could sing : the adventures of Bruh Sparrow, Sis Wren, and their friends /
told by Virginia Hamilton ; illustrated by Barry Moser.
imprint
New York : Blue Sky Press, 1996.
description
63 p. : col. ill. ; 32 cm.
ISBN
0590473727
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
added author
imprint
New York : Blue Sky Press, 1996.
isbn
0590473727
abstract
A collection of stories, featuring sparrows, jays, buzzards, and bats, based on those African American tales originally written down by Martha Young on her father's plantation in Alabama after the Civil War.
catalogue key
1146127
A Look Inside
Awards
This item was nominated for the following awards:
Bluebonnet Award, USA, 1998 : Nominated
Young Hoosier Book Award, USA, 2001 : Nominated
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 1996-02-19:
With impressive aplomb, Hamilton follows the ambitious Her Stories with eight animal tales, reworked from 19th-century originals recorded by a slave owner's daughter. The stories are told in the cante fable tradition, with plenty of rhyming and singing, and an apparently artless ease ("Well, Miss Mockingbird reeled the song off as pretty as you please"). They must be read aloud. And they will be-the foibles, squabblings and occasional good deeds of Miss Bat, Bruh Buzzard and Sis Wren are our own. The self-deceived Miss Bat's two stories epitomize the book. She shakes loose all her beautiful feathers, then casts away all her songs, so that she will not be like any bird... and soon she most certainly is not. The reader will laugh, ruefully, at her pride, recognizing the moral ("For pride has a way of taking a fall every time") long before it appears as the satisfying conclusion. A wonderful complement to the front-porch voice of the stories, Moser's bright watercolors vibrate with dozens of birds confronting the reader in their best hats and bonnets, their faces alive with contentment, irritation or panic. These vaguely Disneyesque characters strut through formal full-page compositions and flutter, flounce and perch among the lines of type. It's unusually warm and down-to-earth work for Moser, some of his best, and helps to make this book, if not the most serious of Hamilton's collections, one of her most enjoyable and accessible. All ages. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Reviews
This item was reviewed in:
Horn Book Magazine,
Kirkus Reviews, February 1996
Publishers Weekly, February 1996
Kirkus Reviews, March 1996
Booklist, April 1996
School Library Journal, May 1996
Horn Book Guide, September 1996
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Authored Title
Each of these 8 tales from the American South deals with unpleasant, often foolish birds, and each ends with an important moral.
Authored Title
Each of these eight tales from the American South deals with unpleasant, often foolish birds, & each ends with an important moral.
Library of Congress Summary
A collection of stories, featuring sparrows, jays, buzzards, and bats, based on those African American tales originally written down by Martha Young on her father's plantation in Alabama after the Civil War.
Unpaid Annotation
The wonderful stories in this book are based on African American folktales told in the South during the plantation era. In the 1880s, journalist Martha Young collected these stories and created many of her own, publishing them in newspapers and then in several books of folktales. Full color.

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