All three "New York Times" bestselling fables from the Morrisons are now available in this single volume. Told with vibrant language and rich in rhythm, these three "Who's Got Game" empowering fables ("The Ant or the Grasshopper?", "The Lion or the Mouse?" and "Poppy or the Snake?") are now available in one handsome package. Pascal Lemaitre's ingenious illustrations add sophistication and spirit to the Morrisons' wry and defiantly ambiguous text make the "Who's Got Game?" series a favourite among both adults and children alike. "The Ant or The Grasshopper?" - "In our versions", says Toni Morrison, "the original stories are opened up and their moralistic endings re-imagined: The victim might not lose; the timid gets a chance to become strong; the fool can gain insight; the powerful may lose their grip. Anything can happen." "The Lion or the Mouse?" - The second in a series of six illustrated books retelling Aesop's fables in a hip and lively manner, this book is a deft and witty send-up of a culture that sucks up to anyone with the trappings of power. The "baddest in the land" cocky lion believes himself invincible until he gets a thorn stuck in his paw. Only a little mouse can help him, so the lion must indulge the mouse's greedy pride and lust for power. The mouse believes a lion's physique is all he needs to be king of the jungle, but finds it tough with only a squeak..."Poppy or the Snake?" - Poppy, a bearded Bayou-dwelling African American grandfather, regales a small boy with a tale that illuminates the issues arising when two creatures who are predisposed by culture to distrust one another act antithetically to that inclination. After Poppy accidentally runs over Snake, Snake talks Poppy into making amends by taking him home and then pretends to become Poppy's friend. However, a snake is, after all, snake, and eventually he acts on his nature and bites Poppy. For his part, Poppy is prepared, as any experienced swamp-dwelling human would be, for this likely possibility. All three books are also available as single editions from turnaround.
Toni Morrison reads three fables by Aesop that she has updated with her son, Slade. She gives each classic vitality and invites listeners to reexamine the moral found in the ending. In the first story, her hip-hop rhythm engages the listener in the story of Foxie G. (Grasshopper), a fun-loving, basketball-playing music fan, and his cohort ace, Kid A (Ant). The second story, a retelling of the lion rescued from a thorn by a small mouse, also rhymes, but Morrison gives its gentler rhythms a softer narration. The last story, Poppy or the Snake, tells of a grandfather who uses story to teach his grandson about paying attention. The story is rich in dialect as Morrison reads, especially in the character of the sass-mouthed snake. S.W. 2008 Grammy Nominee © AudioFile 2008, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine