The tales of Uncle Remus The adventures of Brer Rabbit

Julius Lester, 1939-2018

Book - 1987

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Location Call Number   Status
Children's Room j398.20973/Lester Checked In
Folk tales
New York : Dial Books c1987.
Physical Description
151 p. : ill
Main Author
Julius Lester, 1939-2018 (-)
Other Authors
Jerry Pinkney (illustrator)
  • How the animals came to earth
  • How Brer Fox and Brer Dog became enemies
  • "Hold'im down, Brer Fox"
  • Brer Rabbit comes to dinner
  • Brer Rabbit and the tar baby
  • Brer Rabbit gets even
  • Brer Rabbit and sister cow
  • Brer Turtle, Brer Rabbit, and Brer Fox
  • Brer Wolf tries to catch Brer Rabbit
  • Brer Rabbit finally gets beaten
  • Mr. Jack Sparrow meets his end
  • Brer Rabbit gets caught one more time
  • The death of Brer Wolf
  • Brer Fox and Brer Rabbit go hunting
  • Brer Rabbit tricks Brer Fox again
  • Brer Rabbit eats the butter
  • Brer Rabbit saves his meat
  • Brer Rabbit's children
  • The death of Brer Fox
  • Brer Rabbit and Brer Lion
  • Brer Rabbit takes care of Brer Tiger
  • Brer Lion meets the creature
  • The talking house
  • Brer Rabbit gets beaten again
  • Brer Rabbit tricks Brer Bear
  • The end of Brer Bear
  • Brer Fox gets tricked again
  • Brer Rabbit and the little girl
  • Brer Rabbit goes back to Mr. Man's garden
  • Brer Possum hears the singing
  • Brer Rabbit's riddle
  • The moon in the pond
  • Why Brer Bear has no tail
  • Wiley Wolf and Riley Rabbit
  • Brer Rabbit gets the money
  • The cradle didn't rock
  • Brer Rabbit to the rescue
  • The noise in the woods
  • Brer Rabbit gets the meat again
  • Brer Wolf gets in more trouble
  • Brer Rabbit tells on Brer Wolf
  • Brer Rabbit and the mosquitoes
  • How Brer Rabbit became a scary monster
  • Brer Fox, Brer Rabbit, and King Deer's daughter
  • Brer Rabbit breaks up the party
  • Brer Rabbit outwits Mr. Man
  • Brer Wolf, Brer Fox, and the little rabbits
  • Brer Rabbit's luck.
Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Lester's thoughtful preface to his retelling of the Joel Chandler Harris folktales elucidates the problems inherent in a project of this sort, which, unfortunately, this volume does not entirely resolve. Harris's stories are told in the Gullah dialect, often thought difficult by modern readers. In an attempt to preserve the tales, Lester has rewritten them in his own voice, often with references to ``things that are decidedly contemporary, like shopping malls.'' Lester calls such references characteristic of black storytelling and admits they may be jarring. But his retelling is uneven. For example, in the same story the narrator tells us formally, ``Early one morning, even before Sister Moon had put on her negligee, Brer Fox was up and moving around,'' and then says in dialect, ``Brer rabbit was sho' nuf' mad now.'' Harris's Brer Rabbit comes ``pacin' down de roadlippity-clippity, clippity-lippitydez as sassy ez a jay-bird'' while Lester's comes ``strutting along like he owned the world.'' This collection is important as a way of introducing readers to the Harris tales; it also stands alone as a volume of wonderfully funny folktales. For many purists, though, it will not replace the original stories. Pinkney's drawings, both black-and-white and color, nicely combine realistic detail and fancy. All ages. (March) Copyright 1987 Cahners Business Information.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

Gr 2 Up Recent retellings of Joel Chandler Harris' African-American folktales from former slaves have pruned the dialect and leave out Uncle Remus all together. Most notable of these is Jump!: the Adventures of Brer Rabbit (HBJ, 1986). This newest attempt brings together two distinguished children's book creators in a most unusual recreation. Lester has retold 48 of the folktales in standard English but with a strong feel for the dialect of the original stories. His retellings are as lively as the originals but they also have a liveliness of their own, as he incorporates modern allusions which never seem out of place. Even more importantly, he uses the sharp, witty Uncle Remus who narrated the original folktales, and not the more servile character from the opening and closing segments who many found offensive. Pinkney's illustrations are mostly black-and-white sketches with some full-color double-page spreads. They do not have the sass of the original A. B. Frost illustrations, but they are filled with strong interest and a great humor which serves the text well. This will be of great interest to school and public libraries as well as to storytellers as a source which gives new life to an American classic. Kay McPherson, Central Atlanta-Fulton Public Library Copyright 1987 Cahners Business Information.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

A retelling of the Afro-American tales about the adventures and misadventures of Brer Rabbit and his friends and enemies.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Describes the origins of Uncle Remus, the adventures of Brer Rabbit, the tricks of Brer Fox, and their encounters with Mr. Man