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What's the Hurry, Fox?: And Other Animal Stories    by Zora Neale Hurston, Joyce Carol Thomas & Bryan Collier order for
What's the Hurry, Fox?
by Zora Neale Hurston
Order:  USA  Can
HarperCollins, 2004 (2004)
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

This is a selection of oral 'pourquoi tales' collected by anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston from the rural South -Florida, Alabama, Georgia, and Louisiana - and adapted by Joyce Carol Thomas. Bryan Collier's rich illustrations takes us back to the tales' colorful roots.

From these sly stories we learn 'Why the Buzzard Has No Home' (he's got a short term focus) and enjoy the Rooster's dialog with his enemy in 'What's the Hurry, Fox?' You can almost hear a relaxed old raconteur telling 'Why Porpoise's Tail Is on Crosswise', and feel the frustration with stubborn donkey in 'Why Donkey Has Long Ears'. Did you ever wonder (my favorite in this book) 'Why the Dog Hates the Cat'? Wonder no more; it all goes back to a ham. Or 'Why the Waves Have Whitecaps' (it has to do with squabbling mothers). Or 'Why Frog Got Eyes and Mole Got Tail' (a sensible swap). Or 'Why Flies Get the First Taste' (a dispensation from on high)?

There's a lot to learn about getting along from these charming Southern folktales - enjoy reading them aloud, and mulling over their meanings, together.

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