Story of Little Black Sambo
A remarkable celebration from the Caldecott Honor-winning artist!
A clever young boy outwits a band of voracious tigers and returns home in triumph to a splendid feast of a yard-high stack of pancakes. The story, penned by Helen Brodie Bannerman for her two daughters in 1889, has captured the imagination of readers around the world and across many generations. But the pictures which accompanied her text were crudely stereotypical and hurtful to many. Caldecott Honor-winning artist Christopher Bing has spent almost fifteen years rediscovering the joy and energy of the original story. He respects that Bannerman was writing in an Indian setting and with Indian animals-after all, there are no tigers in Africa-and faithfully adheres to the original text. However, recognizing that the image of Sambo has been used as a symbol of repression of Africans and African-Americans, Christopher Bing celebrates Sambo as proudly African, a child of beauty and joy, wit and resourcefulness.
In recreating the illusion of an antique, weathered, tiger-clawed storybook filled with exquisitely detailed paintings that draw upon a lush jungle-inspired palette, Christopher Bings interpretation of Sambos world seamlessly melds a grand sense of wonder with the minutiae of nature, and a story with history.
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