The Girl Who Married a Lion: And Other Tales from Africa

Alexander McCall Smith was born in what is now Zimbabwe and grew up hearing stories that so enchanted him, he passed them along to his own children He now shares them in this jewel of a book.
The Girl Who Married a Lion And Other Tales from Africa Alexander McCall Smith was born in what is now Zimbabwe and grew up hearing stories that so enchanted him he passed them along to his own children He now shares them in this jewel of a book

  • Title: The Girl Who Married a Lion: And Other Tales from Africa
  • Author: Alexander McCall Smith
  • ISBN: 9780375423123
  • Page: 367
  • Format: Hardcover
  • 1 thought on “The Girl Who Married a Lion: And Other Tales from Africa”

    1. Those familiar with Precious Ramotswe can easily imagine her listening to the tales from this delightful collection. Relaxing after a day's work as No. 1 Ladies' Detective with a cup of bush tea, her mind might wander back to the stories of her childhood. Those new to McCall Smith's books will find in "The Girl Who Married a Lion" an excellent introduction into the gentle and caring world of Mma Ramotswe and her friends. The same warmth and affection that McCall Smith conveyed through his Botswa [...]

    2. A really interesting collection of folk stories from Zimbabwe and Botswana. Animals play a prominent role in many of the stories, the strength and supremacy of the lion, the trickery of the hare etc are recurring themes. Deceit is shown time and again to be punished and virtue and morality rewarded. I particularly liked the tale " A Tree to Sing to".

    3. This is a collection of fables, legends and myths from two countries in Africa – Zimbabwe and Botswana. These traditional stories share many characteristics with folk tales from neighboring regions. But while they may be a part of the oral literature of Southern Africa, the lessons taught are universal in that they explore emotions common to all humankind – greed, envy, pride, ambition, love, kindness, generosity. Smith explains in the forward that he has done little more than record the sto [...]

    4. I am a sucker for folk tales. Growing up I read tales from every culture I could get my hands on, so I was delighted to find this compendium by Alexander McCall Smith.It has always struck me as fascinating that all cultures tell the same tales, though the details change: parents who cannot have children; families faced with famine and natural disasters; clever boys or girls who are rewarded by the spirits for overcoming adversity. No matter if you hit Africa, Asia, Europe or Native American tale [...]

    5. A collection of folktales from Botswana and Zimbabwe that have been collected by the author of the #1 Ladies Detective Agency series. I was disappointed. It would have been interesting to me to know which tales were from which of the countries but there is no mention anywhere. At the beginning there is a Letter from Mma Ramotswe and I'm struggling to know why Smith felt this should be included unless he was trying to play off the recognition of the series and the fact that some of the stories ar [...]

    6. I loved, absolutely loved "Guinea Fowl Child".These tales are collected from Zimbabwe and Botswana, and cover a wide range for types. There are trickster tales (mostly with a hare being the trickster), just so tales (why animals do this), and family tales. Anyone who is familiar with Joel Chandler Harris will recognize "Tremendously Clever Tricks are Played, but to Limited Effect". Hare in many of these tales is the forerunner of Brer Rabbit. I'm not sure how this ties into the Ladies No1 agency [...]

    7. It feels a bit strange to give a rating to this book, because I am in no way an expert on folktales. I cannot comment on the presentation in comparison to other compilations of similar stories, nor on the scholarship which may or may not be present here. However, I can say with full confidence that I did not in anyway enjoy this experience, filled as it was with the virtues of taking revenge on those who have tricked you, or murdering or skinning alive your foes. As it is presented as a children [...]

    8. A nice collection of folk tales from Africa. Africa is a continent that is very rich when it comes to folk tales and art. The book presents various folk tales with diverse characters and plots that you wouldn't come across anywhere else. Each folk tale is intriguing and has a lesson that one can learn.

    9. Many of us have read Aesop’s Fables, which teach us about man’s foibles and morality, but I had never heard of many of these tales from Africa. These folk tales from Zimbabwe and Botswana are told by former law professor Alexander McCall Smith, a native of Zimbabwe, who now makes his home far to the north in Scotland. Africa maintains a rich tradition of oral literature and these stories are told with humor and spirit. Allow me to describe two of these tales to give the reader some idea of w [...]

    10. Alyssa PetersTraditional Literature This book has many short stories in it. The stories originated in Africa and have been passed down from generation to generation. Some of the stories were neat to read, others were gruesome. One of the stories talked about a cheetah who tricked her friend the goat into going across the river. While she was gone, cheetah grabbed goat’s children and wrapped them up to cook later. Others had seen what cheetah had done. They distracted cheetah, and switched goa [...]

    11. Oh man I just want to mine this collection for future novels. Or to be more accurate I want someone else to mine this collection for novels and write them so I can read them. :D Sister of Bones? Children of Wax? Brave Hunter? The Wife Who Could Not Work? Head Tree? Guys where are my books based on these, I'm waiting. I'd include 'A Strange Creature Took The Place of a Girl' but it has enough similarities with The Goose Girl that I feel satisfied that I have in fact read this novel several times. [...]

    12. I was under the misconception that this is a children book. It's actually an anthology of traditional stories from Mma Ramotwse's land, and if you like the The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency this is a sweet addendum to your library. Moreover, I'm into fairytales and folklore.In these short stories we meet animals and people whose adventures explain traditions, behaviours and the dos and donts of life in the south of Africa. I'm always amazed at how such tales look alike all over the world. Here [...]

    13. Liked the simplicity of writing style and wordsmithing which supported the oral tradition of the African folktales. Not all were positive stories - some having horrific outcomes when the story or ending was actually considered. Wide variety of topics covering hunting, gathering, family, marriage, relationships, death, life, weather, travel, animals vs people or animals in relationship with people. Definite insights into the African culture with settings and situations unusual to Western culture. [...]

    14. This is a collection of folk tales from Zimbabwe and Botswana. They were either told to him by local people when he lived in that part of the world or he came across them via a local friend who had collected and made translations of them into English. In his intro AM says he has kept to the original stories but has "added some descriptions of landscape and deepened the treatment of certain emotions" and that in doing so he hopes "to bring out the beauty and poetry of these stories." They make a [...]

    15. A collection of fables and folklore from Africa. Although there is mention that the neighboring countries where these stories originate share so much similarities there isn't much other description as to which ethical group was the actual contributor. I didn't know or have ever read the series where Precious was a character so that part was a bit of a loss.Otherwise the rest of the stories were quite refreshing while keeping the basic elements that make them a part of African lore. And two of th [...]

    16. I absolutely love fairy and folk tales, and love reading tales from other countries. Such an interesting collection of stories :) I certainly enjoyed some more than others, and thought some were rather odd, but overall found this short collection to be a delightful treat. :)

    17. Quick read. A lot of familial folklore - on betrayal vs. trust, earned respect/bravery vs. birthright. I enjoyed the animal tales most, although some were abrupt endings. Pretty "on-the-surface" (and at times felt a tad generic) but enjoyable. I guess I was just hoping I'd reallyfeelan African vibe. (Not sure that makes sense, but hey!) It was fun though - good for a day of curling up in my big chair with a cup of coffee.

    18. This book is best listened to because the cast of readers is so amazing. I listened to this on a long solo road trip and enjoyed the short folktales very much. Because I have listened to many of Alexander McCall Smiths books, the cast was familiar and brought a feeling of rekindled friendship to me.

    19. This is a collection of very short stories, folk tales primarily from Zimbabwe and Botswana as collected by McCall Smith (author of the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series). I enjoyed the format of the book, picking it up when I just had five minutes to read here and there. Moreover, it was a nice way to immerse myself in the folk literature of another part of the world.

    20. Mi aspettavo una cosa completamente differente. Ammetto, però, che è stato interessante leggere queste storie. Rispecchiano un modo differente di vivere, di pensare. Sono racconti intrisi di natura e di credenze che non ci appartengono, ma che ci fanno capire che la malvagità è qualcosa che puoi trovare accanto a te e dentro di te. E su questo, tutto il mondo è paese.

    21. So enjoyed these stories, especially by listening via audiobook with excellent narrators--all of them! Listening made the stories come alive and captured the oral culture in which they were first told and passed down. Excellent!

    22. A charming collection of folktales from Zimbabwe and Botswana, written by the author of the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series.

    23. I enjoyed this book a lot. Simple and sweet and reminded me of the African Tales storybook which I'd read while growing up. I would love to read this book to my kids!

    24. Interesting folktales from Southern Africa narrated in Alexander McCall Smith's typical matter of fact, warm spirited and overall entertaining style.

    25. Folktale retellings, by a white British/African :/, often with animal characters. I enjoyed the southern African setting, since most African tales I've read before were West African (ie Anansi the Spider). Quick-to-read and simple language, but nothing particularly memorable, and the stories sort of ran together.

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