We have put together a collection of nine books which feature the best of African storytelling, are fun to read and share long-held wisdoms. The collection focuses only on stories that captivate young readers and make them laugh. The collection is diverse. These books are available as a collection on www.natakabooks.co.uk
1. Gloria's Porridge
Elizabeth Laing travelled to Ethiopia and lived there for a time. She has collected hundreds of folktales, recorded and documented the stories for posterity. Her children's books draw on this folklore to tell engaging, funny tales full of wisdom. Gloria is not keen to share her porridge but soon learns the lesson that sharing is more rewarding. Stories told in antiquity, and at times updated to modern times, remain some of the best stories we all have.
2. I Am Nefertiti
When Nefertiti plays the drums, the band plays as one. "I am Nefertiti" she says, and she feels ten feet tall. But when the new music teacher shortens her name to 'Nef', bit by bit, she starts to shrink. Without Nefertiti to keep the beat, the band is in disarray . . . "I am Nefertiti!" she whispers to herself.
Drawing on her inner strength and with the support of the other children, they help Miss Potts recognise the importance of honouring Nefertiti's name. Now, when Nefertiti keeps the beat, the music sounds so sweet! A heart warming, joyous, empowering story of identity and belonging.
3. Anansi and the Golden Pot
'Anansi and the Golden Pot' is a re-imagining of the fairy tale of Anansi the spider. The youngest boy in the family, Kweku, is cheeky like the spider, and is nicknamed Anansi. Kweku makes a magical discovery but will he share his findings? Sharing is caring.
4. The Queen on our Corner
'The Queen on our Corner' is about an old lady most people never notice except for a little girl. No one notices the queen until they need her. An easy to follow story loved by young readers which explains all the different people and movements in a busy city. Communities remain united.
5. Queen Yaa Saves the Golden Stool
'Queen Yaa Saves the Golden Stool' is a fun and inspirational story based on Queen Yaa Asantewaa, the responsible leader of the Ashanti Kingdom. A brave queen who goes the extra mile to protect her people and culture.
The end of a busy day and it is bedtime for Amir. Except Amir does not want to go to bed, and thinks there is a monster, 'Grobblechops' under his bed. Mom and Dad show Amir what he can do if the monster arrives, including shouting, bringing a pan and more tricks. The classic 'Monster Under a Bed' is retold with lessons about sharing, disagreements and calling for Mom and Dad when required.
7. Queen Moremi Makes a Promise
'Queen Moremi Makes a Promise' is a fun and inspirational story based on a real-life Yoruba queen, Olori Moremi, who lived over 800 years ago in modern-day Nigeria. This is a playful story about a popular queen who learns the importance of keeping a promise!
8. Beautiful Bananas
Beatrice is on her way to see her grandfather. Along the way, she will meet a bee, a giraffe, a monkey, a lion and many more animals that she interacts with. They all help her find her way to her grandfather and at the she brings a present. A simple story about the power of sharing and cooperation.
9. The Name Game
There is no such thing as having nothing to do and being bored because there are things to discover in the house, plants and animals to explore in the garden and many more things to give names to. An excellent book about imagination, playing and learning all at the same time.