Great American Folklore
Great American Folklore: Legends, Tales, Ballads, and Superstitions from All Across America, compiled by Kemp P. Battle, 3/5
I understand the need to document and collect traditional stories to preserve them for posterity, but if there is a way to do so while also creating a good reading experience, the editor of this volume has not discovered it. Most of these tales clearly belong to an oral tradition, so it feels strange to encounter them stripped of their correct community context, not to mention the awkward (potentially racist) attempts to convey vernacular in prose.
Why I read it: Somehow it ended up in my to-read pile, though I can’t remember where or when I acquired it.
There Was a Horse
There Was a Horse: Folktales from Many Lands, selected by Phyllis R. Fenner, 5/5
This enjoyable collection of horse-themed legends from a variety of cultures is most notable for its fantastic pen and ink illustrations by Henry C. Pitz.
Why I read it: the title and spine detail caught my eye in a bookstore.