Ghostly Tales of Japan

Author Rafe Martin

This 1990 Parents’ Choice Gold Award winner and American Library Association 1992 Best of the Best for Children contains favorites that Rafe has been telling for years.  “The Boy Who Drew Cats” emphasizes the saving power of faith in one’s own creativity; “Urashima Taro” is a well-known tale in Japan (in the Catskill mountains he would be Rip Van Winkle); “Ho-Ichi the Earless” shows we have the power within to triumph over whatever evil we may face; and “Kogi”is an original story based on an old tale of a Buddhist priest-painter who dreams he becomes a fish. 

“Rafe Martin’s convincing delivery and excellent timing cast listeners under the spell of Japan in these four unusual tales.  Well worth the purchase price.” — Booklist 

Ages 8 & up  CD (60min)  $14.95  Item #025
ISBN:  978-0-938456-75-0    Published – 1989

Rafe Martin Tells His Children’s Stories

Author Rafe Martin

This 1994 Parents' Choice Gold Award Winner collects, for the first time on one CD, four of Rafe’s acclaimed children’s books. This audio cassette features the original, oral versions of The Rough-Face Girl, Foolish Rabbit’s Big Mistake, The Boy Who Lived with the Seals, and Will’s Mammoth (all published by Putnam).  Dramatic, lively, and uniquely different from his  books, these four stories are brought to life with all the richness of voice and expression for which Rafe’s storytelling is known.  “The four stories on this CD,” Rafe explains, “are the way I actually tell them, live, today. I have wanted to share these performances with my many readers for some time.  People who have heard me tell these stories have been amazed to  discover how different the original, oral, and printed versions really are.  Now, at last, here they are for you to enjoy.” 

Ages 5 & up  CD (60 min)  $14.95  Item #027
ISBN:  978-0-938756-64-4    Published - 1994

Sometimes the Soul

Author Gioia Timpanelli

Si cunta e si ricunta.  It is told and told again.

When Sometimes the Soul was first published, the New York Times book review said of Gioia Timpanelli's work that it "offers simple lessons about the nature of beauty and the beauty of nature."  Gary Snyder commented "She has the capacity to draw out the very depths of the power of myths and narrative and to take literature back to its sources before your eyes (and ears)."

With this recording, the listener is provided with the opportunity to hear the author read the graceful novellas that make up Sometimes the Soul. Her deceptively simple presentation is informed by her years of storytelling and brings alive the simple elegance of her work.  "Timpanelli draws on her deep knowledge of…old stories and their wisdoms to create a new and refreshing kind of storytelling."  In A Knot of Tears, which is based on a Sicilian folk tale, "a woman's locked-up life is transformed by a parrot who tells tales; her story becomes a subtle and surprising meditation on the necessity of being true to oneself and others."   Rusina, Not Quite in Love is "a strange and lovely"** version of Beauty and the Beast; "here the author's interest is less in the old fairy tale itself than in the purpose of storytelling.   'It is true,' says the Uncle, one of the characters in Rusina.  'These old stories are like the parables, they tell us what we know but have strangely forgotten, until we hear it again and we say, Oh!  Yes.  Of course.'"   "With a sense of character unusual in contemporary fiction (not merely personality, but moral character) and a gentle, lyric touch, Timpanelli blends the seeming simplicity of folktale with a richly textured understanding of human nature.  With great integrity and affection for language, her work teaches about love and solitude, honesty and art."

The universal themes in Timpanelli's stories are expressed the old-fashioned way--through the oral tradition. These two finely crafted novellas explore, within a traditional framework, the lives of two highly untraditional women.  While Timpanelli's stories are 'simple but not so simple,' they reveal fiction's power to shape and transform our lives.

"No one in the world . . . can tell a story better than Gioia Timpanelli."--Frank McCourt, author of Angela's Ashes

4 Compact Discs  $29.95  Item # 071
ISBN: 978-0-938756-70-5


Author Gioia Timpanelli

We are honored to publish this first CD with Gioia, who has been telling for over 20 years.  In an afternoon and evening of improvisational storytelling, she performed a diverse and mesmerizing selection of stories:  traditional Sicilian folktales; the Grimms’ versions of “Cinderella” and “The Shoemaker and the Elves” (the first story Gioia remembers as a child); nature stories; and personal stories from her childhood in Brooklyn.  Gioia expresses a reverence for the natural world.  Her stories honor the ways the ordinary holds extraordinary things and the ways extraordinary things are made of the ordinary.

Ages 12 & up  CD (60min)  $14.95  Item #070
ISBN: 978-0-938756-71-0

According To Tradition

Medicine Story, Cora Bardwell, Warren Griffin, Rosario Salve Testaverde

This unique collection of stories features four tellers who represent the rich and colorful tradition of New England storytelling. Medicine Story, a Wampanoag medicine man, tells part of his tribe’s creation cycle; Cora Bardwell tells family stories and gives a recitation from rural Vermont in the early 1900s; Warren Griffin tells of living on Boston’s Beacon Hill during the Depression; and Rosario Salve Testaverde tells of his 60 years of fishing out of Gloucester, Mass. The accompanying booklet describes the tellers, storytelling in New England, and the collective project that produced these stories.

Ages 8 & up, Adult  CD (60min)  $14.95  Item #070
ISBN: 978-0-938756-78-1