African and Caribbean folktales in London

Wendy Shearer has written and contributed to three books that will be published in 2021. Below is a list of her books which are available for pre-order and a list of some of the stories which she tells in person for storytelling:

Her first children’s book: African and Caribbean Folktales, Myths and Legends will be published by Scholastic on 2nd September 2021. It is available to pre-order from Waterstones and Amazon. 

She has also written a story about Mary Seacole for the children’s collection Bedtime Stories: Beautiful Black Tales from the Past which will be published in October by Scholastic and is also available to be pre-ordered from Waterstones.

Wendy has also written a book of Caribbean Folktales: Stories from the islands and Windrush Generation for adult readers. This will be published by The History Press in Autumn 2021 and is available for pre-order.

Storytelling: African and Caribbean folktales

Here are a few of the African and Caribbean folktales that Wendy Shearer performs as part of her storytelling repertoire.  All tales are adapted for the relevant audience.  When storytelling for children she uses traditional music, beautiful props and story making activities are included as part of her storytelling workshops.

Wendy Shearer storytelling

All that Glitters…

A wonderful folktale set in in the lush tropics of Guyana. It is the story of an enigmatic traveler who falls in love with a woman from one of the Essequibo islands.  As they journey together it becomes clear that he is not all that she thought him to be as he transforms before her very eyes. Wendy brings to life her Guyanese heritage when telling this love story peppered with funny, yet wise Guyanese proverbs.

Don’t Pay Bad for Bad

A poignant story, based on the tale by storyteller Amos Tutola.  Wendy tells of two sisters who grow up in a West African village together as best friends.  As they grow into adulthood, one becomes wealthy and the other becomes jealous.  Wendy’s telling of this tale focuses on the sensitive relationship between sisters and close friends which can be powerful and at times vengeful. The story ends on a moral for everyone to consider.

Anansi & the talking melon

A funny trickster story about Anansi the spider.  He tricks his friend ‘Elephant’ and lots of other animal characters get roped into the trick. Children join in the storytelling with Wendy, using a bit of drama, costumes and their own story making skills. They make their own version of the tale and bring all the characters to life, journeying through the jungle to find the Kingdom of the Birds.

Anansi & Mr Dry Bone

A magical story which finds the trickster Anansi competing with Mr Dry Bone for the love of Miss Louise.  Here Wendy weaves a beautiful tale with poetry and puppets for younger listeners.  Children can join in the rhymes and laugh at the costumes and tricks created by the characters.

Jamela’s Dress

A lively South African tale of a young girl going on an adventure through town. Wendy brings to life the culture and music of Cape Town with instruments for children to take part in the storytelling with dancing and rhyming.

The Wedding Basket

A wonderful taboo story from West Africa. Love, betrayal and a moral lesson for all to learn. A wealthy man finds himself amongst the daughters of the sky god Nyami.  Pride gets in his way as he breaks a promise.  Everyone is spellbound when they hear this tale with unexpected twists and turns.

Anansi & the Unknown Assignment

A dark tale that finds Anansi challenged by a greedy King and trapped in the house of Death.  Everyone is drawn into the tale by helping Wendy make choices for some of the characters.  No one knows the consequences of each choice, except the storyteller.  The ending reaches a dramatic climax as Anansi flees for his life from brother Death.

Contact Wendy Shearer if you’d like to find out more about the African and Caribbean folktales she performs or other stories.