Tales With a Texas Twist: Original Stories and Everlasting Folklore from the Lone Star State. By Donna Ingham and Illus by Paul G. Hoffman. Guilford, Cn.: GlobePequot/Insiders Guide, 2005.
http://www.globepequot.com/globepequot/index.cfm Pbk,, 160 pages, b&w ills., bib., 5.25 x 8 inches, ISBN: 0-7627-3899-5 Price: $12.95
The tall tale returns. Anecdotes, folklore, humor, social life, and customs wrapped in the skillful creation or re-telling by this college English professor. Ingham is a proven, delightful liar in the popular and academic Austin communities. Here she re-casts Texas traditional facts, folktales, and legends into sharp new molds. And to some outrageous success, the story-teller takes old Greek mythology (Persephone, Cupid, Psyche, etc) and reveals their Texan backgrounds.
Ingham draws some of her tales from J. Frank Dobie’s Texas Folklore Society’s publications, Southern traditions including Br’er Rabbit, and old historical stories of Cindy Ann Parker, Big Foot Wallace, Mollie Bailey, Goodnight & Loving, and Sam Bass.
The first lines of “The Coming of the Bluebonnet” reveals the spinner’s skill as she neatly combines rhythm and rhyme, followed by other combinations of number, sound, and repetition. The tone is Andy Griffith folksy, by her preference.
These 28 stories refresh the old reader’s response to these old stories. She’s a welcome voice who should follow-up with other volumes. For instance, why not take Pecos Bill’s family and give this 20th century tall tale a full-fleshed family of fantastic foibles and futures.
Recommended for readers, junior high to senior citizens, who enjoy a good laugh and even a cry as the short stories unfold. -- WH