In this wonderful West African folktale, Shadusa believes he is by far the best man in town. And why not? He carries two antelope at once and everyone in town knows they’ve never seen anyone better. He strides about town proclaiming his is the Master Man and challenges anyone to beat him. Then Shadusa’s wife Shettu meets a stranger at the well whose baby is better than Shadusa by far, and he’s only a baby. Curious and looking to make her husband be less of a braggart, Shettu asks about this mighty child. It turns out the baby’s father is the source of that strength, another “Master Man.” Has Shadusa met his match? This vibrant tale booms across the page with evocative language and artwork of cut paper that breaks out of its panels and disrupts the story, just like Shadusa. A great tale to read out loud, to be sure, and maybe you can have your try at carrying an antelope or two.

Master Man: A Tall Tale of Nigeria
ISBN: 0688137849
By Aaron Shepard
Art by David Wisniewski
Harper Collins, 2001

  • Robin B.

    | She/Her Teen Librarian, Public Library of Brookline

    Editor in Chief

    Robin E. Brenner is Teen Librarian at the Brookline Public Library in Massachusetts. She has chaired the American Library Association Great Graphic Novels for Teens Selection List Committee, the Margaret A. Edwards Award Committee, and served on the Michael L. Printz Award Committee. She is currently the President of the Graphic Novels and Comics Round Table for ALA. She was a judge for the 2007 Eisner awards, helped judge the Boston Globe Horn Book Awards in 2011, and contributes to the Good Comics for Kids blog at School Library Journal. She regularly gives lectures and workshops on graphic novels, manga, and anime at comics conventions including New York and San Diego Comic-Con and at the American Library Association’s conferences. Her guide, Understanding Manga and Anime (Libraries Unlimited, 2007), was nominated for a 2008 Eisner Award.

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