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Feast of Fools Free Resources, and Goodies to buy

Stuff to buy

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Storytelling and resource books recommended by our storytellers, or, How To Spend Lots of Money very Usefully!
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Feast of Fools Goodies to Buy

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The Feast of Fools Booklist

I wrote to storytellers who have visited us since we moved from the NN cafe to add to the Christmas Wishlist we published while still there. Here, in fairly random order, is what they sent, plus some contributions by other friendly tellers. Comments are by contributors.
Very many thanks to all, we appreciate your time in sharing these.
This is now more than a Christmas wishlist, it's a great resource list for building a library

You'll see that below I added the original 2015 list too, so keep scrolling!

Giles Abbott

Robert Graves’ “Greek Myths vols 1&2”.
“Myths Of The Norsemen” by Kevin Crossley Holland.
Irish Fairy Tales by James Stephens

Dave Tong

Medieval Comic Tales edited by Derek Brewer, a medievalist who gives insights into the writers such as Chaucer and Boccaccio. It’s a must for anyone wanting to get into the authentic tales of long ago, without having to trawl through huge collections of source material, much of which is unsuitable for modern audiences. Having done just that myself, I’ve come to realise just how valuable collections like Brewer’s are.

My second choice would be Idries Shah’s, World Tales. A beautifully illustrated book and a fine collection of tales, but all the so was concerned about the amount boxes for the Hope Centre. better for Shah’s academic approach to his writing, in that like Brewer, he is very interested in the origins of stories and intros each by talking about similar tales from other lands, something that I am very interested in.

Clare Murphy

Den Keding: Elder Tales– tales of courage & wisdom from around the world
Yanagita Kunio: Guide to the Japanese Folk tale

Emily Hennessey

Alan Garner’s Folk Tales. It has some cracking stories in, plus a very clear and succinct retelling of the Indian epic, The Ramayana, which is a great introduction to this amazing story!

Ben Haggarty

The *new*  (2017 3rd) edition of 'Technicians of the Sacred' edited by Jerome Rothenberg.

Marion Leeper

Walter Rye's Glossary of Words used in East Anglia.  It's a snip at £90 for a first edition, or alternatively it's sitting on a shelf in the English Faculty Library in Cambridge where anyone can go in and look at it.  Every page is full of deliciously unlikely words.

WH Barrett's “More Tales from the Fens”, which is also worth putting on a wishlist.
Or favourite picturebook, Footpath Flowers, by Jon Arno Lawson.

Fiona Collins

I think Anne Pellowski's 'The World of Storytelling' (H. W. Wilson, 1991 ed) is a really interesting book for people who would like to know a bit more about traditional ways of storytelling around the world.  It has photos and accounts of all kind of things like the way the Inuit people 'snow knife' stories as they tell them. 
Sioned Davies' translation of The Mabinogion (OUP, 2007)
Margaret Jones' illustrations to Gwyn Thomas and Kevin Crossley-Holland's  Tales from the Mabinogion (Gwasg Prifysgol Cymru /Wales University Press, 1992 ed)
  Hugh Lupton, The Assembly of the Severed Head (Propolis, 2018)

Lynette Hill

Texas Ghost Stories: Fifty Favorites for the Telling by Tim Tingle, storyteller laureate for the Choctaw nation after hearing him perform at Jonesboro, TN.
Hugh Lupton's 'Assembly of the Severed Heads' is an amazing story about a storyteller telling the Mabinogion. Definitely worth the read.

Stephen Hobbs

An Introduction to Storytelling by Storytellers from around the World. Christine Willison (editor). The History Press, 2018, 9780750987554, £15.99 (paperback).
A great introduction, but it's really much more than that. It's a defence of storytelling and a celebration of its many voices: it's also a storytelling resource book; and as it says on the blurb "Tips, tools and tales: read this book, and take your turn". But above all, it's a book about the craft and joy of storytelling and the practitioners who are deeply immersed in their craft. I was given this book as a birthday present, and I would like to pass it on to you - except you're going to have to buy your own copy! It's well worth the price, and you should support your local bookshop by paying that price and not try to get it cheaper from Amazon.
[Editor's comment - thoroughly agree with this, using proper shops, even alternative more ethical online ones, rather than Amazon.]
Angela Carter's Book of Fairy Tales, Angela Carter (editor). Virago, 2005, 9781844081738, £12.99 (hardback)
A glorious muscular collection of world-wide tales. Dive into Carter's world of fairy noir! The perfect antidote to Disney fairy tales. Not suitable for children!

Debs Newbold

I get inspiration from writers whose work with story I admire. I think with the novelists it'd be hard to see why - it's a very personal thing - but perhaps the plays might be a more tangible recommendation.

Jerusalem and The Ferryman by Jez Butterworth are both masterclasses in one kind of story structure and how to hold and unfold a deep narrative.
Also Swallow by Stef Smith, though it's not an easy read, or watch.
An Oak Tree by Tim Crouch is masterfully inventive, though it won't be to everyone's taste. 
Pretty much anything by the playwright Caryl Churchill is worth a read - she plays so much with form it really inspires me as a storyteller.
For connecting with spontaneity and creativity as a writer & maker I highly recommend the classic Impro by Keith Johnstone. A seminal book, really.
And in the same vein but for performance, especially connection with the spoken word;  The Actor Speaks, or Speaking Shakespeare, both by Patsy Rodenburg.
After that I would be on to films, which along with music, give me the most practical inspiration. I won't go into that here except to say that Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri by the Coen Brothers is one of the most brilliant workings of story structure I have seen in a long long time.

Janet Dowling

Jane Yolens Favourite folk tales - that should keep you busy!
Steve Killicks and Taffy Thomas' "Telling Tales" is good and introduces storytellers to the concept of emotional literacy, so they have a better understanding of the power of storytelling.
Loads more I could suggest... [Editorial comment - you bet she could, as Janet has a truly hu-u-ge library of storytelling-related books. She's also too modest to mention:
Janet Dowling "Devon Ghost Tales" published Oct 1st 2018 'Not just another Devon ghost story book!'


Here's the original 2015 list

... as much as I can find of that list to add to the new one.

Sarah Rundle

A good starting book is Angela Carter's Book of Fairy Tales (originally published as The Virago book of Fairy Tales and The Second Virago Book of Fairy Tales). Virago, 2005 plus numerous reprints since, ISBN 978-84408-173-8, £13.
Italian Folktales by Italo Calvino is published in English translation (by George Martin) in paperback and hardback by Penguin Modern Classics. paperback £17, ISBN 978-0-141-18134-9

Dave Blake:

The Old Stories: Folk Tales from East Anglia and the Fen Country by Kevin Crossley-Holland 1 85881 753 6
The Magic Lands: Folk Tales of Britain and Ireland by Kevin Crossley-Holland 1 84255 514 6
Grimm Tales for Old and Young by Philip Pullman 978 0 141 44222 8
An excellent publisher of children's material - Barefoot Books ( Includes The Adventures of Odysseus by Hugh Lupton and Daniel Morden, and other retellings by these excellent storytellers. )

Guto Dafis

Arab Folktales by Inea Bushnaq (Pantheon)
Meeting the Other Crowd: The Fairy Stories of Hidden Ireland by Eddie Lenihan is fascinating, because they are stories as told by people to whom the fairies and other supernatural phenomena are a very real and frightening thing; as told by people who believe in what they are talking about, rather than filtered through the words of folklorists and re-tellers.

Eamonn Keenan

There is a series of books published by The History Press Ireland,, they publish stories from different counties of Ireland under the title Folk Tales currently I have Armagh, Armagh, Carlow,Down, Donegal and Kildare. Each book is written by local stories tellers such as Steve Lally, Aideen McBride, Brendan Nolan, Frances Quinn and Joe Brennan who are all great storytellers. They are paper back and all reasonably priced.

Liz Weir:

Glassie, H. (ed): Irish Folk Tales Penguin 0140595090
Forest, Heather: Wonder Tales from Around the World August House 0-87-483-478-3
Hallworth, G: Listen to This Story Magnet 0416582702

Kevin Walker

Myths and Legends From Around the World by Sandy Shepherd. Evans Brothers Ltd. It groups the stories into sections like 'The heavens and the earth'....'The world we live in' and presents sometimes difficult stories in a very readable fashion.
I also keep my eyes open at book sales for old collections of stories that might not be PC but are very useful for a trained eye! A R Hope Moncrieff...Classic Myth and Legends...and Romance and Legends of Chivalry...but also books like Story Lives of Men of Science, E J Rowotham. They contain stories for most 'occasions' that can be modernised!

Theresa Kelleher

Clarrisa Pinkola Estes: Women Who Run With The Wolves

Richard York

Briggs, Katherine: "British Folktales and Legends, a Sampler" Was Paladin Bks. Re-published by Routledge. (The first proper story collection which I encountered, around 40 years ago!)
Ransome, Arthur: Old Peter's Russian Tales now by various publishers. (Dated children's book with a rather saccharine “carrier” story, but linking perfectly good traditional Russian folktales collected by Ransome when he worked there as a British Spy.
19th/early 20th Century Collections by Joseph Jacobs; and by Andrew Lang, (Red, Green, Yellow, etc Fairy Book series) Again dated, but much good material in there if you find 2nd hand bookshop copies.

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