Author Farrah Chow-Quan has transformed her Trinidadian roots and love for the rich culture of her childhood to create her debut Caribbean children’s book entitled ‘The Adventures of Anansi and Boisie ABC’. The inspiration for the book stemmed from her upbringing in Trinidad and exposure to children’s folklore characters at an early age. Her fondest memories were attending shows at Queens Hall, starring Paul Keens-Douglas, a renown Trinidadian pioneer and master in the art of storytelling and social commentating in the English-speaking Caribbean.
‘The Adventures of Anansi and Boisie ABC’
After moving to the states, Chow-Quan always pursued projects that align with her Trinidadian heritage. When carnival festivities came to a screeching halt throughout the pandemic, her company Carnival Kicks (well-known designer carnival footwear brand) had to be put on hold. The lack of Caribbean representation in the children’s book aisle and her newfound downtime, soon led to her fulfilling her literary dreams. Along with the collaborative efforts of Daniel Blaize, an award winning, freelance digital artist based in Trinidad and Tobago, ‘The Adventures of Anansi and Boisie ABC’ was born.
“When my daughter was born, I wanted to read to her a book about Trinidad culture and at that time there weren’t many options. I feel like I pick projects that keep me close to home, just as I did with Carnival Kicks. I also wanted to share with my kids who weren’t born in Trinidad some of their culture.” – Farrah Chow-Quan.
A significant element of the book is the use of anthropomorphism, which is when animals are given human qualities or characteristics, a storytelling technique commonly used in Caribbean folktales. Most persons grew up hearing stories of Anansi and the mischievous spider. Chow-Quan had initially written the book with Anansi as the traditional male character and later decided to go in a completely different direction by introducing Anansi as a female character instead. With the rise of female empowerment and more women being recognized for their achievements; it was important for Anansi to be portrayed as a strong female lead character alongside her male counterpart, Boisie. Persons can follow The Adventures of Anansi and Boisie on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube @anansiandboisie to learn more about her origin story and her fun adventures with friends.
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As a nod to her appreciation for Trinbagonian culture, Chow-Quan also made a point to model all the other characters based on animals specifically indigenous to Trinidad and Tobago. Such as Heidi the Hummingbird, Boisie the Bachac, Tanty the Hawksbill Turtle (an endangered species) and Patraj the Purple Honeycreeper. There is also special emphasis placed on highlighting the traditional music of the steel pan and the colloquial dialect throughout the book.
“I wanted the book to be a teaching tool for my children who are not living in Trinidad, and I feel like there are other expats, like myself, that really want to impart the culture on their kids. And of course, for all the kids! I feel like over the years we’ve kind of lost the art local storytelling and of really immersing the kids in the characters and the story, I’d love to play a role in reviving that.”. – Farrah Chow-Quan
‘The Adventures of Anansi and Boisie ABC’ books are available online at www.anansiandboisie.com, Amazon and in stores at Excellent Stores, RIK, Scribble & Quills, and more locations to be announced.
For more information please contact: Farrah Chow-Quan 305-753-8653 / firstname.lastname@example.org
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