"From her own collecting efforts and from the contributions of several Kurdish friends Diane has amassed here a useful collection of Kurdish tales. The book includes also recipes and games. We are fortunate to have had these tales collected in this trying time for the Kurdish people. Diane is to be lauded for her efforts and Libraries Unlimited for its publication."
"A labor of love and a magnificent achievement, this collection of tales, legends, recipes, games and history takes readers vividly into the traditional village life of the Kurds, a little-known and politically beleaguered ethnic group whose homeland straddles the borders of Iraq, Iran, Syria and Turkey. Supported partly by grants (including one from NSN), Edgecomb traveled into Turkish Kurdistan, collecting stories from villagers whose language itself had been banned. The resulting book brings lively and unusual stories to light, each one carefully placed in its social and historical context."
"A Fire in My Heart: Kurdish Tales introduces readers to the Kurdish people, their cultural traditions, and their stories. It presents 33 tales representing all regions of Kurdistan and the four main Kurdish dialects--from the Kurdish Cinderella story Fatima to animal stories and stories based on legendary figures (e.g., Rusteme Zal, the Kurdish Hercules)--organized by tale type."
"Diane Edgecomb has spent seven years traveling all around Turkey gathering traditional Kurdish fairy tales, animal fables, and hero tales like that of Shahmaran, a half snake, half woman. Her book, A Fire in My Heart: Kurdish Tales, is the first comprehensive collection of those stories to be published in English."
"This is the first book in my library covering tales from this specific region. A few of the tales are familiar but even those are interesting variants of stories collected from other regions. This book also contains the most detailed information about the culture from which the stories were collected and is illustrated throughout by photo's of people going about their daily work, providing an insight into the lives of the people. The stories vary in length and cover a fascinating range of material."
"In this volume, an excellent team has collected many folk tales about the culture, but the volume is more than that. It begins with a brief history of the culture and peoples spreading over several countries of the Middle East and includes authentic recipes and typical meals eaten by the Kurds, before launching into various stories, legends, and folktales. Thus, it is a great place to introduce or have students introduce the culture to the rest of us."
". . . an excellent source for enhancing a cultural diversity program. The folktales are generally brief and no longer than a few pages -- good for novice storytellers. While recommended for all ages, the stories, though some have double meanings, are generally appropriate for use with young children incorporating rhymes and finger plays; but the greatest use would be by the middle and upper elementary/middle school students and teachers. Exploring different areas of the world in their classroom curriculum as well as extending cultural programs would be greatly enhanced by this series."
Reviewed as part of the World Folklore series.