Review: Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters

Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters :: Children's Book Review
Image Source: Teaching Children Philosophy

Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters: An African Tale

Author: John Steptoe

Published in 1987 by Lothrop, Lee, and Shepard Books

Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters is an African tale that tells the story of two sisters who are both eligible to marry the king and become the new queen. Their father, Mufaro, encourages them to make the journey to present themselves before the king because they are beautiful and the king wants to marry the most worthy daughter. One of the sisters, Manyara, is greedy, impolite, and selfish, and she wants to marry the king and make her sister Nyasha their servant. Nyasha is humble, thoughtful, and kind. While Manyara is rude to others, Nyasha selflessly cares for all she encounters on her way to meet the king. Upon arriving, the king reveals that he had transformed into different people and animals that Manyara and Nyasha had encountered on their journey so he could see for himself their true character. This story offers a good lesson on kindness and humility.

*Caldecott Medal

*Coretta Scott King Award

Additional Resources:

Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters Lesson Extension:

Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters Lesson Plans and Teaching Resources:


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