Hercules on the Bayou, A Childrens Book by Connie Collins and Herb Leonhard
Everyone knows the story of mighty Hercules and his many labors: rerouting a river; defeating flying, man-eating pests; and slaying the monstrous, regenerating . . . crawfish?
The adopted son of Claude and Claudette, a kindly Cajun couple, Hercules fights off mosquitoes, invents the crawfish boil, washes out a stinky gator farm, and captures the terrifying guardian of the underworld: a gigantic, fiery catfish.
This lighthearted twist on the tales of Ancient Greece and Cajun Louisiana—two of the greatest storytelling cultures—is laced with mini pourquoi tales explaining why mosquitoes buzz in people’s ears, how cottonmouths got their name, and more. Hilarious illustrations by beloved children’s-book artist Herb Leonhard celebrate the vibrant culture of South Louisiana.
Connie Collins Morgan grew up with her Cajun family in Lafayette, Louisiana. The nearby bayous provided a rich environment for her imaginative mind, while her cultural upbringing provided inspiration for her fancies. Her delight in the power of words led her to a degree in elementary education from the University of Southwestern Louisiana and then to an MFA in children’s literature from Hollins University. It was at Hollins that she began to explore her childhood fantasies and turn them into fully developed tales. Morgan teaches in Middletown, Maryland. She and her husband live in the Blue Ridge Mountains of West Virginia near their children. Morgan previously collaborated with illustrator Herb Leonhard on The Runaway Beignet.
Herb Leonhard received a BFA in illustration from the Pacific Northwest College of Art. His award-winning work has appeared in D Magazine and on album covers, greeting cards, and posters. He is the illustrator of several Pelican books, including St. Patrick and the Three Brave Mice, A Southern Child’s Garden of Verses, Leonardo’s Monster, I Know a Librarian Who Chewed on a Word, A Is for Alliguitar: Musical Alphabeasts, Southern Mother Goose, Way Out West on My Little Pony, and The Runaway Beignet. Leonhard lives with his family and a plethora of pets in Prosser, Washington.