Thursday, August 11, 2005

Literature Connection: Children Of The Longhouse

From Amazon:"Grade 3-6?Ohkwa'ri is hiding in a shaded area when he overhears the misguided Grabber's intentions to start a war with the neighboring Anen:taks tribe. Although the boy is barely 11 winters old, he realizes something must be done to stop his fellow tribesman's plans. Set in a longhouse village in upstate New York, Bruchac's story establishes a sense of place in the first chapter: Ohkwa'ri works to become a respected member of his tribe, while Grabber and his cohorts, Greasy Hair, Falls a Lot, and Eats Like a Bear, attempt to get even with him. Despite the predictability of the plot, young readers will enjoy the glimpses of Native American culture. The importance of respect and honor are clearly outlined through Ohkwa'ri's feelings toward his elders such as his grandmother and his uncle. On his own, the earnest young hero builds and sleeps in his own lodge, illustrating independence and self-sufficiency. Other aspects of Native life such as name giving, government, and family relations are outlined. The mixing of fact with fiction is consistent and believable. Jan Hudson's Sweetgrass (Scholastic, 1991) or Elizabeth George Speare's The Sign of the Beaver (Dell, 1993) are more absorbing, yet Bruchac's latest offering is a good choice for large collections." Julie Shatterly, York County Public Library, Rock Hill, SC
Here's a slide show of the first few pages.

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