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Showing posts from November, 2019

FRY BREAD, by Kevin Noble Maillard, Illustrated by Juana Martinez-Neal--a group review

There is no doubt about it--Native children's literature and  YA literature, fiction and nonfiction, is having a moment. Every time we turn around, there's another wonderful book at the library or the publication details are announced or there's an exciting blog or interview. Of course, we feel kinship with all Native books meant to lift us up, and give others authentic representation of every nation and culture. Some Indigenous authors are distant cousins--like Cynthia Leitich Smith, who is a member of the Muscogee Creek Nation, and recognized this by including a Seminole character in RAIN IS NOT MY INDIAN NAME. But when we first heard about FRY BREAD and Kevin Noble Maillard, that was something else. When we discovered he is a member of the Seminole Nation, Mekusukey band and African American, that was something else altogether.

Ashleigh, 13: I keep reading this book, over and over. My mom has read it--by herself and then aloud to me and Vi, showing us the illustrations …

THANKU, POEMS OF GRATITUDE, by many authors--a review by Ashleigh, 13

I like poetry. I was attracted to this book because of the beautiful cover. The outline of a girl of Color blowing a dandelion that releases the names of the poets in rainbow colors. Yes, illustrator Marlena Myles (Spirit Lake Dakota/Mohegan/Muscokee Creek) did beautiful work.

This book contains a diversity of poems and poets, some of them Native. The first poem, "Giving Thanks," by Joseph Bruchac, is dedicated to the memory of Chief Jake Swamp, whose book GIVING THANKS, A NATIVE GOOD MORNING PRAYER, is in most of our homes and some of our schools. It's a Reading Rainbow book. Bruchac offer a shorter version that begins: "Thanksgiving is more/ that just one day, so a Mohawk elder/ said to me."
  The back of the book includes part of the Bruchac poem--love that girl's hair!
Th@nksgiving is in the background of this book. The poems, edited by Miranda Paul, say thanku to things big and small without validating the anti-Indigenous US myth.
Carole Lindstrom (Ani…