FOREST OF THE CLOUDED LEOPARD by Christopher A. Myers

FOREST OF THE CLOUDED LEOPARD

Age Range: 10 - 14
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KIRKUS REVIEW

 Kenchendai, a young Iban of Borneo, has turned his back on his people's traditional teachings. When the boy's father refuses to take his grandfather to a clinic after he has been gored by a wild boar, the old man dies and Kenchandai's rejection of the death rituals provokes the wrath of his father, who--as a result of a dream--travels to the ``doors of death'' deep in the rain forest. Despite his contempt for the old ways, Kenchendai is compelled to follow. He chooses his teacher as traveling companion, but quickly grows disillusioned with the man's flagrant disrespect for the life of the forest. Confronting his fear of both the spirits and starvation, the boy learns to survive in the wild alone. In striking prose, the authors evoke the lush atmosphere of the rain forest while exploring the boy's growing recognition of his true identity; by embracing his birthright, Kenchendai safeguards his people through another generation, both symbolically and literally. Though some readers may be confused by the way the real and spirit worlds shift and shift again in this primeval tale of passage, it offers fascinating insights into a little-known culture. (Fiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: April 1st, 1994
ISBN: 0-395-67408-5
Page count: 112pp
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15th, 1994




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