French (Little Inchkin, 1994, etc.) has created a visual treat, based on a Miwok myth. Coyote, who created the world and all its creatures, calls a council of the animals and invites them to create a ""Lord of the Animals,"" who will ""rule over us."" The deer wants the creation to have antlers, the goat wishes for horns, the eagle believes it must have wings. Annoyed by the bickering, Coyote has each of them attempt to fashion a model from river clay. Among them, only Coyote stays awake, finishes his creature, and gives him life--the first Miwok Indian and ""Lord of the Animals,"" as cunning as Coyote. More compelling than the rather ordinary story is the dramatic geometric art, reminiscent of Southwestern weaving, pottery, and basketwork. Richly patterned, stylized animals and bands of color surround and enclose the text. Arresting.