YONDER MOUNTAIN

A CHEROKEE LEGEND

Chief Sky, looking for a new leader for his people, sends three young men to the top of the distant mountaintop, to bring him back what they find there. One, who goes part way up the mountain, finds lodes of valuable stones, and brings one back. The second goes a little farther, and returns after he finds forests of healing herbs. The last man brings nothing in his hands—he returns late, torn and bleeding, and tells that from the top of the mountain he could see beyond the valley and to the next mountain, where he saw a smoke signal calling for help. Chief Sky makes this man chief, saying, “We need one who has seen beyond the mountain to other people who are in need.” Bannon, who worked with the late Reverend Bushyhead and heard him tell this story in English and Cherokee, retells it here in clear and straightforward prose that reads well aloud. She includes a few words in Cherokee, repeated in a short glossary at the end. Though she says, “The translations have been specially written using the English alphabet so that you can sound them out,” there is no pronunciation guide for such words as “Yo:na” or “Uwoha?li.” A foreword by Joseph Bruchac sets this in a historical context, pointing out that this teaching story is not among those popularized by James Mooney’s classic 1900 translations of Cherokee stories, but is a classic told from generation to generation. Rodanas’s (The Little Drummer Boy, 2002, etc.) realistic color pencil and watercolor illustrations in rich autumn colors depict the specific dress and homes of the early Eastern Woodland Cherokee. Though this isn’t a title that will jump out at young readers, teachers looking for Native American folktales will appreciate this as a group read-aloud. (Folktale. 7-10)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2002

ISBN: 0-7614-5113-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Marshall Cavendish

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2002

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Readers will be waiting to see how Charlie faces his next challenge in a series that marks a lovely change of pace from the...

CHARLIE BUMPERS VS. THE TEACHER OF THE YEAR

From the Charlie Bumpers series , Vol. 1

Charlie Bumpers is doomed. The one teacher he never wanted in the whole school turns out to be his fourth-grade teacher.

Charlie recalls third grade, when he accidentally hit the scariest teacher in the whole school with his sneaker. “I know all about you, Charlie Bumpers,” she says menacingly on the first day of fourth grade. Now, in addition to all the hardships of starting school, he has gotten off on the wrong foot with her. Charlie’s dry and dramatic narrative voice clearly reveals the inner life of a 9-year-old—the glass is always half empty, especially in light of a series of well-intentioned events gone awry. It’s quite a litany: “Hitting Mrs. Burke in the head with the sneaker. The messy desk. The swinging on the door. The toilet paper. And now this—the shoe on the roof.” Harley has teamed once again with illustrator Gustavson (Lost and Found, 2012) to create a real-life world in which a likable kid must face the everyday terrors of childhood: enormous bullies, looming teachers and thick gym coaches with huge pointing fingers. Into this series opener, Harley magically weaves the simple lesson that people, even teachers, can surprise you.

Readers will be waiting to see how Charlie faces his next challenge in a series that marks a lovely change of pace from the sarcasm of Wimpy Kid. (Fiction. 7-10)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-56145-732-8

Page Count: 160

Publisher: Peachtree

Review Posted Online: Aug. 14, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2013

Did you like this book?

An uncomplicated opener, with some funny bits and a clear but not heavy agenda.

BOOKMARKS ARE PEOPLE TOO!

From the Here's Hank series , Vol. 1

Hank Zipzer, poster boy for dyslexic middle graders everywhere, stars in a new prequel series highlighting second-grade trials and triumphs.

Hank’s hopes of playing Aqua Fly, a comic-book character, in the upcoming class play founder when, despite plenty of coaching and preparation, he freezes up during tryouts. He is not particularly comforted when his sympathetic teacher adds a nonspeaking role as a bookmark to the play just for him. Following the pattern laid down in his previous appearances as an older child, he gets plenty of help and support from understanding friends (including Ashley Wong, a new apartment-house neighbor). He even manages to turn lemons into lemonade with a quick bit of improv when Nick “the Tick” McKelty, the sneering classmate who took his preferred role, blanks on his lines during the performance. As the aforementioned bully not only chokes in the clutch and gets a demeaning nickname, but is fat, boastful and eats like a pig, the authors’ sensitivity is rather one-sided. Still, Hank has a winning way of bouncing back from adversity, and like the frequent black-and-white line-and-wash drawings, the typeface is designed with easy legibility in mind.

An uncomplicated opener, with some funny bits and a clear but not heavy agenda. (Fiction. 7-9)

Pub Date: Feb. 14, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-448-48239-2

Page Count: 128

Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap

Review Posted Online: Dec. 11, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2014

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more