BROTHER TO THE NAVAJO by Lynn Gessner

BROTHER TO THE NAVAJO

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KIRKUS REVIEW

It seems relatively easy: if young Paul Corbett's pretty widowed Ma would only take a shine to nice Indian-trader Fletch, the homeless Corbetts could stay at Shikanto Trading Post on the Navajo Reservation--where Paul's getting on to Indian ways, backward little-brother Jackie is blossoming, and even worthless Uncle Duke is shaping up. But first Ma has to be disabused of her hopes of marrying a smooth-talking rancher; and then she has to think that staying on at the post will enable Zahalani, Fletch's cook/housekeeper, to marry the light of her life. With Fletch pulling the strings, and Paul putting the appropriate thoughts in Ma's head, she does come around. Meanwhile we've learned a good deal about the operation of a trading post and picked up some notion of how, in 1906, the Navajos lived (managing by craft, sometimes, what whites gain in other ways). And by being a good sport--not by excelling at sports--Paul gains acceptance among the Navajo boys. It's likely, though, that girls (dare we say it?) will be more interested in Ma's turns of thought than boys will--a limiting factor in what is otherwise a worthy if unexceptional glimpse of reservation life.

Pub Date: Dec. 1st, 1980
Publisher: Elsevier/Nelson