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SWEETGRASS BASKET by Marlene Carvell


by Marlene Carvell

Age Range: 9 - 14

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2005
ISBN: 0-525-47547-8
Publisher: Dutton

In her second novel, Carvell (Who Will Tell My Brother?, 2002) employs alternating voices to create a poignant verse novel telling the historically sensitive story of Mohawk sisters who were sent to the Carlisle Indian School after the death of their mother. Forced to abandon their language and all things from home, the sisters and the other students at Carlisle struggle to be true to their heritage. Marching wherever they go, learning menial tasks, being punished for displaying any remnants of their Indian life and strict enforcement of stringent rules create a disparaging environment. Mattie’s and Sarah’s struggle to survive amid intolerance and cruelty brings about a bittersweet ending. This satisfying read will awaken young readers to a situation often ignored in our history. (Fiction. 9-14)