An Inuit craftsman who teaches traditional knowledge at Nunavut Arctic College describes the construction of a traditional Inuit ice house—an iglu—and a long sled called a qamutiik.
This intriguing title provides step-by-step directions using customary methods and modern tools and materials. These directions are illustrated with drawings for each step, from cutting and arranging blocks for the iglu to the lacing and tying of the boards of the sled. Along with his instructions, the author provides some background, including descriptions of the materials used historically and pitfalls to avoid. He makes clear that designs vary according to region and local conditions. The Inuktitut version of this book—an adaptation of a poster series—is available free of charge on the Web; this presentation is delivered in both Inuktitut (in Inuktitut script) and English. The color photographs will help readers visualize the process and imagine the product, but some additional background is probably still necessary. The author and illustrator take for granted that readers understand the spiral construction of an iglu, for instance, and it is not clear whether the final block is set in place from inside or out.
An obvious purchase for schools with curricular connections, this will have special appeal to young people interested in wilderness survival, whether armchair travelers or experienced campers, as well as lovers of Newbery winner Julie of the Wolves. (Nonfiction. 10-16)