The Children of the Morning Light: Wampanoag Tales as Told by Manitonquat

Manitonquat, Author, Medicine, Author, Story Medicine, Author Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing $16.95 (80p) ISBN 978-0-02-765905-4
This inspired collection, the children's book debut of its author and illustrator, explores the cultural traditions and history of the Wampanoag, a Native American tribe from Massachusetts. Manitonquat (Medicine Story), a Wampanoag elder, spiritual leader and storyteller, narrates 11 sparkling tales, many set down in print for the first time. Rich in meaning and flashing with humor, the entries begin with ``Song of Creation,'' in which Kishtannit, the Big Spirit, sings up time, space and movement, followed by the sun, moon and ocean. Subsequent tales measure human experience--the dilemma of death, war, the four seasons, migration--and beneath the dancing language lies a thought-provoking solemnity. Arquette, supplying full-page acrylics interspersed throughout the volume, captures her subjects--both earthly and divine--in an unusual combination of softly smudged contours and bold starkness. This mixture of natural and supernatural faithfully reflects the text. Ages 6-up. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 04/04/1994
Release date: 04/01/1994
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