Dragonfly's Tale

Kristina Rodanas, Author Clarion Books $17 (32p) ISBN 978-0-395-57003-6
Based on Zuni tribal lore, this picture book blends creation myth with a timeless (and timely) message about conservation. The village of Hawikuh has been blessed by the Corn Maiden spirits and enjoys perennially bountiful harvests. To show off their wealth the village's head chief and elders plan what amounts to a huge food fight--much to the Corn Maidens' disgust. In retribution the spirits send famine to Hawikuh, which drives away everyone except an abandoned boy and girl. The boy fashions a butterfly-like creature out of a corn husk, and the magical insect comes to life to win the Corn Maidens' favor and return good fortune to the village. ``To this day, in early summer--when the corn is beginning to bloom--the dragonfly appears.'' Rodanas's telling deftly mixes mysticism and moral, imparting a valuable lesson about respect for the environment. Her paintings feature the honeyed hues of corn and clay, often splashed with brilliant red. Zuni pottery and native dress figure prominently in several scenes against a rich background of sweeping New Mexico landscape. Ages 5-8. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 03/02/1992
Release date: 03/01/1992
Genre: Children's
Prebound-Glued - 32 pages - 978-0-613-06557-3
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-7807-5033-3
Paperback - 32 pages - 978-0-395-72076-9
Prebound-Sewn - 29 pages - 978-0-606-07446-9
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