I Sang You Down from the Stars

Tasha Spillett-Sumner, illus. by Michaela Goade. Little, Brown, $18.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-31-649316-1
“I loved you before I met you./ Before I held you in my arms,/ I sang you down from the stars,” begins Spillett-Sumner’s gentle tale, which shares, per an author’s note, “the traditional understanding of my Nation, the Inniniwak, and many other Indigenous peoples globally: that babies choose their parents.” As an Indigenous woman sings to the sky, a shooting star leads her to a white eagle feather, beginning her journey to create a “sacred medicine bundle” for her unborn child that’s filled with items from nature—a feather, sage and cedar, a “star blanket,” and a smooth stone from the river. When the child arrives, she relays how these items will keep the baby connected to their Native identity. Caldecott Medalist Goade (who is Tlingit) contributes enchantingly expansive, star-stippled landscapes done in watercolor and mixed media, with a semi-translucent ribbon of stars tracing the connection between “all living things.” A tender celebration of parenthood that will resonate with Native and non-Native readers alike. Back matter includes an author’s and an artist’s note. Ages 4–8. (Apr.)
Reviewed on : 02/25/2021
Release date: 04/06/2021
Genre: Children's
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