cover image The Crying for a Vision

The Crying for a Vision

Walter Wangerin, Jr.. Simon & Schuster, $16 (279pp) ISBN 978-0-671-79911-3

Wangerin's (Branta and the Golden Stone) epic account of a boy's sacrifice to save a Native American nation from the aftermath of a near-apocalyptic war works both as myth and as a story of the Lakota people. Moves Walking, a young orphan with mysterious spiritual powers, is ostracized for his reluctance to learn hunting and battle skills. Ultimately, however, he must use his gifts to combat the blood lust of the warrior Fire Thunder. Maddened by unrequited love for Rattling Hail Woman (who becomes the wife of a star in the sky), Fire Thunder leads the Lakota nation into a tragic war with the Crow. Wangerin powerfully conveys the spiritual beliefs and traditions of the Lakota as he unfolds this stirring adventure. He deepens the complexity of the tale by incorporating brief accounts told by different characters, thus infusing his work with the flavor of oral storytelling. A memorable contribution. Ages 12-up. (Oct.)