From School Library Journal
Kindergarten-Grade 4–In this variant of a Tlingit legend, the headman's beautiful daughter rejects all suitors, proclaiming to one who has slightly bulging eyes, Why I would sooner marry a frog from our lake! That night, a handsome stranger with slightly bulging eyes and long fingers leads her down a row of steps under the lake surface to join the Frog People. The rest of the story relates how her parents try to get her back. Bright swaths of watercolors illuminate the landscapes and backgrounds. The blankets that the Native People wear are mostly a solid color, although, historically, the Chilkat blanket had long fringes and was adorned with abstract designs and animal patterns that represented either the raven or eagle clan, or a family. The chief has a full beard that looks more typical of a Viking, and his skin color varies, even within an individual depiction of his face. An additional purchase.–Kirsten Cutler, Sonoma Library, CA
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PreS-Gr. 2. In Kimmel's retelling of a Tlingit tale, a village headman's beautiful daughter rejects all her potential suitors: "I would sooner marry a frog from our lake," she tells one unfortunate hopeful. Then comes a young man whom she finds irresistibly handsome, despite his bulging eyes. The suitor belongs to the Frog People, and the enamored girl follows him to his underwater kingdom and happily marries. Her bereft parents threaten the frogs until their daughter is returned, but the girl misses her husband and goes back to his watery world. The story (which may be too long for sharing at one sitting) is gracefully told, and preschoolers will enjoy the shape-shifting magic and cultural details, which are extended in the uncluttered paintings of villagers in Tlingit costume. Still, it's older children (and teens) who will relate most to the parental intolerance for boundary crossing: "It is unnatural for a human girl to live among frogs. They must marry their own kind and so must you." Suggest this for discussions with a wide age group. Source notes are appended. Gillian Engberg
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