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Moccasin Thunder: American Indian Stories for Today Hardcover – October 4, 2005

3.3 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Grade 9 Up–The young people's experiences in these 10 short stories will resonate with Native readers and inform and affect non-Natives as well. Joy Harjo writes about a boarding-school experience. Sherman Alexie talks about the slow painful separation and divorce of parents, and the needs of a boy to be seen/heard/taught by his father. Cynthia Leitich Smith shows an example of the everyday struggles Native people have with stereotypes, and the pain it causes on all sides. Richard Van Camp offers a glimpse into a life of addiction, loss, and the struggle to overcome poverty. Linda Hogan demonstrates the pride, generosity, and determination of an elder living on the reservation selling eggs and grain to make ends meet. Lee Francis shares a story of self-realization, oral tradition, and ways things are passed from one generation to the next. This distinguished anthology offers powerful, beautifully written stories that are thoughtful and important for teens to hear.–Marlette Grant-Jackson, Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA
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From Booklist

Gr. 8-11. Ten stirring contemporary short stories by Indian writers, including Linda Hogan, Louise Erdrich, Sherman Alexie, and Susan Power, show teens--lost, loving, funny, uncertain--coming of age on the reservation and in the city. Joseph Bruchac's Abenaki youth mocks the "noble" tourist stereotypes of beads and feathers; he is bitter because he is "a homegrown immigrant in his own land." Richard Van Camp tells of a high-school dope dealer who wants to be a teacher but messes up. In Joy Harjo's story, two girls at boarding school go wrong, but the principal helps them. Often tempering the harsh realism of poverty, drink, drugs, racism, and, sometimes, sexual abuse in the stories is often a grandmother, a source of hope--not perfectly wise, but a caring link with rich tradition. Resentful of patronizing charity as well as prejudice, these strong older women help move the characters toward a deep spiritual connection. Readers will welcome the change from generic reverential images of primitives stuck in the past. Hazel Rochman
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTeen (October 4, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0066239575
  • ISBN-13: 978-0066239576
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,138,593 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Because of the way our world is, these may be the first Native American fiction stories young adults will be exposed to. Up to now, they have only heard folk tales in their social studies classes and watched insulting films a la Disney. What impression do we want to give them? I do not believe in censorship or hiding reality from our youth, but do Native people want white children to get the impression (from these stories) that there's little more than this? The stories contain vocabulary you may want to preview first: four letter words, cum, drunks, violence against women, etc. I am a teacher and professor in a very liberal area, where minority literature is valued and often used, but I would think twice about using this book with our students. I would not hesitate to use the story by Linda Hogan called "Crow" and perhaps the one by Bruchac, but the others are indeed raw and paint a different kind of stereotype we probably needn't promote. I'm also confused by the choice of photograph on the cover: it's a blurry picture of a dancer whose head is not visible. When I use Native American literature, I often use literature meant for adults by the same authors, memoir excerpts, poetry and film. I would include Momaday's The Way to Rainy Mountain, stories and poems by Luci Tapahonso, and other brilliant Native writers; not stories about drunk Indians and selling drugs.
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Format: Hardcover
The stories in this collection, all written by Native authors, go a long way towards countering the idea that Native Americans vanished long ago. Fresh and vibrant, you and your teens will enjoy each one.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was highly recommended to me, and I looked forward to reading it. However, I found the stories uneven, and while some of the them were quite good, others were forgettable. I passed it on to a friend to get her reaction, and haven't heard back yet.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Sad book for a 9 year old !
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