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The Porcupine Year (Birchbark House) Paperback – September 14, 2010
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Top Customer Reviews
It's 1852 and 12-year-old Omakayas and her Ojibwe family are traveling west to escape the expansion of the white settlers encroaching on their land. In trying to decide where to go next, the family and their companions must choose a route. At last they decide to go north to be reunited with family there. All too soon the trip turns more perilous than anyone expected. There are other tribes to avoid, lost children to take care of, fires to escape, and a traitor whose actions bring about the death of a beloved character. Still, through it all Omakayas keeps a clear head and a loving heart.Read more ›
Omakayas and her family face many hardships throughout their journey. Omakayas and her brother, Quill, are almost killed in the rushing waters of a swollen river; their provisions for winter are stolen by an evil French trapper; and Old Tallow, Omakayas' elder, dies in a battle with a bear. Omakayas also becomes a woman during the hard winter they endure in the forest.
Through all of this, Omakayas discovers first love, the great power of storytelling, and her own inner strength.
THE PORCUPINE YEAR is the third installment in Erdrich's series of Omakayas and her family. Those who have read the first two novels will be happily reunited with the main character and follow her on new adventures. The chapters are short and flow well together. The illustrations also add to the humor and drama of the story.
Erdrich states in her author's note that Omakayas' story will continue into a fourth novel set in the 1860's. I am sure fans of the series will be excited to see what becomes of Omakayas as she continues her journey into adulthood.
Reviewed by: LadyJay
Omakayas's in-betweenness is mirrored by the exile of her family. After being pushed off Lake Superior's Madeline Island (the Island of the Golden-Breasted Woodpecker) by the United States government in order to make room for white settlers, Omakayas's family is on the move, hoping to rejoin the rest of their extended family near the Lake of the Woods in northern Minnesota.
Their journey is fraught with dangers and marked by growing responsibilities for Omakayas and her younger brother, Pinch. The novel opens with an alternating harrowing and humorous episode, which begins with the siblings losing control of their canoe in a rapid-filled river and culminates with Pinch's painful encounter with a porcupine. The boy's connection to the porcupine, which becomes his close companion, also results in his renaming as Quill. With his new name seems to come a new, more mature personality, as Omakayas's bad-mouthed, troublemaking little brother continues to exhibit new thoughtfulness, maturity and skill as a hunter and trapper.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Absolutely love the book and the series! Vivid and wonderfully woven storytelling!Published 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
I loved all 4 of the Birchbark series books. They were written for children, but within the stories was a lot of material about the Ojibwe culture. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Biblical student
I don't care for historical fiction. I mean what is that anyway? Real fakeness...lol. The author was predictable and just because she is part native doesn't make her anymore able... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Karen Morgan
This book gives the reader great insight into the life-style, attitudes and cultural values of out First Nation friends. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Richard R. Roach
Picked this for my kid's for they're AR reading. I bought it because they're Native American's and it's hard to find a book that shows a more "real" picture of the daily... Read morePublished 21 months ago by Amazon Customer
I have read many of the books that Ms. Erdrich has written. Each one is amazing in it's own way. With this book you will be swept away by the danger, romance, sacrifice and drama... Read morePublished on June 19, 2014 by Judy
I disliked the whole book. To many tales-to much unknown indian language. Dictionary should have been at the beginning of the book. I could not recommend this bookPublished on June 9, 2014 by Brent L. Godfrey
I bought the first book in this series for my 10 year old daughter. One day she left it in the bathroom and I happened to pick it up. Read morePublished on February 19, 2014 by ButterRum