In the Footsteps of Crazy Horse by Joseph Marshall III | SLJ Review

InthefootMARSHALL, Joseph, III. In the Footsteps of Crazy Horse. 176p. Abrams/Amulet. Nov. 2015. Tr $16.95. ISBN 9781419707858. Gr 4-8–In this novel that seamlessly integrates Lakota history and oral tradition, Marshall takes readers along for a road trip with Jimmy and his maternal grandfather as they embark on a “vision journey,” visiting famous landmarks, monuments, and landscapes integral to the life of the great warrior and leader Crazy Horse. Jimmy, a young Lakota boy, struggles with fitting in on his reservation because he does not look like the other Lakota boys; he has light hair, blue eyes, and his father is of Scottish decent. Grandpa Nyles sees an opportunity to introduce Jimmy to another Lakota who had fair hair and light skin—the famous Crazy Horse. Over the course of their trip, Grandpa Nyles recounts history and stories about the life of the Lakota hero and the events that shaped him into a powerful leader, including famous battles and standoffs against the white settlers. Although many books have been written about Crazy Horse, Marshall transports readers back in time through Grandfather’s stories. Italicized passages covering Crazy Horse’s childhood, adolescence, and transformation into the famed Lakota symbol of courage and wisdom are distinguished from the modern-day narrative and achieve an immediacy and emotional resonance that most history books fail to capture. As the book progresses, Jimmy and readers learn about an important period of American history from the perspective of the Lakota; readers will walk away with the sober knowledge that in war, there are no winners. As Jimmy and his grandfather’s journey comes to an end, the boy has gained much more than a history lesson—he learns a great deal about courage, sacrifice, and the ties that connect him to his ancestors. VERDICT A moving narrative that should be required reading for all students of American history.–Amy Zembroski, Indian Community School, Franklin, WI This review was published in School Library Journal's October 2015 issue.
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Hap Hagood

There is another very good book about the life of Crazy Horse that should be required reading in our High Schools. "Crazy Horse: The Strange Man of the Oglalas" A Biography by Mari Sandoz, published in 1961.

Posted : Oct 15, 2015 08:17



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