FICTION
The Forever Sky
Minnesota Historical Society. Apr. 2019. 32p. Tr $16.95. ISBN 9781681340982.
COPY ISBN

Gr 3 Up–After the loss of their grandmother, two Ojibwe brothers find solace in the traditional stories of their community. Niigaanii brings his younger brother, Bineshiinh, to the meadow to look at the stars. As the boys reflect on their love for their recently departed grandmother, Niigaanii shares some of what he has learned from his uncle. He relates how the stars form shapes of spirits and points out the Milky Way, the Path of Souls, that those who have died follow to join their ancestors. Another night, the brothers witness the Northern Lights and imagine the spirits of their relatives dancing across the sky. Finally, other family members accompany the boys to stargaze, and together they are comforted by the spirit of their grandmother Nooko. Peacock’s (Ojibwe) lyrical text has a soothing, meditative quality that perfectly complements Lee’s (Ojibwe-Lakota) impressionistic, celestially inspired illustrations, which saturate every spread with color and movement. For Ojibwe families, this book is a beautiful testament to the storytelling tradition and to their tribal beliefs, while any family grieving a loved one will take solace in this message of connection across time and space.

VERDICT With stunning illustrations and a welcome message of comfort for those who have lost a loved one, this book is a uniquely lovely addition that deserves space in most library collections.

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