Thursday, November 15, 2007

Crossing the Panther's Path

One of my students was a somewhat reluctant reader for the last two years but came in the first week craving books on Native Americans. He's read them insatiably, even the 50 year old biographies. I have been looking for additional titles for him, and came across Elizabeth Adler's book. Just what I needed. For some reasons, many of the books are from the point of view of a girl, and are more about the settlers and the "evil" Indians. This is based on the true story of Billy Calder, who had an Irish father and a Mohawk mother, and who became an interpreter for Tecumseh and helped him try to win back land from the Americans.

This stars out with an arduous trek through the snow from Detroit to his parents' home, and keeps going with strategies, adventure, and battles. While it supported the Native Americans cause, neither the British were portrayed as evil, just with their own agendas. Billy learns a lot about the different tribes, and I think my student will really enjoy this.

Other titles that we've located this year that have been fairly successful were:
Carbone's Blood on the River
Cooney's The Ransom of Mercy Carter
Edmond's In The Hands of the Senecas
Keene's I Am Regina
McGraw's Moccasin Trail
O'Dell's Streams to the River, Rivers to the Sea
Pearsall's Crooked River
Richter's Light in the Forest
Speare's Sign of the Beaver

Combine this with two biographies, and that is a lot of reading! I am so proud of this student, who signed up for a public library card and has even gotten "in trouble" for reading during class. "The right book for the right child at the right time" is certainly working out in this case!

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous9:55 PM EST

    Hi there. Found your site on BlogCatalog, and I really like what I've read so far. I like that you can look at a book from your own perspective but still be able to honesty say whether or not a kid will like them. I'm an aspiring middle-grade novel writer myself, so I hope I'll get a review on your page someday!