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Children's LiteratureMyths of ten goddesses are presented in this elegantly formatted book. Representing ancient cultures from throughout the world, these deities include Changing Woman (Navajo), Macha (Celtic), Sedna (Inuit), Kuan Yin (Buddhist), Ix Chel (Mayan), Amaterasu (Shinto), Inanna (Sumarian), Durga (Hindu), and Mawu (Fon). Each goddess is introduced with a factual paragraph explaining her place in the beliefs of her people. This is followed by a five to six page narrative describing her birth (or creation), her heroic deeds, and her contributions to the life of her tribe. A full-page collage portrait enhances the image of each deity. In the back of the book, lengthy notes from both the author and artist provide interesting background information and add to the understanding of the text and illustrations. Tchana explains her motivation for researching and writing the tales. Hyman discusses her unusual collage techniques and the materials she used, such as handmade paper, bits of fabric, fleece from her own sheep, seeds from her garden, Kleenex, tracing paper, and toilet paper. She provides many details about specific pictures, seeming to invite the reader to go back and take a closer look. A list of sources is provided for those who wish to know more about these goddesses. 2006, Holiday House, Ages 10 to 16.
—Phyllis Kennemer, Ph.D.