Frog Girl

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Overview

When frogs suddenly vanish from a lake behind a village in the Northwest Coast, a nearby volcano awakens and an Indian girl is called to a dangerous adventure.

Summoned to a spectacular world beneath the lake, the girl is questioned by "Grandmother" about the disappearance of her "children." Just who is this mysterious old woman? And what will happen if her children are not returned? What follows both answers--and deepens--the mystery.

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Overview

When frogs suddenly vanish from a lake behind a village in the Northwest Coast, a nearby volcano awakens and an Indian girl is called to a dangerous adventure.

Summoned to a spectacular world beneath the lake, the girl is questioned by "Grandmother" about the disappearance of her "children." Just who is this mysterious old woman? And what will happen if her children are not returned? What follows both answers--and deepens--the mystery.

Careful attention is paid to historical detail both in the story and in the vibrant illustrations. Frog Girl follows the rich mythic traditions of the Haida, Tlingit, and other Native peoples of the pacific Northwest Coast, whose stories often tell of individuals cast mysteriously into parallel worlds inhabited by animals in human form.

When the frogs suddenly vanish from the lake behind her village, a young Native American girl is led to the frog village underneath the lake and learns what she must do to save both the frogs and her own people.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This original tale, based on Pacific Northwest myth, in which frogs are being abducted from a local lake, "will be welcomed by fans of folklore and Native American literature," wrote PW. Ages 5-7. (Mar.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Lewis (Storm Boy) once again dips into the wealth of visual and mythic traditions of the Pacific Northwest coastal peoples to create a suspenseful original tale. Here, a chief's daughter witnesses two boys abducting all but one of the frogs in a nearby lake, and is led by the lone frog to a parallel world where she tells what she knows to the frog people's grandmother. Emerging to find that everyone has fled from an erupting volcano, the girl rescues the captive frogs and returns them to the lake. A sudden rainstorm then puts out the fires, saving her village. Lewis's tale has a sophisticated edge: by dropping visual hints rather than spelling everything out, he adds layers of mystery to the story. Readers may speculate, for instance (and confirm their predictions in the detailed concluding author's note), whether the old woman, who hides her face behind a conical hat that emits smoke and lives in a house with a hot, rumbling floor, has anything to do with the volcano's eruption. Lewis's precise, distinctive brushwork echoes the highly stylized Native American totems and masks, and his use of color is arresting. The vivid reds of the elaborate totems, traditional button blanket and tribal canoes form a dynamic contrast to the subtle grays and greens of the pebbled beaches, volcano and dark pines. Lewis's tale will be welcomed by fans of folklore and Native American literature, particularly those with an interest in the art and traditions of the Pacific Northwest. Ages 4-10. (Oct.) FYI: A portion of the book's proceeds will be donated to the Haida Gwaii Rediscovery program for tribal youth.
Children's Literature - Joan Carris
Using mythic elements common to Northwest Coast lore, Lewis has created a story with a Haida chief's daughter as heroine. Called "Sister" by a lone frog survivor, she follows this frog to its underwater kingdom where she meets Volcano Woman, disguised as the grandmother of all the missing frogs. Impressed by what she has seen, Frog Girl rescues the captured frogs and tells her fellow villagers, "They're our sisters and brothers. We should treat them so." The spare, eloquent text combine with powerful illustrations to make the point that we share this earth with others whom we owe both courtesy and respect. 1999 (orig.
School Library Journal
Gr 1-4--As in Storm Boy (Beyond Words, 1995), Lewis tells an original tale based on elements of the mythology of Native peoples of the Pacific Northwest. A chief's daughter spots two boys trapping frogs near a lake. One frog, who is overlooked, takes her to a deserted village beneath the lake. There, the frog (now a girl) introduces her to Grandmother, who mourns the disappearance of her children and whose sadness causes a volcano to erupt. The girl returns to her home, frees the captives, and saves her village. Extensive background notes explain how authentic folklore motifs are woven into the story and artwork. For the most part, the story can stand alone, with the illustrations playing a large part in the narrative. Without the notes, though, readers may not know that the grandmother is not only Frog Woman, but also Volcano Woman. Still, the molten lava that flows in her great house and the way her grief somehow sets off the eruption convey the sense of the connection, if not the details. The matriarch's face is never shown, adding to the mysterious atmosphere. The artwork is splendid. Vivid green frog images adorn totem poles in the underwater world, injecting a sense of wonder into the magical journey beneath the lake. The bold, well-designed pages will carry well in a group setting, and the language is simple and spare, well suited for reading aloud.--Steven Engelfried, West Linn Public Library, OR
Kirkus Reviews
Based on the traditions of the Northwest Pacific native people, this engrossing tale warns of the consequences of man manipulating nature.

When a young girl travels magically to the underworld of the frogs, she is warned by "Grandmother" that an impending volcano is the consequence of the girl's people stealing frogs from the lake. The girl returns, in the nick of time, to rescue her people from the lava and discovers the frogs that boys in her village have stolen. When she sets them free, Grandmother is appeased, and rain squelches the volcano's fire. The illustrations set the tone of this book: Deep greens, rich maroons, and dark grays, along with the looming faces of the totems, create a seriousness and a sense of foreboding. An afterword provides information about the folklore on which the story is based, and mythic motives within the tale. It's exquisite and resonant.

From the Publisher
• By the award-winning author/illustrator of best-seller Storm Boy• Includes a section on traditional story motifs of the Pacific Northwest coast native peoples"A suspenseful original tale.... Lewis's precise, distinctive brushwork echoes the highly stylized Native American totems and masks, and his use of color is arresting." -Publishers Weekly
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781552851937
  • Publisher: Whitecap Books, Limited
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 10 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.22 (w) x 10.98 (h) x 0.14 (d)

Meet the Author

PAUL OWEN LEWIS lives near Seattle, Washington, and is the author/illustrator of eight books. When not stargazing, he is visiting schools and conferences across North America.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
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