Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In his fifth Iktomi story, Goble sends the Sioux trickster flying on board a buzzard. Touchdown does not go as expected, however, as Iktomi cannot resist insulting the buzzard and is pitched head-first into a hollow tree. With his customary bold colors and pristine page design, the Caldecott Medalist strikingly presents Iktomi in eagle feathers on his way to a powwow. Less successful is the interactive text in this installment. Passages in gray type, according to an introductory note, aim to ``encourage listeners, young and old, to make comments''; these are generally innocuous and occasionally distracting. On the other hand, Iktomi's thoughts, rendered in small type next to the illustrations, cheapen the story with an injection of very low comedy (``They say Buzzard SMELLS his prey. . . . Did I forget my roll-on?''). Iktomi is not the only one to sink in this outing. Ages 4-7. (Mar.)
Children's Literature - Deborah Zink Roffino
Many Native American tales have a central troublemaker; the Sioux have Iktomi. Other tribes call him Coyote or Napi or Veho. He travels the Great Plains and covering them in half-truths, deceptions, and boldfaced lies. He pays dearly, but he never seems to learn. Readers laugh and learn from his very bad example and his skeptical view of life.
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
K-Gr 6-Once again his excessive pride brings the irrepressible Iktomi down- but this time the fall is really a long one. On his way to a powwow, and dressed to show off his great talent for Eagle Dancing, he comes to a river that is too wide to cross. He talks Buzzard into flying him across, but then makes fun of the bird's unattractive appearance. The result is a well-deserved comeuppance, which Iktomi (naturally) refuses to take to heart. Told with verve and humor, the text is beautifully augmented by Goble's India ink, watercolor, and gouche illustrations. The complex language won't deter young elementary students' comprehension, and older children who enjoy folklore that is a bit sophisticated will also be entertained. A sure hit where Goble's other Iktomi books have been popular, this is also a fine introduction to this traditional Lakota figure, an overconfident but lovable trickster.-Ann Welton, Terminal Park Elementary School, Auburn, WA