The Sad Night: The Story of an Aztec Victory and a Spanish Loss

The Sad Night: The Story of an Aztec Victory and a Spanish Loss

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by Sally Schofer Mathews
     
 

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“This sensitive treatment of La Noche Triste, or The Sad Night, the last battle the Aztecs won against the Spaniards, is a highly effective melding of graceful, lucid text and stylized art. Designed to resemble Aztec codices, the illustrations appear in double-page strips above the bordered text. Beginning with the Aztec migration to Tenochtitlán (now

Overview


“This sensitive treatment of La Noche Triste, or The Sad Night, the last battle the Aztecs won against the Spaniards, is a highly effective melding of graceful, lucid text and stylized art. Designed to resemble Aztec codices, the illustrations appear in double-page strips above the bordered text. Beginning with the Aztec migration to Tenochtitlán (now Mexico City), the history of this people is traced through their final conquest by Cortés’s forces. . . . This title has the distinction of combining myth with historical fact in a particularly successful manner. An engaging introduction to Mexican history.”—School Library Journal

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Expertly weaving dialogue into her absorbing account, Mathews chronicles the fateful encounter that paved the way for the Spaniards' conquest of Mexico more than 400 years ago. As she sets the stage, Mathews explains how the Aztecs, under Moctezuma, vanquished other tribes to establish an expansive empire based on the island of Tenochtitlan, now Mexico City. When Spanish soldiers entered the city in 1519, Moctezuma mistook their leader, Hernan Cortes, for a god and offered him gold and jewels. The arrival of a second fleet of Spanish ships led to the battle that took place on ``The Sad Night''; Moctezuma was killed and the Spaniards, attempting to escape with a cache of gold, were chased and defeated by the Aztecs. Mathews neatly distills the intricate details of this skirmish, observing that there were many casualties on both sides, and that the victors ``did not know that this was the last battle they would win.'' Inspired by the few Aztec codices that survived the Spanish conquest, Mathews's dynamic ink and electric-hued watercolor art plays a strong role in the telling of this intriguing story. Endnotes succinctly encapsulate the rise and fall of the Aztec empire, and a brief discussion of Aztec symbols and calendars includes striking examples. Ages 6-9. (Apr.)
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6-This sensitive treatment of La Noche Triste, or The Sad Night, the last battle the Aztecs won against the Spaniards, is a highly effective melding of graceful, lucid text and stylized art. Designed to resemble Aztec codices (most of which were destroyed by the Spaniards), the illustrations appear in double-page strips above the bordered text. Beginning with the Aztec migration to Tenochtitln (now Mexico City), the history of this people is traced through their final conquest by Corts's forces. Though the figures in the paintings are small, the action is clearly discernible. Indeed, children can ``read'' the story from these expressive illustrations. The final three pages of the book give more detailed information on the Aztecs and Corts, including an explanation of the Aztec calendar. Similar in narrative and illustrative style to Deborah Nourse Lattimore's Why There Is No Arguing in Heaven (1989) and The Flame of Peace (1987, both HarperCollins), this title has the distinction of combining myth with historical fact in a particularly successful manner. An engaging introduction to Mexican history.-Ann Welton, Terminal Park Elementary School, Auburn, WA
From the Publisher
"A highly effective melding of graceful, lucid text and stylized art . . . An engaging introduction to Mexican history." School Library Journal

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780618117451
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
03/19/2001
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
40
Sales rank:
318,653
Product dimensions:
(w) x (h) x 0.11(d)
Lexile:
950L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 7 Years

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Sad Night: The Story of an Aztec Victory and a Spanish Loss 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is one of my kids' favorite books we read to them then they read, from ~6 onward . Tells the story of Aztecs/Moctezuma and battle with the Spanish invaders, the founding of Mexico City. Battle violence, but true story. I went to an Aztec exhibit at the British Museum in London, and was amazed how much I already knew from reading this book. Great illustrations throughout book. Just bought 3 more copies - for middle school library and Social Studies teacher (Aztec unit in 6th grade Maryland) and one as excellent, very original gift.