Stone Age Boy
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Stone Age Boy

by Satoshi Kitamura
     
 

Step back 15,000 years as a modern boy enters a Stone Age village and learns a few prehistoric tricks of the trade.

One day a boy falls down a hole, and an amazing thing happens — when he wakes, he’s in a camp full of people wearing animal skins! Mixing flight of fancy with prehistoric facts, Satoshi Kitamura ushers us back to a time of

Overview

Step back 15,000 years as a modern boy enters a Stone Age village and learns a few prehistoric tricks of the trade.

One day a boy falls down a hole, and an amazing thing happens — when he wakes, he’s in a camp full of people wearing animal skins! Mixing flight of fancy with prehistoric facts, Satoshi Kitamura ushers us back to a time of surprising innovation and artistic expression, shown in cave paintings visible to this day.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Kitamura's (Me and My Cat?) invites readers to explore the Stone Age with this accomplished story of a boy who falls through a hole in his dull, gray environment and somehow emerges into a grassy, wild world. There he meets a girl: "I don't think I looked like any of the boys she knew," he says as she feels his navy-blue pullover, inspects his pale-blue sneakers and tries on his glasses. She leads him to her family's settlement, where "people had no knives or forks, no plastic-not even any metal." In step-by-step, captioned illustrations, readers observe how to start a fire; dry meat on wooden racks; and warm liquid "by putting a red-hot stone into a leather bag." The tribe also spears a reindeer and dances to celebrate. "I joined in on air guitar," the boy jokes, jamming in the background. Without superfluous gore, Kitamura depicts dead caribou and draws Lascaux-like cave paintings that acknowledge the importance of animals. (The author pictures mammoths and other fauna on the end pages too, but only a bear participates in the drama.) An imaginative way to kindle interest in, and admiration for, the people of a far distant era. Ages 4-8. (Nov.)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Children's Literature
On the framework of a young boy’s tale of being lost in--or dreaming himself into--the Stone Age, Kitamura has built an account of how people lived then. Across two pages, for example, are the detailed steps of making fire and tools as well as preparing animal skins and food, all described in words and illustrations. Our young adventurer watches hunters and fishermen in action, then celebrates their success with them. One day, his new friend, Om, takes him to the caves where there are incredible paintings. There also is a bear; and an encounter with it sends him back to the present time. Our narrator, now an archeologist, still looks for signs of that distant past. The final illustration may have an answer. This visual tale of man’s history is told with a light-hearted touch. Kitamura fills the end pages with colored drawings of animals and birds, some now extinct. His watercolors are naturalistic, informative, and engaging. There is even an index, along with an author’s note on personal experience with cave painting. A timeline helps set the adventure in historic perspective. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal

Gr 1-4
A modern boy tells how he trips in the woods and finds himself in a cave during the Stone Age. Om introduces him to her family and way of life, in spite of the fact that they don't understand one another's language. Many small drawings in ink and watercolor show how they made tools, used fire to cook their food, and hunted reindeer. These people have a surprisingly modern appearance, and the boy seems at home playing his air guitar at a celebration. Om shows him a cave, the walls of which are covered with lifelike animal paintings. A spread with the single word "Wow!" is just right. Evading a cave bear, the boy falls into a hole and returns to his own time. Years later, he becomes an archaeologist and searches for signs of Om's people. A time line and author's note give the historical basis of the story, and endpapers show different animals as they might have appeared in cave paintings. Show children the beautiful reproductions in Patricia Lauber's Painters of the Caves (National Geographic, 1998), and read this book along with Rafe Martin's Will's Mammoth (Putnam, l989) for a storytime of awe and wonder.
—Mary Jean SmithCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Kirkus Reviews
Waking after a sudden fall, a lad finds himself back in the Stone Age, where he's taken in by a peaceful extended family of hunters, tries his hand at flint-knapping and gets a glimpse of marvelous cave paintings. In Kitamura's cartoon art, the prehistoric folk look like members of a well-bathed hippie commune, but like the narrator, some young readers will by fascinated by the ingenious ways they shape stone, bone and wood into a variety of weapons, small decorations and tools. Waking up in the modern era after another fall, the child's experiences are dismissed as dreams-but they affect him so deeply that he grows up to be an archaeologist. Dream or not, the journey makes an engaging, lightweight tale with enough prehistorical information to rate a short index. A good choice for armchair archaeologists and time-travelers alike. (Picture book. 6-8)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780763634742
Publisher:
Candlewick Press
Publication date:
10/09/2007
Pages:
40
Product dimensions:
11.00(w) x 9.43(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Satoshi Kitamura has illustrated many picture books, including contributing to CARNIVAL OF THE ANIMALS: POEMS INSPIRED BY SAINT-SAENS' MUSIC, a BOOKLIST Top Ten Art Book for Youth. He lives in London.

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