The Hero Twins: Against the Lords of Death: A Mayan Myth

The Hero Twins: Against the Lords of Death: A Mayan Myth

by Dan Jolley
     
 

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Can two young boys outsmart and outwit the lords of death? The Hero Twins, Hunahpu and Xbalanque, were blessed by the Mayan gods with special powers. But their incredible skill at playing Pok-ta-Pok, the Mayan ball game, angers the lords of Xibalba, rulers of the land of the dead. When the lords challenge them to a Pok-ta-Pok game in Xibalba, the twins know they

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Overview

Can two young boys outsmart and outwit the lords of death? The Hero Twins, Hunahpu and Xbalanque, were blessed by the Mayan gods with special powers. But their incredible skill at playing Pok-ta-Pok, the Mayan ball game, angers the lords of Xibalba, rulers of the land of the dead. When the lords challenge them to a Pok-ta-Pok game in Xibalba, the twins know they must use all of their powers and cunning to defeat the lords' many challenges. Will they survive the land of the dead?

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Louanne Jacobs
Author Dan Jolley brings comic credibility to the "Graphic Myths and Legends" series. He is an award-winning writer for both DC Comics and TokyoPop. Young readers of comic series will be impressed that he has also scripted a manga project and is involved in writing a novelization of the soon-to-be-released screen version of Ironman. In this addition to the series, Jolley introduces young readers to one of many Mayan myths involving the Hero Twins. The book begins in the present day with a boy who is assigned homework reading about the myth which he reluctantly begins—only to be quickly drawn into the familiar boy-superhero motif and taking the reader along with him. The two brothers, consummate tricksters who have recognizable superhero powers, travel to the underworld to compete against the Lords of Xibalba in a series of ballgames—challenges which their father had previously failed, resulting in his death. Through clever trickery, quick thinking, and the use of their powers, the boys are able to overcome knife-balls, bloodthirsty bats, and even, literally, losing one of their heads! Comic book readers will be delighted by the rich and engaging illustrations which integrate authentic Mayan costuming and color palettes into the graphics. Reviewer: Louanne Jacobs
School Library Journal

Gr 3-6 -Hunaphu and Xbalanque are characters from a Mayan myth in the Popul Vuh . Their special powers include their skills at playing the ball game Pok-ta-Pok. The competitive rulers of the underworld are not happy and challenge the twins to a game, planning to destroy them. After crossing a river of blood and a river of pus ("This is so gross," says Hunaphu) to meet the Lords of Death, the young men must survive nights in increasingly dangerous houses, including one filled with razors and one filled with bloodthirsty bats. Readers should delight in the creepy action, especially the final game in which Xbalanque's head is used as the ball. The bright colors and strong lines of the cartoon-style illustrations add to the story's irreverent tone. A narrative of a contemporary boy assigned to read the myth for school begins and ends the story. Though slightly corny, this framing device may draw in readers resistant to the historical or "educational" theme. Children may not pick this up on their own, but once they begin they'll find much to enjoy.-Lisa Goldstein, Brooklyn Public Library, NY

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781580138925
Publisher:
Graphic Universe
Publication date:
02/01/2009
Series:
Graphic Myths and Legends Series
Pages:
48
Sales rank:
876,370
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.20(d)
Lexile:
GN470L (what's this?)
Age Range:
9 - 13 Years

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