The Legend of Blue Jacket

The Legend of Blue Jacket

by Michael P. Spradlin, Ronald Himler, Ronald Himler
     
 

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He was only sixteen when the Shawnee Indians took him from his home. But he wasn't captured. He went willingly. And, after many years of proving his bravery in battle against the colonists, he was named war chief of the Shawnee. His name was Blue Jacket.

Here, told in riveting narrative and stunning, historically accurate illustrations, is the incredible

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Overview

He was only sixteen when the Shawnee Indians took him from his home. But he wasn't captured. He went willingly. And, after many years of proving his bravery in battle against the colonists, he was named war chief of the Shawnee. His name was Blue Jacket.

Here, told in riveting narrative and stunning, historically accurate illustrations, is the incredible story of a white boy who spent the first sixteen years of his life among white settlers and the rest of his life fighting them.

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 3-4-There was a Shawnee chief named Blue Jacket who was a great military leader in the late-18th and early-19th centuries, fighting alongside his people and the British against American settlers. That much seems documented. That he may or may not have been the son of a Virginia farmer, captured in his early teens seems more speculative. That he was a settler who left his family and culture behind willingly and excitedly "to see the land I had always wondered about," and that he grew into a warrior who fought relentless, bloody wars against his former people does not ring emotionally true in this fictionalized history of the man who could have been Blue Jacket. The author seems to stretch to avoid certain issues-the terror, hardship, and loneliness, and the inevitable wrench that joining another culture prompts, whether that defection is forcible or chosen. Although this book is clearly a well-researched labor of love, beautifully and accurately illustrated with Himler's paintings, the author glosses over the essential story.-Dona Ratterree, New York City Public Schools Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Historian and publishing-industry veteran Spradlin has tackled a contentious chunk of history and legend for his first children�s book. Blue Jacket was a war chief of the Shawnee in the late-18th century. Though there are no personal records to prove it, some historians believe that he was also Marmaduke van Swearingen, the son of Virginia farmers who was allegedly captured by the Shawnee and adopted into the tribe. Using as much evidence as he could gather, and using first-hand anecdotal reports of similar experiences, Spradlin has written a first-person, memoir-like tale of what he believes may have been the life of Blue Jacket. The text reads nicely, though it is long and unvarying, and sits heavy on the page. Himler�s accompanying impressionistic watercolors in warm hues are well-executed but have little child appeal, and do little to enliven the sedate narrative. Young fans of historical accounts of this time period may yet be drawn to this, as it is one of the only (if not the only) version available to them of Blue Jacket. It is to be hoped, then, that they will read Spradlin�s preface, which outlines the debate over this figure. For specialized collections only. (Picture book. 8-12)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780688158354
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
11/28/2002
Edition description:
1ST
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.80(w) x 10.20(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile:
890L (what's this?)
Age Range:
5 - 9 Years

Meet the Author

Michael P. Spradlin is the author of the New York Times bestseller It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Zombies!, Every Zombie Eats Somebody Sometime, and Jack and Jill Went Up to Kill, as well as several children's picture books, the novels and manga volumes in the Spy Goddess series, and the Youngest Templar novels. He lives in Michigan with his family.

Ronald Himler has illustrated more than one hundred books for children, including The Lily Cupboard by Shulamith Levey Oppenheim, Hook Moon Night by Faye Gibbons, and The Wall and Fly Away Home, both by Eve Bunting. His work also appears in art galleries throughout the Southwest, where he is highly acclaimed for his portrayal of the Plains Indians. Mr. Himler lives in the desert just outside Tucson, Arizona.

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