The Shaman's Nephew: A Life in the Far North

Overview

When Jewish author/storyteller Sheldon Oberman met Inuit artist/hunter Simon Tookoome, he knew the encounter was special. Still, he had no idea their meeting would result in an amazing collaboration that would span a decade. Through the use of many tape recordings and translations, Sheldon has painstakingly woven the threads of a remarkable man's life into a book for all to treasure.

With Tookoome's drawings to enhance the text, Oberman has managed to express the cadence and ...

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Overview

When Jewish author/storyteller Sheldon Oberman met Inuit artist/hunter Simon Tookoome, he knew the encounter was special. Still, he had no idea their meeting would result in an amazing collaboration that would span a decade. Through the use of many tape recordings and translations, Sheldon has painstakingly woven the threads of a remarkable man's life into a book for all to treasure.

With Tookoome's drawings to enhance the text, Oberman has managed to express the cadence and voice of one of the last of the Inuit to live the traditional nomadic life in the Arctic. The Shaman's Nephew magically transports readers to a cold climate that warms and grows more familiar with every turn of the page.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Although it's designed for children, The Shaman's Nephew would make a wonderful addition to the collection of anyone interested in Canadian Inuit studies or in good oldfashioned storytelling. Tookoome shared a number of traditional tales (through an interpreter, since he speaks no English) to Oberman, a Canadian writer and storyteller. The stories are beautifully captured, and are an important link to the old ways of the nomadic peoples of the Canadian Arctic. Tookoome has never had an art lesson, but his paintings glow with power and mysticism; Oberman compares them to Chagall and Miro, but if anything, they're even more haunting. 2000, Stoddart Kids, Ages 10 up, $18.95. Reviewer: Donna Freedman
School Library Journal
Gr 6 Up-This book is a rare gift. Oberman interviewed Tookoome, "-one of the last of the Inuit to live the traditional nomadic life in the Far North," over a 10-year period and translated his stories from his native Inuktitut. In pictures and words, this volume describes a way of life that very few readers could imagine. The subsistence existence that the subject led until the late 1960s is told simply, yet powerfully, accompanied by his na ve-style illustrations, which Oberman describes as having "-the primal beauty of a cave painting, [and] the imagination of a modern Miro or Chagall." The picture-book format will be misleading to some; the language is not difficult, but make no mistake: the culture leap that this book allows will require some sophistication on the part of readers. In the introduction, Oberman provides background and a description of his own culture shock at his initial arrival in remote Baker Lake. This title has an authentic view of traditional northern life that few other books could match.-Sue Sherif, Fairbanks North Star Borough Public Library, AK Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.|
Internet Bookwatch
In The Shaman's Nephew: A Life In The Far North, Inuit shaman Simon Tookoome and author/storyteller Sheldon Oberman collaborate to provide a unique translation of both Inuktitut and oral traditions. Illustrated in full color throughout by self-taught Tookoome, The Shaman's Nephew offers distinct and animated art showcasing twenty-eight passages describing various and diverse aspects of Inuit life including the naming of children, child-rearing, hunting, drumming in Inuit culture, the mysteries of Shamanism, and Tookoome's own inspiration for his art. The Shaman's Nephew is highly recommended reading for students of Native American studies in general, and the Inuit culture in particular.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780773761896
  • Publisher: Stoddart Kids
  • Publication date: 12/1/2000
  • Pages: 55
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.06 (w) x 9.06 (h) x 0.19 (d)

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