Two Bad Boys: A Very Old Cherokee Tale

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Boy lives with Corn Mother and First Hunter and is very lonely. One day while playing, he finds a child who calls himself Wild Boy and claims to be Boy's brother. Boy's parents take in the young stranger, treating him as one of their own. But Wild Boy proves to be untamable, and he talks his gentle brother into playing tricks that soon lead to disaster. Full color.

Boy finds his wild brother under the surface of the river and pulls him out onto land, where Wild Boy ...

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Overview

Boy lives with Corn Mother and First Hunter and is very lonely. One day while playing, he finds a child who calls himself Wild Boy and claims to be Boy's brother. Boy's parents take in the young stranger, treating him as one of their own. But Wild Boy proves to be untamable, and he talks his gentle brother into playing tricks that soon lead to disaster. Full color.

Boy finds his wild brother under the surface of the river and pulls him out onto land, where Wild Boy begins to lead him astray into trouble.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
"Since that time, people have had to hunt for their meat, plant their vegetables, and work in this world." Although this may sound startlingly like the banishment of a certain First Couple, "two bad boys" are to blame for this human condition, according to Haley's well-told version of a Cherokee tale. In the beginning of time, a boy's reflection in a pond springs to life. This new brother, Wild Boy, tempts the formerly obedient Boy into mischief. They discover the cave of animals from which their father sparingly hunts; they accidentally release all the animals. They find the hut from which their mother gathers abundant vegetables; they try to take some and the hut vanishes. Thereafter they and their progeny must hunt and farm vegetables to survive. Caldecott Medalist Haley's (A Story, A Story) retelling is crystal-clear, conscientiously researched and handsomely illustrated in earth-toned acrylics. Her careful compositions, essentially realistic but lightly infused with mysticism, subtly evoke a paradise lost. Ages 5-8. (Aug.)
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6In the Cherokee version of Eden, First Hunter, Corn Mother, and their son enjoy foodwithout working for it. Boy is lonely, and one day sees another child beneath the surface of the river looking up at him. Each morning, Wild Boy comes out of the river to play; eventually Boy's parents capture him and take him home. They cannot tame him, however. The youngsters' mischief escalates until they discover the sources of their family's meat and corn and cause them to vanish. The boys feel hunger, their parents depart, and their willful independence compels themand all their descendantsto work for their food. Like Genesis, this tale acknowledges the punishing aspect of labor, the human tendency to curiosity and meddling, and the adolescent desire for self-sufficiency. Here, however, the ungovernable impulse to follow one's own will is recognized as a wild, undomesticated side of the self: Freud's id anticipated. Haley's illustrations, each bordered by a narrow geometric band, depict the figures with strongly modeled forms. Despite the stylized treatment of certain animals and plants, the overall effect is realistic. The Cherokee have appropriately ethnic features, and the few objects (baskets, tools, ornaments) around them convey a sense of their culture. Against a golden background, touches of teal and green stand out. The presentation is culturally specific, but the story's themes have a universal and timeless resonance.Patricia (Dooley) Lothrop Green, St. George's School, Newport, RI
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780525453116
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/28/1996
  • Edition description: 1st ed
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: 700L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.86 (w) x 11.34 (h) x 0.42 (d)

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