Arrow to the Sun: A Pueblo Indian Tale

Arrow to the Sun: A Pueblo Indian Tale

by Gerald McDermott
4.6 9


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Arrow to the Sun 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The story here is a Native American Pueblo tale. It begins when 'Long ago the Lord of the Sun sent the spark of life to earth.' 'It traveled down the rays of the sun, through the heavens, and it came to the Pueblo.' 'There it entered the home of a young maiden.' 'In this way, the Boy came into the world of men.' Growing up alone with his mother, the boy is derided by the other boys. 'Where is your father?' Finally, the boy could take it no more. He left to find his father. The Corn Planter and the Pot Maker could not help him. But the wise Arrow Maker could. The Arrow Maker made the boy into an arrow and shot him into the sun. The boy claimed to be the son of the Lord of the Sun, but the Lord of the Sun demanded proof. Tests were involved, but the boy was not afraid. He successfully went through the four kivas of lions, serpents, bees and lightning. After the kiva of lightning, he was transformed and was filled with the 'power of the sun.' The father and his son rejoiced. The Lord of the Sun said, 'Now you must return to earth, my son, and bring my spirit to the world of men.' He was sent back as an arrow. 'The people celebrated his return in the Dance of Life.' As you can see, this story is a very conceptual one that deals with spiritual matters involving cultural traditions that are probably unfamiliar to your child. The book will be easier to understand if you explain a little about the religious beliefs of the Pueblo Native Americans before reading this book to your child. You will also need to explain the point about how not having a father present can create a stir. The arrow transfers can be explained as magic, and the search itself can be likened to a quest of the sort that knights often undertook. The spiritual connection can be explained in terms of your own religious beliefs or tradition. The story is also a metaphor for the planting cycle, as well as the cycle of life and death. The key reason to read this book is to see some of the most remarkable modern renderings ever created of classic southwestern Native American pictograms. These pictograms are built from stylized geometric components combined into other geometric forms in a palette built mostly from yellow, orange, red, brown, and black. As accents, turquoise and green are added. These images are created with gouache (a thick form of water color) and preseparated black lines. These geometric shapes take literal beings and turn them into spiritual, conceptual ones. If you are like me, the transformation of the boy into the power of the rainbow against a sky of black will take your breath away. Not surprisingly, this book won Mr. McDermott the coveted Caldecott Medal in 1975 as the best illustrated children's book. After you finish enjoying the story of the book, I suggest that you also help your child understand some of the legends of other peoples in other times about planting and harvesting, as well as the manhood tests. If you are not familiar with any, The Golden Bough can be a good source for you. I remember being impressed as a child by how similar the beliefs are across cultures about common experiences like those related to agriculture. That impression helped me be more open about what appeared to be differences when I met people from other cultures. I was inclined to assume that we had more in common than our different clothes, manners, and languages would have suggested. Connect to the funamental way the sun serves as the ultimate source of food and power for us all! Donald Mitchell, co-author of The Irresistible Growth Enterprise and The 2,000 Percent Solution
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
MeganIllinois More than 1 year ago
My students have enjoyed this book immensely. The graphics as well as the message are outstanding.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Gerald McDermott did a good job on the book, 'Raven.' The Detroit, Michigan native 'Born in 1941' showed his artistic side in this book. I love the colors he uses ad the pictures are really pretty. From his artwork in the book there is no doubt that he graduated from Pratt Institute and Design. This author, illustrator, and filmmaker has some nice awards under his belt, such as the 1994 Caldecott Honor Medal for 'Raven.' This wasn't his first receiving a Caldecott honor because in 1975 his 'Arrow to the Sun' won the Caldecot Medal award. In this book McDermott does a great job of telling the Pueblo Indian Tale. The story was amazing but so were the pictures. I took a lot longer on this book because I was amazed with artwork that went with it. I think that this book will actually draw the kids in because its a different kind of story with different pictures to capture their attention.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a Pueblo Indian story!! It has vibrant colors and Geometric Forms! It deals with Pueblo Indian Art! It is about a boy who goes in search for his father! ' In this way the boy came into the world' ' Mother he said one day I must look for my father'! Read to see if he finds him! This book would be good for boys and 2nd grades!McDermott, Gerald. Arrow to the Sun. New York, NY: , .
Guest More than 1 year ago
In 1975 'Arrow to the Sun' was given the Caldecott Medal Award and after reading the book I realized why. Gerald McDermott does a great job telling and illustrating this Pueblo Indian tale. I would read the words on the page then look at the drawings and best amazed with them and look at them for a long period of time. I love how the Indian Tale is told and the pictures are done in their artwork as well. I think kids would find this book interesting and while they think they are reading it for enjoyment they are actually learning about the Pueblo Indians.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A young maiden had a son from ¿the spark of life¿ that was sent by the Lord of the Sun. He grew up in a pueblo but some boys wouldn¿t let him play with them and would ask, ¿where is your father?¿ They were mean to him which made him and his mother sad. So he set out to find his father. While he was traveling he came to a Corn Planter, then a Pot Maker but neither of them helped him fin d his father. He came to an Arrow Maker who was very ¿wise¿ and ¿he saw that the Boy had come from the sun.¿ So, the Arrow Maker made the boy an arrow and launched him to the sun. To prove he was his son, the Lord of the Sun gave him ¿four Chambers of Ceremony ¿ the Kiva of Lions, the Kiva of serpents, the Kiva of Bees, and the Kiva of lightning¿ to pass through and prove himself. Will the boy prove himself to be the son of the Lord of the Sun? Gerald McDermott is the author of this Pueblo Indian Tale. He started drawing at four years old. At this time he was admitted to the Detroit Institute of Arts, one of the nation¿s finest museums. Two of his picture books, Raven: A Trickster Tale from the Pacific Northwest and Arrow to the Sun, have won the Caldecott Honor Medal. His first book, Anansi the Spider: A Tale from the Ashanti also won a Caldecott Honor Medal.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This story is a beautifully illustrated old Indian tale. It begins like the nativity story, where the Virgin Mary gives birth to the Son of God, however, in this story it begins when the Lord of the Sun sent the spark of life to Earth and it entered into the house of a young maiden. Throughout this story the boy grows up and then wants to find his father. He travels near and far trying to find someone who could show him how to get to his father. Finally, the boy meets up with an arrow maker who recognized that he had come from the Sun. How would you think an arrow maker would help the boy get to the sun, by fashioning him into an arrow and shooting him there of course! Once the boy arrives on the Sun, the Lord of the Sun said to prove he was who he said he was he would need to go through a series of tests. Would he pass the test, and make his father believe him, and how will he get back to Earth? Read this wonderful Pueblo Indian tale to find out. The author of this book Gerald McDermott began drawing at the early age of four, when he was admitted into a very prestigious art school. He continued through high school studying at a high school whose curriculum centered on art. Later in life he began creating films about folklore. Then he said at a pivotal point of his life he met a man named Joseph Campbell who helped on some of his films, but more importantly showed him the importance of integrating culture into his artwork. This revelation is what sparked his interest into illustrating and transferring his films into children¿s books. Two of which have won the prestigious Caldecott honor Medal.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Arrow to the Sun is a Pueblo Indian tale written and illustration by Gerald McDermott. A Caldecott Award Book for its beautiful and vibrant illustrations, which help tell the Native American story. In this tale a boy, who is in search of his father, is turned into an arrow by the arrow maker and shot to the sun. The boy must prove himself by passing through four chambers of ceremony. The boy passes courageously and when he comes through the last chamber he is transformed and filled with the power of the sun. Once again the boy is turned into an arrow and returns to the Pueblo people. They celebrate his return with the Dance of Life.