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Moonstick: The Seasons Of The Sioux (Turtleback School & Library Binding Edition) (Trophy Picture Books (Pb))

Press: Turtleback Books (February 16, 2000)
Publication Date:2000-2


A young Dakota Indian boy describes the changes that come both in nature and in the life of his people with each new moon of the Sioux year.

From Kirkus Reviews

Bunting (The Pumpkin Fair, p. 
947, etc.) turns a sensitive eye to Sioux culture, depicting it truthfully and realistically while incorporating into the book a heartening message to any child whose ancestral ways have passed (even temporarily) into obscurity.
The father of the first-person narrator notches a moon-counting stick at the beginning of each of the 13 moons of the Sioux year, a way to mark the passing of the year.
Sandford's appealing, unsentimental illustrations link the notches to the passing seasons, from the Moon of the Birth of Calves, through the Cherry-Ripening Moon when the men take part in the Sun Dance, and the Sore-Eyes Moon when snow so dazzles the narrator that his father reassures him that ``changes come and will come again.
It is so arranged.'' Soon it is time for a new moonstick, but, in a brief page, readers understand that many moonsticks have come and gone: The child is grown, his culture passed away, and the narrator's livelihood comes from the sale of his wife's beadwork and his own headdresses--``We do not hunt.'' That's the poignant clincher, so it's a relief that the narrator takes his small grandson to cut a stick, to pass on his father's wisdom, to note that changes will come again.
Expertly and beautifully told.
(Picture book.
5-9) -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP.
All rights reserved.

--This text refers to the Turtleback edition.


"A lovely, elegiac book, a romantic paean to a vanished existence". 
-- School Library Journal

--This text refers to the Turtleback edition.

From the Back Cover

The thirteen moons of the Sioux yearWhen the snows of winter disappear, a young boy helps his father cut a moon-counting stick, which they keep inside their tipi. 
With the rising of each new moon, a notch is made in the stick, and the boy watches the changing seasons.
He sees his father dancing the Sun Dance during the Cherry-Ripening Moon; he witnesses the golden-red trees during the Moon of the Falling Leaves.
And he learns that changes come and will come again.Acclaimed writer Eve Bunting's lyrical, haunting text, combined with John Sandford's rich and carefully researched paintings, create a remarkable picture book about one Native American boy's journey toward adulthood.

--This text refers to the Turtleback edition.

About the Author

Eve Bunting is the winner of the Golden Kite Award and the three-time recipient of the Best Work of Fiction Award of the Southern CaliforniaCouncil on Literature for Children and Young People. 
She has written more than one hundred books for young readers, including is Anybody There ?; Our Sixth-Grade Sugar Babies, a Best Book of 1990 (School Library Journal); Sharing Susan; and Coffin on a Case, winner of the Edgar Award for Best Juvenile Mystery, given by the Mystery Writers of America.
Bunting was born in Ireland and now lives in southern California.

--This text refers to the Turtleback edition.


Children's Books,Fairy Tales, Folk Tales & Myths,Other,Geography & Cultures,Multicultural Stories,Native North & South Americans,Growing Up & Facts of Life,Family Life

 PDF Download And Online Read: Moonstick: The Seasons Of The Sioux (Turtleback School & Library Binding Edition) (Trophy Picture Books (Pb))

Comment List (Total:8)

  •     This book is beautiful, the illustrations are soft and dark and gorgeous. The seasons come alive through the poetic language and the lovely pictures used to describe each of the thirteen moons. The story ends with the boy grown an old man passing on the moonstick tradition to his grandson. One of the thirteen moons is the "moon of the hairless calves" and the book describes the sadness the boy feels when pregnant buffalo are killed and their hairless buffalo fetuses are found during the butchering. While the picture for this moon fortunately does not show this and then text acknowledges the sadness you should judge whether or not this is something your child is ready to think about. I love the overall message of change coming and then coming again, it is very well written.

  •     Beautiful illustrations supplement and enhance the text about a little boy growing up. This is my new favorite counting book, and my second graders, who study the Lakota-Sioux Indians, are very drawn to this book again and again.

  •     The illustrations are not that interesting for children. They are muted colors and that is okay to portray reality however, they could have been more colorful or photographs would have been better. I like how Eve Bunting wrote the text. It is easy to read and interesting for students. It is almost written like a poem. It is an Accelerated Reader book at 2.9 reading level. I would read this to 2nd and 3rd graders during National Native American month in November.

  •     Great for kids.

  •     Beautiful book, great seller!

  •     The book begins with a young Dakota Indian boy being told of the changes that occur in nature and in life by his father and ends with him continuing the "moon-stick" tradition he was taught despite it being a different time. Changes in nature and in the lives of the Sioux come with each new moon of the Sioux year. A "moon-counting stick" is used to keep track of each moon and is replaced every Spring, which is when the Sioux year begins. The illustrations in this book capture the changes of the seasons through color, from the brighter, fresher colors of spring to the warmer, deeper colors of autumn. Each season and corresponding Sioux activity is described poetically in an attempt to convey the spirit and feeling of the season and the people as they read nature's signs. I loved the use of color and poetry to capture the mood of each season and the mood of the Sioux, summertime sewing circles with strawberries to color leather leggings and the white of snow as "blinding" with the "biting" cold. I hesitate to give it 5 stars only because the phrase "the Great Spirit" is used, insinuating the Sioux believed in one great governing spirit when in fact, many spirits were acknowledged, each playing a role and in conjunction with each other. I did enjoy the universal lessons mentioned in the text, such as the need to recognize the presence of cycles in nature and life and to accept change as a part of life. An excellent book for introducing children to the seasons in general and specifically the Sioux view of the seasons. Also good for introducing the concepts of change and cycles.

  •     Beautiful book both in words and illustrations. Wonderful book for any child that enjoys learning about Native American culture, nature, and has a curiosity for mystical stories rooted in history! My son is 6yrs old and enjoys this book a lot.

  •     My son loves book. Johnny is 10 yrs old. Thank you


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