Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Book Review- Indian Shoes

Published by Harper Collins
Released on April 1st, 2002
Source- Book from author/publisher to review
Ages- Elementary school age readers & up
5 stars- I really enjoyed it

What do Indian shoes look like, anyway? Like beautiful beaded moccasins...or hightops with bright orange shoelaces?

Ray Halfmoon prefers hightops, but he gladly trades them for a nice pair of moccasins for his Grampa. After all, it's Grampa Halfmoon who's always there to help Ray get in and out of scrapes — like the time they are forced to get creative after a homemade haircut makes Ray's head look like a lawn-mowing accident.

This collection of interrelated stories is heartwarming and laugh-out-loud funny. Cynthia Leitich Smith writes with wit and candor about what it's like to grow up as a Seminole-Cherokee boy who is just as happy pounding the pavement in windy Chicago as rowing on a take in rural Oklahoma (quoted from Goodreads).

Can I just say how much I love the cover and the illustrations through out the book. I felt the pictures capture the characters perfectly. I thoroughly enjoyed this fabulous collection of interrelated stories. Cynthia has a talent for brining her stories to life and Indian Shoes is no different. I loved the way in which I got to know her characters young Ray who is half Cherokee- Seminole and his Grandfather, Grampa Halfmoon. Through each of her stories Cynthia allowed me to not only get a glimpse of their relationship, but I felt I was apart of their daily life. I loved getting to know more about her characters.

Indian Shoes is uniquely written as the book is made up for a series of short stories about Ray and Grampa Halfmoon's adventures and little mishaps. Grampa Halfmoon and Ray have a very close bond that I really enjoyed seeing come to life. Through the series of short stories readers come to know Ray lost both of his parents when he was a baby (the story mentions what happened), and he's been with Grampa Halfmoon since then. Grampa Halfmoon and Ray enjoy their visits to OKlahoma to visit family, fishing and baseball and it's on their way to a Cubs game that the stumble upon a pair of Indian Moccasins, which makes Grampa pretty homesick.

This is such a delightfully charming story. Through the little mishaps both Ray and Grampa Halfmoon have, I loved seeing how their love and support for each other kept getting stronger and stronger. I also really enjoyed the fact that Cynthia had her characters living in Chicago, I think this will help young readers realize that Native Americans live all over, and not just on reservations. My favorite aspect of the story are the little things Grampa Halfmoon teaches his grandson Ray. Indian Shoes is a fabulous book to have and I highly recommend picking it up. It's a great edition for any classroom and personal home library.

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I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. ~ Anna Quindlen

Good children's literature appeals not only to
the child in the adult, but to the adult in the child.
~ Anonymous ~