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Iktomi and the Ducks: A Plains Indian Story

After outwitting some ducks, Iktomi, the Indian trickster, is outwitted by Coyote.

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  1. Giordano Bruno says

    Joys of Parenting… … and sorrows, too, as your child gets too ‘mature’ to sit on your lap and let you read the Iktomi stories to him or her. My son and I have just been sorting through his childhood books (he’s a junior in high school), planning to give most of them away. When we came to the dozen or so Paul Goble books, particularly the Iktomi stories, we both exclaimed that “No! these couldn’t go to Goodwill.” For one thing, they are all beautifully produced – durable, well-printed, etc. – good enough to save for another generation. But mainly the memories we share of laughing at the folly of the boastful trickster Iktomi are too precious to let go.Goble’s many books for children retell legends and histories of the Native Americans of the Great Plains with wry wit and respect, and without a trace of ethnographic condescension. His art as a story-teller, however, is secondary to his art as an illustrator. There is a subtle quality of “Indian design” to his pictorial style, but he surpasses any other children’s book illustrator I’ve ever seen in craftsmanship. Every page would catch your eye even on the museum wall next to the most acclaimed modern artists. I mean it! Paul Goble is a thrilling painter! A picture is worth a thousand words? Perhaps, but a thousand words aren’t always worth a picture, so you’ll have to see for yourselves. Even if you don’t have a child yet or any more, treat yourself to an Iktomi book and read it to your cat or your begonia. You’ll be enthralled.

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