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Rainbow Crow - Nancy Van Laan

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Genre: Junior Books / Author: Nancy Van Laan / Edition: Reprint / Paperback / Reading Level: Ages 4-8 / 40 Pages / Book is published 1991-07 by Random House USA Inc

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      15.06.2010 14:34
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      A really magical story.

      Ages 4-8
      Educational : Multicultural Folktales
      Illustrations: Beautiful
      Storyline: Excellent.

      Once crow was the most beautiful of all birds with feathers like a rainbow and an enchanting song like voice. This book is beautiful retelling of the Lenape (Native American) legend of the great sacrifice crow made to bring fire to earth.

      When the story begins the earth is warm and beautiful and all the animals live happily. This is well illustrated with beautiful colourful illustrations. But then the cold comes, and the snow, and the animals grow desperate. This book tells of crows journey to ask the Great Spirit for help and his return with a gift to save his friends - the gift of fire.

      I prefer not to give endings, but of course it's obvious that crow looses his beautiful voice and feathers. As he flies back to earth the flames scorch him and blacken his feathers, and the smoke chokes him and leaves his voice harsh and hoarse but he perseveres and saves his friends, though not withut great cost to himself.

      This is but one of many legends of Crow as fire bearer among Native American tribes, and of course legends of the gift of fire exist worldwide.
      This is however a really lovely story and the illustrations absolutely bring it to life. I would reccomend this book highly for educators using stories from around the world, but even more so for just parents looking for a wonderful bedtime story.

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