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Healer of the Water Monster Hardcover – May 11, 2021
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"The deeply grounded and original perspective of this story brings readers into both the worlds of Navajo blessing songs, rain songs, and traditional healing and everyday family relationships. Hands readers a meaningful new take on family love." -- Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"Young’s narrative weaves traditional folklore, language, and mythos with modern emotion to craft a poignant tale of family, friendship, and protecting what you love most." -- Booklist
About the Author
- Publisher : Heartdrum (May 11, 2021)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 368 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0062990403
- ISBN-13 : 978-0062990402
- Reading age : 8 - 12 years
- Grade level : 3 - 7
- Item Weight : 15.2 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.6 x 1.6 x 8.4 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #71,369 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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The story captures important traditional knowledge and weaves it into contemporary events and crises, including dealing with waste from decades of uranium mining on the Reservation, the effect of genetically-modified corn on the sacred corn pollen, and the effect of the current long-term drought in the American Southwest. These and other problems facing the Diné today are well thought-out and well presented.
This book is a repository of knowledge as well as a stimulant to understanding and inquiry among youth of all nations – and all ages.
Except things are not okay with Uncle Jet, and he and Nali fight. And something keeps stealing Nathan's heirloom corn seeds, hindering his project. Late one night, Nathan happens to come across the creature that is stealing his seed, a mysterious horned toad. When Nathan follows the toad, he ends up finding a Water Monster, a Holy Being, that is in need of healing. The Water Monster's pond has dried up, and he can't summon more water; worse, he is almost out of medicine that was gifted to him by Mother Water Monster, who resides in the Third World. Nathan agrees to help his new friend get well, though he finds that it is harder than he expects, facing challenges of the heart, mind, body, and spirit.
A fantastic, beautiful, and heart-felt debut from Brian Young, "Healer of the Water Monster" is a story of culture, faith, and different types of strength, including the greatest strength of all: love. Young expertly writes about sensitive topics for a young audience, particularly PTSD, alcoholism, depression, and racism past and present, but also beautifully shares Navajo culture and beliefs. Young's love for his culture is practically palpable in these pages, and he equally shares it freely and protects it fiercely.
I adored Nathan, and his journey throughout the book. He doesn't try to be a hero, he just tries to do the right thing. He learns that sometimes the right thing is the hard thing, and that it takes a lot of courage to do the hard thing; sometimes, he lacks that courage, but in the end knowing that it's the right thing is what sees him through, even when he's scared, even when he feels like he can't go on, even when things look bleak. There were so many times I just wanted to give Nathan a hug, and cheer him on. He's such a sweetheart, and I know that he'll go on to do even greater things. But, more importantly, Nathan felt so real. He reminded me a lot of my brother at that age. That realness just added a further level of greatness to this book, which further elevates Young as a voice to watch as his debut enters the world, with readers eagerly anticipating what will follow.