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Peacemaker

By: Joseph Bruchac

Twelve-year-old Okwaho’s life has suddenly changed. While out hunting with his best friend, his friend is kidnapped by marauders from a neighboring tribe. Okwaho barely escapes back to his village where everyone lives in fear of raids and killings: The five tribes of the Iroquois have been at war with each other for far too long, and no one can even remember what it was like to live in peace.

Okwaho seeks only revenge, which will just perpetuate the violence. But before he can retaliate, a visitor with a message of peace, as told in the lore of the of the Iroquois nation, comes to him in the woods. The Peacemaker—a vision in white buckskin with a calm demeanor and soothing words—tells the boy that he can convince even the most warlike leaders of the wisdom of peace. Okwaho joins the legions of others who believe, and is present when the great treaty creating the Iroquois Confederacy is enacted.

Author’s note.

ISBN: 9781984815378

JLG Release: Jan 2021


Sensitive Areas: Violence: Mild Violence
Topics: Iroquois Indians , North American Indians in New York State , Peace , Revenge , The Iroquois Confederacy , Legends , Coming of age , Conduct of life , Friendship

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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

School Library Journal

Gr 5 Up–A fictional retelling of the Haudenosaunee (also known as the Iroquois Confederacy). Readers meet Okwaho, a young Onontaka boy who lives in the small village of Kanata. The book, written from Okwaho’s perspective, is set during an undefined, pre-contact time of war between tribal nations. The arrival of the Peacemaker is a familiar oral Gr 5 Up–A fictional retelling of the Haudenosaunee (also known as the Iroquois Confederacy). Readers meet Okwaho, a young Onontaka boy who lives in the small village of Kanata. The book, written from Okwaho’s perspective, is set during an undefined, pre-contact time of war between tribal nations. The arrival of the Peacemaker is a familiar oral tradition, and the book paints a picture of how the Haudenosaunee was formed by the Peacemaker to create unity. While Bruchac emphasizes the importance of the Indigenous origin of names for locations, tribes, and characters, he unfortunately fails to explain their meanings and significance, which may confuse and hinder some readers. Despite Bruchac’s celebrated storytelling abilities on display here, the narrative sometimes meanders. References to how the Peacemaker story is still acknowledged and respected today by modern Haudenosaunee would have imparted a stronger sense of relevance for today’s audience. The author’s note and acknowledgements credit Haudenosaunee friends who shared their stories with him to help recreate this retelling. VERDICT Purchase where Bruchac’s work is popular.–Danielle Burbank, San Juan Coll., Farmington, NM

Book Details

ISBN

9781984815378

First Release

January 2021

Genre

Fiction

Dewey Classification

F

Trim Size

8 3/10" x 5 1/2"

Page Count

160

Accelerated Reader

Level 5.4; Points: 5;

Scholastic Reading Counts

N/A

Lexile

N/A

Format

Print Book

Edition

Hardcover edition

Publisher

Dial

Potentially Sensitive Areas

Violence: Mild Violence

Topics

Iroquois Indians, North American Indians in New York State, Peace, Revenge, The Iroquois Confederacy, Legends, Coming of age, Conduct of life, Friendship,

Standard MARC Record

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Cover Art

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Book Genres

Historical Fiction

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