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The Indian School

Review

The Indian School

written by Gloria Whelan, illustrated by Gabriela Dellosso

THE INDIAN SCHOOL, Gloria Whelan's touching young reader chapter book, explores the sometimes dark history of Native Americans in the US through the eyes of Lucy, a ten-year-old girl.

When her parents are killed in a wagon accident, Lucy is taken in by her Aunt Emma and Uncle Edward --- proprietors of The Indian School. "Bring only sensible clothes," her aunt tersely instructs by letter. "Since you are an only child," she continues, "it is likely that you received much coddling. You must not look to us for that kind of attention."

The orphaned girl travels to live with her aunt and uncle --- she simply has no choice. But shortly after her relocation, Star Face and his older sister Raven also arrive. Watching the quietly defiant Raven helps Lucy understand a new kind of loneliness and the bravery it takes to survive it.

Gloria Whelan proves in this book that she is a gifted storyteller and a mindful steward for young readers. The book is a quick-paced, well-charted reading experience. Whelan brilliantly presents scenes of native Indian life. She gives her story unforgettable heart, her characters true courage, without a wasted word.

THE INDIAN SCHOOL is ideal for young readers who want a story with real depth and genuine focus, but can't yet navigate hundreds of pages of an adult history book.

Reviewed by Kelly Milner Halls on August 16, 1997

The Indian School
written by Gloria Whelan, illustrated by Gabriela Dellosso

  • Publication Date: August 16, 1997
  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins
  • ISBN-10: 0064420566
  • ISBN-13: 9780064420563