|We are water protectors|
Author: Lindstrom, Carole
A picture book about standing up to protect one of nature's most sacred resources from harm.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 1.90
Points: .5 Quiz: 509720
Caldecott Medal, 2021
Kirkus Reviews (01/01/20)
School Library Journal (04/01/20)
Booklist (+) (02/01/20)
The Hornbook (00/07/20)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 02/01/2020 *Starred Review* An Indigenous girl explains why water is sacred, before she speaks of the foretold “black snake that will destroy the land,” referring to the polluting oil pipelines that course through the earth. The girl then casts fear aside, crying, “Take courage!” as she marches forward, rallying her people to defend their village and their planet. Goade’s watercolor illustrations fill the spreads with streaming ribbons of water, cosmic backdrops, and lush natural landscapes, sometimes intercut by the harsh red that comes with the black snake—depicted literally, towering over people of many nations, who link hands in solidarity. Lindstrom’s spare, poetic text flows with the “river’s rhythm,” periodically stopping to beat out the refrain, “We stand / With our songs / And our drums. / We are still here.” Written in response to the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline, famously protested by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and others, these pages carry grief, but it is overshadowed by hope in what is an unapologetic call to action. While the text draws on specific cultural beliefs, its argument is universal: “We are stewards of the Earth.” Back matter includes notes from both author and illustrator, and the final page offers a pledge that readers may choose to recite, sign, and date to affirm their commitment to the cause. A beautiful tribute and powerful manifesto. - Copyright 2020 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 04/01/2020 K-Gr 3—From swirling, detailed watercolor illustrations to lyrical text with the refrain, "We stand with our songs and our drums. We are still here," this title explores the Indigenous fight to protect water from pollution. A young Anishinaabe girl explains the prophecy of the black snake "that will destroy the land. Spoil the water. Poison plants and animals. Wreck everything in its path." The unnamed girl calls for action to protect all living things and "fight for those who cannot fight for themselves." The illustrations use rich colors and shading to show the intricate connection among all living creatures. A broken pipeline leaks into blue waters, turning fish and fowl into skeletons. Ghosts of ancestors surround children as an elder tells them the black snake prophecy. Black pipelines form the body of the snake on a red background, its mouth open and ready to strike. The author and illustrator notes focus on the need to protect water, and explain events at Standing Rock, where tribal members and their allies fought against an oil pipeline. A glossary of terms is provided, and the last page has an "Earth Steward and Water Protector Pledge" for readers to sign. VERDICT An accessible introduction to environmental issues combined with beautiful illustrations, this book will both educate and inspire youth. First purchase for all libraries.—Tamara Saarinen, Pierce County Library, WA - Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.