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When his father returns East to collect the rest of the family, 13-year-old Matt is left alone to guard his family's newly built homestead. One day, Matt is brutally stung when he robs a bee tree for honey. He returns to consciousness to discover that his many stings have been treated by an old Native American and his grandson. Matt offers his only book as thanks, but the old man instead asks Matt to teach his grandson Attean to read. Both boys are suspicious, but Attean comes each day for his lesson. In the mornings, Matt tries to entice Attean with tales from Robinson Crusoe, while in the afternoons, Attean teaches Matt about wilderness survival and Native American culture. The boys become friends in spite of themselves, and their inevitable parting is a moving tribute to the ability of shared experience to overcome prejudice. The Sign of the Beaver was a Newbery Honor Book; author Elizabeth Speare has also won the Newbery Medal twice, for The Witch of Blackbird Pond and The Bronze Bow. (Ages 12 and older) --Richard Farr --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Grade 5-8-Elizabeth George Speare's acclaimed, captivating historical novel (BDD) set in the 1700s receives a fresh treatment here, thanks to narrator Greg Schaffert's fine, crystal clear narration that brings the story to life. Speare's evocative tale tells of the mutually beneficial friendship that develops between Matt, a 13-year-old white boy living alone in the wilderness, and Attean, a proud Native American on the verge of manhood. Matt is guarding his family's newly built cabin while his father travels to retrieve Matt's mother and sister. Attean saves Matt's life after a terrifying bee attack (beautifully brought to life by both Speare and Schaffert). The two become reluctant pals: Matt teaches Attean how to read, and Attean shows Matt how to hunt, set traps and gather. Soon Matt must make a choice: join Attean's tribe or wait for his family to return. Speare's Newbery Honor winner is a good adventure story that will hook those interested in survival stories. It will also serve multicultural collections.
Brian E. Wilson, Oak Lawn Public Library, IL
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
As a teenager I loved this book very much. As an adult I find areas of it quite problematic, HOWEVER, the reason I gave it four stars is that this copy includes those areas in a... Read morePublished 5 months ago by D. Johansen
A wonderful read-aloud book to children ages 6 to 12 or so. I read it to three grandsons, and they were entranced by it. I think it would be nice for girls too.Published 13 months ago by Gordon Stretch
A light and enlightening tale of the courage of youth and the possibilities toward camaraderie between races. An enjoyable read.Published 17 months ago by Dan Vickerd
We first checked out this audio-tape out from the library when my son was 7. He loved it on that first long car trip, and we have checked it out 3 more times since then. Read morePublished on June 9 2004 by Nia
I hated this book so much! It was horrible. Nothing ever happend, it was one big bore! Don't read this book unless you are forced to. Read morePublished on June 4 2004
This is a good book. In the begining it is boring but keep on reading because it becomes fasinating. Matt's family leaves and
Matt has to watch over the cabbin. Read more
I hated this book. This kid has to stay at this cabin till his father comes back with his family. Then he meets this ben guy who takes his rifle so he can only eat fish. Read morePublished on April 30 2004
In doing research on the book, I came across several Native American organizations that find the content offensive. Read morePublished on April 8 2004