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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on February 10, 2002
The Qallupilluq is an imaginary Inuit creature that lives on Hudson Bay, according to the book's afterward. This troll-like thing wears a parka made of loon feathers and is said to grab children when they walk near the cracks in the ice.
This creature was invented much like others' hobgoblins, to frighten children into listening to their parents.
This version of an encounter with the Qallupilluit comes from Michael Kusugak, an Inuit man who was raised in the Arctic. He sent it to Robert Munsch, who had stayed with Kusugak's family while visiting Rankin Inlet in Canada's Northwest Territories.
The result is a dance with some of the greater truths that transcend all cultures. Alyssa A. Lappen
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 7, 1999
Colorful pictures of a cultural heritage tell a scary story that teaches the reader that "a promise is a promise." Allashua lives in the North West Territories where she goes ice fishing on lakes and at the ocean. Her parents warn her of the Qallupilluit, imaginary troll-like creatures that seize children who are out on the ocean ice without their parents. Allashua is caught and promises to return with her brothers and sisters. She must keep her promise but her parents must also protect them from the Qallupilluit. The story might scare some young children, but the ending is a happy one. The sentence "a promise is a promise," is repeated throughout the book. With the threat of the Qallupilluit, children learn not to disobey their parents, always to keep a promise, and where applicable, to not go onto the ice alone. It is a good story that gives insight into one small part of Inuit culture. A good book for multicultural themes.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on June 9, 2015
Near another country to our south and stretching north to Nunavut; I have always appreciated other cultures but could only glimpse the Inuit at a distance. Any painting or soapstone I ever saw entailed hunting; something that goes against the soul of someone who considers animals my equals. I am excited to discover <b>Michael Kusugak & Vladyana Krykorka</b>, who have created books where that topic dips no further than fishing. At last I was free to explore a personal introduction! I poured over “<b>A Promise Is A Promise</b>”, 1988 and <i>“Hide And Sneak”</i>, 1992 enthusiastically! I hung on every word and image, illustrated in the most magical style I have ever seen, that is all at once serene.

How <b>Vladyana</b> depicted numerous mythical creatures in motion, inside a small room, is befuddling. Never have I seen ice and sky hold so much colour. Snow scenes are familiar to me but these special vistas are very much this family’s milieu. Eldest daughter of five, <i>Allashua</i> is warned to visit a lake instead of the sea, because <i>Qallupilluit</i> lurk in its crevasses. How wonderful that they live at walking distance from both. I enjoyed the modern house, loving parents, and gorgeous Mother who couldn’t be more than forty-five years old. The <i>Qallupilluit</i> do strike and Mother addresses them from that nearby sea. My favourite illustration is of her so elegantly dancing, in modern dress, among feared creatures.

What most impressed upon me is the parents’ calmness. <i>Allashua</i> told them precisely what transpired. Unlike most tales, no secret was kept to avoid being scolded. Her parents were allies. They never shouted about a mistake or predicament. They lovingly brainstormed how they could solve it. They dried her after she fell through ice and coordinated an intelligent plan, to ward off dangerous mythical entities.
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on September 24, 1997
In this vividly illustrated children's book, an Inuit girl disobeys her parents and goes out on the dangerous sea ice. She is stolen by the dangerous Kallipilluit people who live under the ice. As they drag her under they tell her she will never see her parents or brothers or sisters again. To escape, she makes a rash promise to deliver her brothers and sisters to them. When she tells her parents about her promise after they warm her up from near-death, they figure out a way to honor their daughter's promise but still save their children from the Kallipilluit. And they succeed at rescuing their children without compromising their values.
This story is a fable which teaches about Inuit culture while illustrating important psychological issues of trust, parental responsiblilty, and truth-telling. A savvy parent or therapist might well use this story as a starting point for a discussion of these issues. Or one can equally well just enjoy the story and pictures.
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on May 23, 2014
I remember reading this book as a child and I love sharing it with my kids now. This is a good book for teaching kids to keep their word.
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on January 3, 2013
A great book for teaching and the understanding of a promise is a promise for the grandkids . loved it.
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on December 2, 2014
Excellent story, gorgeous illustrations.
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on March 16, 2015
Wonderful, like all of Munsch's books.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on May 8, 2003
I'm fascinated about this book. It contains 3 bits information.
#1. you can not break a promise
#2. stay away from the ocean
#3. have an adult supervising you.
I hope there are more books like this!
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on July 10, 2014
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