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James Houston.
Toronto, ON: McClelland and Stewart, 1986.
94pp., cloth, $14.95.
ISBN 0-7710-4252-3. CIP.

Subject Heading:
Inuit-Canada-Juvenile fiction.

Grades 4-8 / Ages 9-13

Reviewed by Adele M. Fasick.

Volume 15 Number 2
1987 March

James Houston's portraits of the life of the Inuit are unparalleled in giving children a feeling for the hardships and rewards of northern life. The Falcon Bow is no exception. Houston tells the story of Kungo, an Inuk, whose parents have been killed and his sister captured by Indians. When the Inuit are starving because the caribou fail to return to the North, many Inuit believe that the Indians have set fires to prevent the animals' yearly trek. Kungo travels to the Indian country to try to discover the cause of the disappearance of the caribou.

There he learns that it was not the acts of the Indians, but fires started by lightning that caused this hardship. With the help of his sister, Shulu, now living happily with an Indian husband, Kungo persuades the Indians and the Inuit to live in peace. In a satisfying conclusion, Kungo and Shulu look forward to harmonious futures in their two cultures.

Although it lacks some of the dramatic confrontations of Houston's other adventure books, The Falcon Bow graphically portrays the difficulties and rewards of life in the Arctic and enables the reader to share the author's respect for the way in which both Indians and Inuit deal with conflicts and difficulties.

Highly recommended for school and public libraries.

Adele M. Fasick, Faculty of library and Information Science, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON.
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