Patricia Hruby Powell came to writing via a circuitous route. Before becoming an author, she danced throughout Europe and the Americas, performed as a trapeze artist, worked in lithography, and as a librarian. Now Patricia tells stories throughout the United States, and accents her tales for all ages with dance, worldwide percussion instruments, and life-like animal sounds. In the course of her career she has received numerous awards and fellowships for her storytelling and choreography.
When the Navajos crops fail yet again, the boy Red Bird is sent to ask Spider Woman for her help. His journey leads him to a flock of sun-yellow birds, a lizard, a Gila monster, and a snake. To each of the animals, Red Bird asks the same question: Could you tell me where Spider Woman lives? At last, after traveling in each of the four directions, Red Bird finds Spider Woman sitting in her web. Will she help him?
Red Birds quest to save his people will serve as an inspiration to all readers with responsibilities that sometimes seem impossible to fulfill.
As fire creeps toward the village of the First People, First Man and First Woman must find a way to quench the flames. First Woman asks the Bird People, the River People, and the Water People for assistance, but everyone she speaks to has an excuse.
“Not me,” said Mockingbird. “The smoke would hurt my voice and I would never sing again.”
“Not me,” said Snail. “I carry my house with me and I am slow.”
“No,” said Beaver. “We’d like to help, but our river home would become a desert if we changed the flow of water.”
At last, First Woman asks the mysterious Frog for help. Will he be able to stop the flames before they reach the village?
Author Patricia Hruby Powell’s retelling of this Navajo folktale is as graceful as it is compelling, and as magical as the mythical time it describes. Enter the village of the First People … and become a part of the time when the world was new.