*ARC provided via Netgalley in exchange of an honest review*
Author: David A. Robertson
Illustrator: Scott B. Henderson
Release Date: May 31st, 2016
Genres: Comics & Graphic
Series: Tales from Big Spirit
On her way to school one day, Sarah is relieved to find the book she’d dropped the day before – shortly after an encounter with a bear. But when she opens it, the story within, about the Cree chief Mistahimaskwa, comes alive. It takes Sarah back to the Saskatchewan Plains of 1832, where the young boy who would become the great chief first learns the ways of his people, to the final days of his life.
This graphic novel, which summarizes the life of one of the Cree Chiefs who tried to do what he felt was best for his people when the white man came to their land, is geared towards educating 4-6 graders on Indigenous History in Canada.
When studying,I’ve always found it to be more engaging and prolific when aided by visuals, especially appealing colorful ones like these, and in that regard, this seven-book graphic novel series will definitely help students make historical connections and remember the subject.
Sure, the one point of argument could be the superficiality of historical narrative, but considering that this is adressed to 4-6 graders and not meant as an exclusive reference text but as a supplement, I don’t think the fact that it could have been fleshed out a bit, giving more context for what was going on during this time period, has to be held against The Chief – Mistahimaskwa.