Stepping Stones to the Sun

A Cheyenne boy comes of age during the clash of cultures that marked America's western frontier in the late 1800s.

by Nawashani * Illustrated by Pat Wiles

Stepping Stones to the Sun
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Stepping Stones to the Sun

A Cheyenne boy comes of age during the clash of cultures that marked America's western frontier in the late 1800s.

by Nawashani * Illustrated by Pat Wiles

Published Jul 30, 2013
67 Pages
Genre: JUVENILE FICTION / Action & Adventure / General



 

Book Details

Stepping Stones to the Sun is told through the eyes of a Native American boy coming of age during the clash of cultures that marked America's western frontier in the late 1800s. Facing the prospect of being sent far away to the white man's school, where he fears he will lose his identity as a Cheyenne, and perhaps his life, Little Beaver overcomes his anger and frustration through a suspenseful encounter with a grizzly bear that changes his destiny.

"Stepping Stones to the Sun is a charming tale blending Cheyenne legend and a boy's search for his life purpose. Illustrated with delightful art, this book is sure to enchant readers of all ages." Jan Weeks, author of The Centerville Code and Silverton Summer.

"The author explores the challenge of change faced by every adolescent in this stirring tale of child and beast, an exciting story beautifully told that will uplift and inspire." Corinne J. Brown, author of MacGregor's Lantern and Sanctuary Ranch.

 

Book Excerpt

Shielding his eyes momentarily from the blinding, wind-driven snow, Little Beaver spied a cleft in the rocky face of the mountainside. It wasn’t very big, but it might be the entrance to a small cave.

He took a deep breath, bowed his head into the wind and continued along the path. In one trembling hand he clutched his elmwood bow, the one made for him by his grandfather. It would not do to lose such a bow. It was going to be hard enough to explain to his father and mother how he had gotten himself lost.

Just as Little Beaver neared the welcome opening in the rocks, his head jerked up at the crash of falling rock. A huge female grizzly bear lumbered directly toward him out of the wind-whipped whiteness of the blizzard.

Fear grabbed Little Beaver and held him in his tracks. The she-bear came to a sliding halt at the same time and reared up on her hind legs, sniffing the air with her shiny black nose.

As the bear flailed the air with her paws, Little Beaver stared at her claws. They were long and curved and sharp as obsidian. Instantly, visions of the damage an enraged grizzly could do to a human flashed through his mind. He remembered all too vividly the day the men of the tribe had carried the body of the warrior, Brave Elk, into camp after he had been horribly mauled by a she-bear protecting her cubs. The gory sight and the high-pitched trilling of his women singing his death song had sent the same shudders through Little Beaver that he was experiencing now.

Was this the same bear?

 

About the Author

Nawashani * Illustrated by Pat Wiles

Nawashani is the pen name of Patricia G. Martin, an accomplished author who has published hundreds of articles on the American West, as well as the historical novel, A Meadowlark Calling, a true story of homesteading on the frontier in the late 1800s. Drawing upon her passion as a lifelong student of Native American culture, Martin authored Stepping Stones to the Sun, her first children's book. A member of Western Writers of America, she lives in Grand Junction, Colo., where she continues to write about the West.

Illustrator Pat Wiles is a horsewoman and nationally known professional transparent watercolor artist and children's book illustrator. She lives in Canon City, Colorado, with her partner and a menagerie of animals.