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Children's Literature Reviews
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by Gary Paulsen.
New York : Delacorte Press, c1990.
184 p. ; 22 cm.


Finding a skull on a camping trip in the canyons outside El Paso, Texas, Brennan becomes involved with the fate of a young Apache Indian who lived in the late 1800s.

Best Books:

Books for You: An Annotated Booklist for Senior High, Eleventh Edition, 1992 ; National Council of Teachers of English; United States
Middle And Junior High School Library Catalog, Eighth Edition, 2000 ; H.W. Wilson; United States
Young Adults' Choices, 1992 ; International Reading Association; United States

Awards, Honors, Prizes:

ABC Children's Booksellers Choices Award, 1991 Winner Young Adult Fiction United States
Jefferson Cup Award, 1991 Worthy of Special Note Virginia

State and Provincial Reading Lists:

Golden Sower Award, 1993 ; Nominee; Young Adult; Nebraska
Lone Star Reading List, 1991-1992 ; Reading List; Texas
Texas Reading Club, 2002 ; Texas
Utah Children's Book Awards, 1993 ; Nominee; Young Adult; Utah
Young Adult Reading Program, 1992 ; Grades 7-12; South Dakota


Kirkus (Kirkus Reviews, 1990)
An Apache boy on the verge of manhood is brutally executed by Army patrols; over 100 years later a contemporary 15-year-old finds his shattered skull and--responding to a compelling inner voice emanating from the skull--begins a journey to vindicate and give rest to its troubled spirit, somehow knowing that he must carry out this task in order to regain his own peace. The phrase "I am to be a man," reiterated in the first chapter, induces some poetic and semantic resonance but is also an example of the uncurtailed writing that nearly dims this tale. Still, readers patient enough to survive the repetitive ruminations, the too-deliberate epicycles, and the unlikely details (especially a library that, as a friendly gesture, ships seven large boxes of photocopied data--and a boy who can find the crucial bit therein in one night) will be rewarded with an insightful, sympathetic vignette of the tragic end of a life, plus an intriguing glimpse of the contrast between what really happens and the clues that are left behind. 1990, Delacorte, $14.95. © 1990 Kirkus Reviews/VNU eMedia, Inc. All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly (Publishers Weekly)
Brennan is a young loner of the type that will be instantly familiar to Paulsen fans. Coyote Runs is a 19th-century Apache boy who was murdered during the raid that was to mark his entry into manhood. The two boys' stories come together when Brennan unearths Coyote Runs's skull and grows obsessed with the Apache's history. A sort of psychic link is forged, and Brennan learns that Coyote Runs's spirit will have no rest until his skull is taken to a sacred spot in the canyons. Brennan therefore undertakes a grueling and unusual journey which serves as a modern-day coming-of-age ritual. Terse language keeps the story moving at a brisk pace. This novel is not as engrossing as Hatchet , nor is it likely to appeal to as wide an audience. However, readers with an appetite for Paulsen's blend of nature and mysticism will overlook Canyons 's predictable plot and find much to savor in its spirit. Ages 12-up. (Sept.)


Apache Indians--Fiction.
Indians of North America--Texas--Fiction.
LanguageCall NumberLCCNDewey DecimalISBN/ISSN
English (eng) PZ7.P2843 Can 1990
90002829 [Fic]
0385301537 : $14.95 ($18.95 Can.)
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