Storyteller, whose calling has been passed down to him from a long line of storytellers, looks for stories everywhere until a magical adventure to Blue Mountain teaches him that his storytelling powers are within himself.
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Grade 4-6The Talking Bird and the Story Pouch is a story of discovery. The Storyteller is expected to be the greatest storyteller of all, as was his father, and his father's father, and his father's father's father. They have been given the power to find stories through the Talking Bird, a wood carving in the form of an open-mouthed heron, and they store the stories in a beaver-skin pouch worn around the neck. But the Storyteller is convinced that the stories he finds are never as good as the ones already in the pouch, so he stays home and fishes. He leaves only when the Wise Old Mother sends him out to find a horse. On the way, the Storyteller discovers two thingsstories need to be told and shared, not kept in a pouch, and the power of finding stories lies not in the Talking Bird, but in him. Like a folktale, the story is told simply, without elaboration, but while a good folktale reveals much in few words, this book is hollow and reveals little. The characters are nameless icons with no personality of their own. The only one worth remembering is the Kulloo Makoo, a rabbit-eared fish who eats stories, and who makes a brief appearance in the beginning of the Storyteller's journey. Even the stories that the Storyteller tells are strange, flat little tales that have little meaning either on their own or in the larger context of the book. There is probably a good idea behind all this, but it didn't translate into a good book.Susan Harding, Mesquite North Branch Library, Ariz.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Harpercollins Childrens Books, 1987. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 006023833X