Russell Hoban Soonchild

ISBN 13: 9781406344189

Soonchild

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9781406344189: Soonchild
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"Hoban is the best sort of genius." Patrick Ness, The Guardian Somewhere in the Arctic Circle, Sixteen-Face John, a shaman, learns that his first child, a soonchild, cannot hear the World Songs from her mother's womb. The World Songs are what inspire all newborns to come out into the world, and John must find them for her. But how? The answer takes him through many lifetimes and many shape-shifts, as well as encounters with beasts, demons and a mysterious benevolent owl spirit, Ukpika, who is linked to John's past...

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About the Author:

Russell Hoban is the author of many acclaimed novels for grown-ups, including Turtle Diary and Riddley Walker. He once described himself as "an addict to writing" and wrote more than 50 books for children, including such classics as Bedtime for Frances, How Tom Beat Captain Najork and His Hired Sportsmen and The Sea-Thing Child. Born in Pennsylvania in 1925, he moved to London in 1969, where he lived until his death in 2011. Alexis Deacon's first picture book, Slow Loris was shortlisted for the Blue Peter Book Award. His second, Beegu, was shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Award and selected by the New York Times as one of the year's best illustrated children's books. In 2008, he was chosen as one of the Booktrust's ten Best New Illustrators. A Place to Call Home (9781406323023), illustrated by Viviane Schwarz, was nominated for the 2011 Roald Dahl Funny prize. He lives in London, SE15.

From School Library Journal:

Gr 9 Up-In the far north, Sixteen-Face John and his wife, No Problem, cannot convince their daughter, Soonchild, to be born. The spirits have left, and she cannot hear the World Songs of nature. Although John is a shaman, he wastes his time drinking Coca-Cola, watching TV, and reading magazines with centerfolds. No Problem and her friends scrape hides to earn money for videos. To coax Soonchild forth, retrieve the songs, and save the world, John concocts a Big-Dream Brew. In his dream travels, he encounters various animals and spirits that help or hinder his quest. After overcoming fear, dying several times, and spending thousands of years in the spirit world, he retrieves the songs and returns. Soonchild emerges as Here and Now. When she grows up, she forms a band and writes songs that incorporate phrases from John's journey, turning a monumental quest into lyrics that generate celebrity and wealth. Hoban's intent is unclear. Is he paying homage to tales of Native peoples by incorporating characters such as Raven or making fun of them by giving people names such as Where Is It?, Take It Easy, and Way to Go? John's shaman Granny plays poker with her spirit friends and demands vodka and cigars before helping him. Deacon's charcoal-and-pencil drawings, particularly of animals such as the ice bear, walrus, and killer whale, are impressive. Some of the illustrated sequences advance the narrative more effectively than Hoban's words. The book may appeal to adults who enjoy Hoban's novels and will give literary scholars fodder for comparative studies with his other works. Consider as needed for academic libraries.-Kathy Piehl, Minnesota State University, Mankatoα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780763659202: Soonchild

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ISBN 10:  0763659207 ISBN 13:  9780763659202
Publisher: Candlewick, 2012
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9781406329919: Soonchild

Walker..., 2012
Hardcover

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