The Girl Who Loved Wild Horses

  • Title: The Girl Who Loved Wild Horses
  • Author: Paul Goble
  • Illustrator: Paul Goble
  • Publisher: Aladdin Paperbacks, an imprint of Simon & Schuster
  • Publication year: 1978
  • Brief Summary: From Simon & Schuster-“‘There was a girl in the village who loved horses… She led the horses to drink at the river. She spoke softly and they followed. People noticed that she understood horses in a special way.’ And so begins the story of a young Native American girl devoted to the care of her tribe’s horses. With simple text and brilliant illustrations. Paul Goble tells how she eventually becomes one of them to forever run free.”
  • Ideas for using this book in classroom or library – Much like we discussed in class, this Native American retelling has no source material quoted or referenced. Furthermore, the date of publication would make me wonder if it would still be in circulation. I do not think this would be taught in school libraries today.
  • Whatever additional notes you’d like to add about this book and why you liked or didn’t like it – While the artwork in this book is filled with colorful imagery and what looks like “traditionally” garbed Native Americans, I read this article from American Indians in Children’s Literature that distinctly changed my mind about this book. The article also brings up many of the problems I felt this book had, and namely about sources. Like other books I have read for this project, I would think the stereotypical view of Native Americans and Native American life only in their traditional trappings is outdated. We as school librarians and as librarians in general have to shy away from books like these and instead find and buy books by Native American authors and/or featuring an authentic Native American voice.

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