Fuse 8 n’ Kate: Jingle Dancer by Cynthia Leitich Smith
I was wracking my brain to figure out what the best possible candidate might be as a contender for classic picture book status with an #ownvoices Indigenous creator. Generally speaking, when fishing for classics, Kate and I like to look at books that have been out for 20 years. And so, the minute that it became 2020, I ran over to my library’s children’s room and checked out today’s title. Now the question of the day with this podcast is whether, in light of the truly magnificent children’s books coming out from Native and Indigenous authors, Jingle Dancer still stands up.
- You can find more information about The American Indian Youth Literature Award here.
- My theory is that when a book is published in the first year of the new decade, it often looks like it belongs to the previous decade. As such, this book feels pretty 90s. Case in point:
- If you look closely that isn’t a skull on the front of Elizabeth’s Law Review, but from a distance . . .
- One takeaway we got from this book is that if HarperCollins chose to reprint it, this backmatter would probably be extended. I don’t mean that it would require Fry Bread-length information, but possibly more facts than it received in 2000. Bear in mind that backmatter was not the norm in the year of its publication, so it’s impressive that there’s anything there at all. Still, I think one of the takeaways Kate and I took from the book was that there were still questions at the end of her read and additional info would have been welcome.
- Referring back to our previous episode, are you curious about the good work Peggy Rathmann is doing these days? You can check out the New York Times article on her as of 2018 here. Sure would love to see a picture book on regenerative agriculture. Just sayin’ (hint hint).
- Feel out to sea about the Oh Na Na Na TikTok Dance Challenge? Here’s a quickie compilation of the latest dance I hadn’t heard of:
Filed under: Fuse 8 n' Kate
About Betsy Bird
Betsy Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.
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