Monday, January 12, 2015

The Butterfly Basket ~ A Book About Our Canyon


Over the years, I have told stories of my life in a canyon in the California mountains; of life with hubby and dogs, of wild animals, birds, and plants, but next to nothing of the history of the canyon and its people. 

Cindy Waldman, a friend from our knitting group, has written a book for children and young adults that takes place right here in our canyon. She named the book The Butterfly Basket after a real basket woven by Rosie Hicks, a young Kawaiisu Indian woman, about one hundred years ago. I found pictures of Rosie's basket online:



The Butterfly Basket

After the death of his wife during the Great Depression, Sara's father faces severe financial problems and decides to send Sara and her brother Joey to stay with his parents, who live in a hot and dusty canyon in the mountains of California. While Joey adapts fast to the cowboy lifestyle, Sara has a difficult time as she mourns her mother and misses her dad. 

Then she meets Lena, a Kawaiisu girl about her own age. Lena's mother is also dead and she lives with her grandmother. Lena takes Sara on many outings in the mountains, where she has to face her fears and overcome them, as she finds out about rattlesnakes, bears, mountain lions, flash floods, and much more. Sara also learns about medicinal plants, basket weaving, Kawaiisu traditions and language. Most importantly, Lena shows Sara that her mother is always with her. It takes a while, but eventually Sara comes to see the truth of this. 

At the end of this delightful book, Sara makes a choice that involves a beautiful butterfly basket woven by Lena's mother. She makes her choice based on friendship and the lessons she has learned while living in the canyon.


I found this book to be spiritual, wise, and a delight to read. The book is recommended for ages 8 and up. I'm convinced this book has no upper age limit and that adults will enjoy it as much as I did.  

I loved The Butterfly Basket and recommend it to anyone of you, my blogger friends, who would like to know more about the history of this area, of the Kawaiisu people, the plants and animals that sustained them and provided materials for their magnificent baskets. Or maybe you have kids or grandkids who would enjoy a delightful book about the adventures of a young girl learning about life and change here in our beautiful canyon. 










26 comments:

  1. Dear Inger ... I remember you mentioning Rosie's basket before .. so I'm pleased you've put up the link here - I see it's available in the UK .. and I'll probably get it .. and pass it on to friends with young children. Wonderful tales and history can be found - and I'm sure having a book about your Canyon brings the days of yore back to life ... though you're here in the present. I love the idea of the butterfly woven into the basket ...

    I hope there are many sales .. cheers Hilary

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  2. Good morning Inger!
    I always love to read about the amazing stories of your life in the California mountains, to know about your life with your dear husband, with your adorable dogs, and also of wild animals, birds, plants and so one.
    "The Butterfly Basket", by your friend Cindy Waldman, sounds a delightful book indeed, and I would love to know more about the history of your area. Thanks for the link to amazon. And the butterfly basket is really beautiful!
    Lots of hugs.

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  3. I fit right in the age group 8 and up. It really sounds interesting with a great message. Will check it out and thanks for the review.
    The basket work is beautiful.

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  4. i know you enjoyed it because it is like our much loved canyon... sounds like a wonderful book

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  5. This is a great book review. It sounds so interesting. That basket is gorgeous. Thanks for this.
    Happy reading.
    Hugs,
    JB

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  6. how neat. and a wonderful basket, too. congrats to your friend!

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  7. It looks like book I would really enjoy. I looked at it on AZ and it sure has great reviews! Love your new snowy banner, too! Hugs!

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  8. This sounds like a lovely book and my daughter is 8.5 so the perfect age. We are going to check it out. Thanks!

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  9. I am in the right age group, lovely story, and your friend is a super writer. Take care Inger, as your summer arrives, down here we have darker mornings, and the first heavy dew, wonderful for lawn and garden.

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  10. Nice story and such a beautiful basket!

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  11. Thank you for the review . Sounds like a lovely book !

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  12. How nice of you to spotlight her book. The basket looks lovely. The best children books have no upper age limit. And this sounds like one of them. :-)

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  13. That sounds very good, and I love the basket.

    Love,
    Janie

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  14. It sounds like a lovely book. I am sure I would enjoy it. I am off to see if it is offered at Barnes and Nobel

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  15. Thanks, Inger, for the wonderful review!

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  16. My mother writes children's books. I will tell her about this one, she would surely enjoy reading it.

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  17. Beautiful basket, Inger. It is good to know more about our surroundings and the indigenous peoples who lived here.
    I am reading a similar book/account of a young couple who moved from Oregon in the 30's too live in the northern part of British Columbia.....they had to learn from the native people there in order to survive.

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  18. Life has such coincidences ~ I was listening to a singer on the radio today relating her story regarding her mother and that she is with her now that she is gone. Your book sounds quite revealing and full of subtle knowledge Inger. Thanks for this reconfirmation!
    Ron

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  19. Sounds like a lovely book and what a beautiful basket.

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  20. There's something about the basket that is magical . . . I mean, it "speaks" to the soul. Great review. Ordering the book!

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  21. Wow, this looks like a fun story to read to my boys.
    Thank you for sharing.
    Carla

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  22. What a sweet story and it sounds like an amazing book. Good luck to Cindy!

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  23. I'll see if our local library has it - sounds sweet and nice and educational. thanks.

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  24. A beautiful basket -- and the book sounds really interesting.

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  25. That basket is quite extraordinary--such fine craftsmanship. It's fun to find books and stories about the places we live.

    Lee
    Tossing It Out

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  26. Anything you recommend I will read - you havent steered me wrong yet!

    And Love your header photo - the snow is one of natures most beautiful "cloaks" !

    xoxo

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Thanks for leaving a comment.. ~~ Inger

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