Custer's Last Battle.

Author:McLaughlin, Mark
Position:Children's review - Book review

Paul Goble (author); CUSTER'S LAST BATTLE; Wisdom Tales (Children's: Juvenile Fiction) 16.95 ISBN: 9781937786113

Byline: Mark McLaughlin

The last great battle of the Indian Wars comes alive for children and adults in accurate, illustrated text.

Custer's Last Battle is a gorgeously illustrated, fictionalized yet well-researched account of the Battle of the Little Bighorn told from the point of view of a fifteen-year-old Oglala Sioux warrior. Though brief, each of the forty-four pages is enlivened by beautifully rendered, full-color ledger-book art, with drawings presented in a relatively bloodless manner suitable for the youthful audience at which it is aimed.

First published more than forty years ago, this new version by Wisdom Tales includes not only revised and updated text but also a brighter, more brilliant remastering of the illustrations. As author and illustrator Paul Goble says, his original art work was scanned and updated "in glorious digitized color." Goble, who has won many awards as an illustrator since the original publication, has done a masterful job of not merely copying but perhaps improving on the "Egyptian perspective" of the "bright flat colors" and "detail drawing" style used by Native Americans in the nineteenth century. His drawings closely and faithfully mimic their own artistic depictions of the epic event and tell the story of Custer's Last Stand so clearly and concisely that graphic novelists, filmmakers, and historians would be envious.

The text is short and simple. While fictionalized, it is drawn from firsthand accounts of participants fighting on the bluffs overlooking the Little Big Horn River in June 1876. As Chief Joe Medicine Crow, now ninety-eight, explains in the foreword to this new edition, "Goble's retelling of the Custer battle" is not only "based on Indian sources. It is very accurate. So you can also learn the real story from this...

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