The Storyteller: My Years with Ernest Thompson Seton
Ernest Thompson Seton, the storyteller of the title, was renowned as an author, artist, environmentalist, and cofounder of Boy Scouts of America. But to the six-year-old Leila Moss Knox, who lived for three years with Seton and her “Aunt Julie” in the 1930s, he was Granddaddy. Knox recaptures the enchanted spell in her childhood, dipping into such Seton favorites as Wild Animals I Have Known and Lives of the Hunted. Some may seem a tad cloying now but are still great read-aloud tales as they introduce true details about wildlife.
Seton’s ruggedness (illustrated with great photographs amid the narrative) makes this a “grandpa” book too, one that boys can enjoy every bit as much as girls do. One of Seton’s many accomplishments was the ability to transmit his appreciation of Indian lore. Illustrations of traditional hand signs and pictographs will reinvigorate the weariest young hikers.
The book is quite hefty for little hands, allowing adults a chance to share with the children. All in all, the stories and ideas involving nature (who knew porcupine quills were so adaptable?) are definitely more exciting than plastic and junk-item crafts for channeling artistic creativity and imagination.
Leila Moss Knox—good on you for holding on to the memories and sharing them!
|Langdon Street Press
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