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Danny Blackgoat: NAVAJO PRISONER
Danny Blackgoat is a teenager in 1864 Navajo country when United States soldiers burn down his home, kill his sheep, capture his family, and force them all to walk at gunpoint to an Army fort far from their homeland. This forced exodus of the Navajo people was called the Long Walk of 1864, and during the journey, Danny is labeled a troublemaker and given the name Fire Eye. Refusing to accept captivity, he is sent to Fort Davis, Texas, a Civil War prisoner outpost. There he battles bullying fellow prisoners, rattlesnakes, and abusive soldiers, until he meets Jim Davis. Davis teaches Danny how to hold his anger and starts him on the road to literacy. In a stunning climax, Davis—who builds coffins for the dead—aids Danny in a daring and dangerous escape. Set in troubled times, Danny Blackgoat, Navajo Prisoner is the story of one boy’s hunger to be free and to be Navajo.
“Danny Blackgoat, Navajo Prisoner, a fast-paced historical novel, adds a memorable perspective to Native American literature for teens. This exciting novel will be enjoyed by readers interested in stories about hidden, unjustly imprisoned, or marginalized teens who seek to escape and get justice.”
VOYA October 2013
"Tingle, a Choctaw storyteller, spins a good yarn and, along with other respectful references to Navajo culture, ingeniously leverages its particular aversion to mention of or contact with the dead to magnify the terror of Danny’s climactic challenge. Not an angry indictment, despite plenty of explicit brutality and prejudice, but a positive tribute to the fortitude of Danny and his Navajo community.
Kirkus Reviews June 2013