It is the late 1800s, and a shameful time in American history. The U.S. Government has mandated native tribes send their young people to Indian schools where they are stripped of their native heritage by people they think of as The Others.
Otter and Sun Song are members of The Tribe, and betrothed to be married when they turn eighteen. But when they are sent East to school, Otter, renamed Gideon, tries to adapt, while Sun Song does not, resulting in brutal attacks from the school headmaster. Gideon, thinking Sun Song has spurned him, turns for comfort to Wendy Thatcher, the daughter of a wealthy school patron, beginning a forbidden affair of the heart.
But the Spirits have different plans for Gideon and Sun Song. “You are both child and mother of The Original People,” Sun Song is told. “When it is right, you will be safe once more.” What follows is a harrowing journey through time and the Five Worlds of the Desert Southwest tribes.
“Smoky Zeidel crafted well-developed characters and an inventive and clever concept about the struggle of two specific individuals striving to maintain their beliefs and endure their current circumstances. The ending [had] a twist the reader could never imagine. The Storyteller’s Bracelet is, in the end, about changing history and the future through how we treat others. — Manhattan Book Review
Making a Case for Myth in Modern Life
Review by Joey Madia
“Frequent readers of my book reviews and creative writing are well aware of my belief that mythology, folktales, and multicultural tales, and storytelling in general, are an all-too-often missing and yet vitally important element of a healthy mind and well-functioning society (I am in the process of writing a new book about it), so when I got the opportunity to read and review this book, I jumped at the chance.
I was not disappointed.
Smoky Zeidel is not a Native American, as she tells us in the book’s Afterword. And yet she captures the syntax, symbolism, and simple beauty of the Native American expression of human experience with an artistry that makes for almost hypnotic reading….” read the full review on Literary Aficionado.
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“The Storyteller’s Bracelet takes the best of the creation stories of Native Americans and weaves them together into a tale offering a new universal truth. It is insightful and poignant, telling the story of the harsh realities of the Indian Schools of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. It examines the mystical beliefs of the Native Americans, especially through Sun Song’s character and shows a people who are deeply connected to the world around, far more so than the conquering ‘white’ man….” read the full review on Tracy Riva Books & Reviews.
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“There are many twists in the plot that complicate matters and a few magical moments that had me in awe. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Native American tales. Ms. Zeidel’s prose is easy to read, highly descriptive, and inspiring…” read the full review on Big Al’s Books and Pals.