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The Legend of the Bluebonnet
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The Legend of the Bluebonnet (Legends)

4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  2,632 ratings  ·  122 reviews
Thick clusters of vivid blue flowers, which resemble old-fashioned sunbonnets, cover the Texas hills in the springtime every year. These lovely wild flowers, known by the name of bluebonnet, are the state flower of Texas. This favorite legend based on Comanche Indian lore, tells the story of how the bluebonnet came to be. Tomie dePaola's powerful retelling and his magnific ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published March 25th 1983 by Putnam Juvenile
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Another one we had to read for school but we really liked this one. We've read several by Tomie dePaola in the past and love his books. This was no exception. An educational story about giving up something important to you for those that you love, it shows that even children have the power to be brave. My 5 yr old loved this story and so did I. Not only the moral lesson here, but there's lots of learning about the American Indian culture. We learned about tipi's (how they spell it in the book), ...more
Philip Carlson
The legend of the bluebonnet is the courageous story of a young Comanche girl named, She-Who-Is-Alone, and her selfless act of saving her people from famine and drought. She-Who-Is-Alone cherishes her warrior doll, which was made for her by many different people in her family using precious materials valued by her People. The Comanche have been experiencing a severe drought and there is not enough food for everyone to eat. The Shaman speaks to the Great Spirits and they instruct him to offer a ...more
Skylar Burris
My daughter asked me for "a book about Indians" when we were at the library, and so I picked up this Native American legend of the origin of bluebonnets, a legend about the temptation to cling to material things. I was pleasantly surprised and impressed by the formal, rhymed, metrical telling of the story and by its positive spiritual message, which I admittedly had to somewhat re-explain to my daughter in terms of our own Christian tradition: "where your treasure is, there will your heart be al ...more
Aug 21, 2007 Efrat rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
There was a time when I had an intense interest in all things Native American and, in response, I think my parents bought this book for me. To date, I've probably read it about 100 times. The writing is simple bordering austere yet ultimately uplifting. The illustrations are lovely to look at and a true representation of De Paola's illustration style. She-Who-Is-Alone is one of my favorite literary heroines of all time. Her selflessness always makes me cry, which can be problematic when reading ...more
Alexandra Escamilla
The Comanche tribe is threated by disease and famine. In order to save their people, the people must give a burnt offering of their most valuable possession. The Comanche people begin giving their offerings. A young girl, She-Who-Is-Alone, decided to give her most prized possession and only thing left from her family, a warrior doll. She went up on the hill and gave her doll to the Great Spirits. When she awoke, the land was covered with beautiful bluebonnets. The people sang and gave thanks to ...more
Victoria Leininger-halpern
This book is focused on the legend of a flower called the Bluebonnet, and how it came to grow in Texas, and how a little girl known as She-Who-Is-Alone helped her tribe have these beautiful flowers through her selfless sacrifice.

As far as stories go, this book has a strong plot about sacrificing for the greater good and helping others, which is an important theme children should learn. Being selfless and doing things for others, without having personal gain, should be taught to children to ensu
Rosa Cline
This is a wonderfully written 'tale' from the Comanche People. The land was dry and people were dying. When the medicine man went and prayed he came back to tell the tribe they must give up something very important and special and it would then rain. A little girl that only had a doll left from her family, everyone else had died. She loved her doll because it reminded her of her parents and grandparents but she knew she MUST sacrifice and burn her beloved doll. And by doing that she saved her pe ...more
Genre: Traditional Literature
Awards: None
Grade level: K-2
I would use this book in my classroom while learning about flowers or about the Native American culture. After reading the book to my class I would have them cut out bluebonnet flowers and have them write their most prized possession on the flower. Then hang them up around the classroom. This book is important because it teaches students about sacrifice and the Native American culture.
Ashley Snarr
I fell in love with this book as soon as I read the first page. I come from Native American ancestors, so anything deals with the culture or traditions of Native Americans fascinates me. The pictures for this book are illustrated beautifully. What I really enjoyed though was the end of the story. This girl has lost everything and she gives up the one thing that means everything to her. The author then illustrates true native american culture when the village renames her. It is important to have ...more
A little girl gives up her most precious possession to help end her tribe's suffering.She is rewarded with blue flowers growing all around her.
Cassandra Neal
This book is the story of a little girl named She-Who-Is-Alone who sacrificed her most prized procession, her warrior doll whose eyes, nose and mouth were painted on buckskin with the juice of berries, in order to end a drought and famine in order to save her people, The Comanche tribe. Her selfless act of burning her doll, prompted the Great Spirits to bless the land with a warm rain and where the ashes of her precious doll fell, each spring bluebonnets appear. The selfless act of She-Who-Is-Al ...more
The Legend of the Bluebonnet tells the story of an old Native American legend about a young girl who is willing to give up her most cherished possession to save her people from the drought that threatens to destroy the tribe. Because of the drought, the Shaman asks the Great Spirits for rain. The Great Spirits message to the tribe is that the Comanche people must sacrifice their most important possession or the dry season will continue. The only willing member to make the needed sacrifice is a y ...more
The Legend of the Bluebonnet written and illustrated by Tomie DePaola
Published by G.P. Putnam's Sons
Legend: Picture Book
Ages 6 to 10

This picture book retells the legend of how bluebonnet flowers came to Texas. The story centers around She-Who-Is-Alone, her Comanche tribe and their Shaman. It is set in a time before settlers came to Native American land in Texas. There has been a great drought and the tribe is asking the Great Spirits for rain. When the Shaman returns from the top of the hill
The Legend of the Bluebonnet is a stirring, uniquely powerful look at an old Native American legend about a young girl who is willing to give up her most cherished possession to save her people from the drought and famine that threaten to wipe them entirely off the map.

The Comanche tribe's shaman returns from a consultation with the Great Spirits to convey an urgent message to all members of the tribe: The land's lack of productivity is a direct result of the people's continually growing self
Jill Wolosonovich
A. The Legend of the Bluebonnet
• The overriding theme is the value of self-sacrifice for the greater good of the whole.
• The theme evolves naturally from the plot— the tribe is experiencing starvation due to a drought -- the shaman shares the solution to their problem – She-Who-Is-Alone realizes her sacrifice would be the greatest and mean the most – the theme builds to a crescendo when she throws her warrior doll, most valued possession, into the fire – in the morning the Great Spirits have sh
Michelle Cepeda
This is an excellent book to read to young children - as well as for young children to read themselves. It teaches children to think about others before themselves. It also teaches about the culture of the Comanche. I enjoyed reading this book, and I'm sure children would love it too. In my personal opinion, if more people were like the young girl from the story, this world would be a much better place. I definitely recommend this book to anyone, both children and adults!

Learning Extension: This
Brittney Griffith
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This book is an excellent display of good character. It shows children that no matter how small they are, their sacrifice matters as in the story where the little girl sacrifices the only possession she owned so there will be rain and people can be saved from famine.
Tomie de Paola discusses important issues such as family, community and nature. All children can surely enjoy this, but I would recommend this book at the Kindergarten level due to His usage of extraordinary vocabulary such as, drou
The Legend of the Bluebonnet is a touching story of love and sacrifice. The illustrations are colorful and active. This book would definitely be more geared towards a slightly older audience due to the more complex story line and small print of the words. This would be a great book to introduce a history or culture lesson. Also, it would be great to transition into a social-emotional theme or activity. This book is a re-telling of a folk tale, so it would be a great way to start talking about wh ...more
An unseasonably long drought orphans a Native American girl, leaving her with only memories and a warrior doll. When she sacrifices her beloved possession with the hope of ending the famine, she awakens the next morning to find a reward of her selflessness – a thick clusters of vivid blue flowers spread all over the Texas hills. A beautifully illustrated, accurate depiction of Comache cultural dress, lifestyle, songs, dances, and prayers.
Dustin Roberts
When a drought and famine strike a Comanche community, a lot of the elderly and young die. But a young girl named SHE-WHO-IS-ALONE is spared. Without any family left, the most precious thing in her life is a doll made by her mother and father. Little does the community know, this doll is the greatest blessing they could ever hope for.

A very uplifting traditional Native American tale centered on compassion and selflessness on the part of a young girl. Young children will greatly benefit from it
Sharon Medina
The Comanche Indians are in need of rain to end the drought so they dance and ask the God is what they have done to anger them. The shaman of the tribe went to a hill to listen to the Great Spirits to see what they need to do in order for it to rain again. The Great Spirits told the shaman that they must make a burnt offering of their most prize possession. The young girl who is alone had only one item to remind her of her family, which is gone. She made the decision that her doll is the prize p ...more
Sep 30, 2008 booklady rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: children...of ALL ages
While I love all of Tomie dePaola's books, this is one of my all-time favorites. Skylar reminded me the other day to pull it out and reread it--something I haven't done in awhile. I used to read it to every one of my religious education classes. It is the story of a little girl who (spoiler alert) gives up her favorite -- and only -- possession to save the life of her people. Because of the importance of her sacrifice, as well as because children can relate to it, I liked to use this story to te ...more
Dundee Library
A great introduction to the concept of legends as well a a wonderful pre-Christmas read illustrating a true gift from the heart. Tomie dePaola's illustrations and simple text draw the reader in and keep even young children interested throughout the story. An orphaned Indian girl is the main character. After loosing her parents to a famine that has killed many of her people, she saves her tribe by throwing her only possession, a doll made by her parents, into a fire meant to symbolize to the gods ...more
Särah Nour
This is the Native legend of the origin of the state flower of Texas, the bluebonnet, and what it represents for the Comanche people. In a time of drought and famine, the tribal elder declares that a sacrifice to the Great Spirits will bring rain and revitalize their crops. Within the tribe is an orphaned girl named She-Who-is-Alone, who takes it upon herself to make a sacrifice that will save her people and sow the seeds of the bluebonnet.

Far more than a Native legend made accessible for childr
Brittany Baker
This story tells the legend of how the bluebonnet flower came to be in Texas, however, it also tells much more than that. This story is also one of great sacrifice. The little girl had nothing, she had lost all her family to the famine, yet she was willing to sacrifice the one thing she had left of them all to save the People. Not many people would make such a sacrifice. I think this story produces a sense of selflessness, a quality that I believe all people should strive to have. In today's soc ...more
Justyna Johns
I love Tomie dePaola, and this book is no exception. A beautiful story of scarifying something dear for the benefit of others. Perfect lesson to teach what is means to be a part of community, and how everybody has a responsibility to help out.
Ms Threlkeld
A riveting story about the sacrifice one young girl is willing to make for her tribe. This could lead to some thoughtful discussion with kids about being selfless and acting for the greater good.
I completely remember the day that my school librarian read this book outloud to my 3rd grade class in 1987. It totally won me over in that moment, so much so that it became one of those memories where you can remember the color of the carpet and the way you were sitting, and what the weather was like outside. Since becoming a teacher many years ago, I have read it countless times to my own students. Of course, I always have to read it alone first, though, since it makes me cry every time. Mr. d ...more
Morgan Davis
She-Who-Is-Alone is a little girl that lives in a tribe all by herself because her closes family were hit hard because of the drought anf famine. She had a warrior doll that meant a lot to her because her mother and father made it for her. It had been along time since the land had seen rain and the "Great Spirits" were coming to take an item from the tribe in return for rain. Everyone in the trible knew the warrior doll was very important, but She-Who-Is-Alone didn't want to give it up. But one ...more
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Tomie dePaola (pronounced Tommy da-POW-la) is best known for his books for children.
He's been published for 40 years and has written and/or illustrated over 200 books, including 26 Fairmount Avenue, Strega Nona, and Meet the Barkers.
Tomie dePaola and his work have been recognized with the Caldecott Honor Award, the Newbery Honor Award and the New Hampshire Governor's Arts Award of Living Treasure.
More about Tomie dePaola...
Strega Nona The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush The Art Lesson Nana Upstairs and Nana Downstairs The Clown of God

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