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Dawn Land

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  210 ratings  ·  47 reviews
Ten thousand years ago, in what would one day be known as North America, Young Hunter set out on an epic quest to overcome the Stone Giants who were terrorizing his people. Pitted against creatures of legend, Young Hunter journeyed to the innermost heart of his own humanity, even meeting the very gods of the land. He was entrusted with his tribe’s most dangerous secret, a ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published October 12th 2010 by First Second (first published 1993)
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(showing 1-30 of 511)
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Mary Beth
An amazing story, gracefully and elegantly retold in graphic form, I thoroughly enjoyed "Dawn Land." My only regret was how quickly it ended; I felt that a couple more pages of Young Hunter's journey home would have allowed for a more gentle release from the story.

That said, I loved this tale of an ancient New England and the people and mythologies that were here 10,000 years before us. Young Hunter is on a quest to defeat the Stone Giants, actual giants who terrorize and make meals of the "Onl
...more
Pauline
Aug 03, 2012 Pauline rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of myths, legends and folk tales
As a child, I distinctly remember cleaning out my local library's selection of myths/legends/and tales from around the world. There must have been around 40 books and I just couldn't get enough of them. When I had read all there was to offer, I was disappointed and wanted more. So, when I saw a graphic novel based off of a Native American tale, it was like I was a child again.

I really enjoyed Dawn Land. In a nutshell, it has all the basic elements of a fantastic legend. There is a prophecy/lege
...more
Joselito Honestly and Brilliantly
Ho-hum. Nothing really unique about the story: one supposedly special man, some friends, great ancestral past, friendly spirits, guiding dreams and apparitions, powerful enemies, a special weapon, moments when everything seemed lost. Like in what, The Lord of the Rings?

Lazy readers and those who appreciate good illustrations or drawings may rate this higher, however, since this is a graphic novel. The dialogue is sparse but one really needs to pay attention to some details in the characters (mal
...more
Ariel
THE ART, MAN, I DONT KNOW. One the one hand it felt really dramatic and organic and earthy and cool, but on the other hand it was too dark and hard to decipher and missing detail. Art is really subjective though, so what I see as too dark you might see as perfect. I would have liked a little more clarity, though.

As for the story, I'd say it was pretty average. It flipped perspectives a few times and I found the transitions poorly done. The story line also felt kind of muddy - i was often a littl
...more
Monique
Drawn in by the beautiful cover and intriguing plot, I picked this up for a steal through Bookoutlet. As it is, I'm glad I paid so little for it.

While the comic did make me wish to read the original novel that its adapted from, I found Davis's visual interpretation a bit lackluster. His illustrative style has promise but is more often than not confusing. Lack of negative space, dark shading and awkward panel transitions often make the action indiscernible. People look far too similar and are di
...more
Whitney
I enjoyed the story and writing style, and would consider reading the original novel. However I did not always like the art, which I feel prohibited me from fully investing in the experience of reading this graphic novel. Basically, the art was inconsistent, sometimes gorgeous and perfectly capturing the mood and detail of a scene, other times it was just downright bad. I appreciated the blurry, dream-like style because I felt it contributed to the mythic quality of the story, but unfortunately ...more
Emilia P
I understand that this was lovingly, thoughtfully made (thanks to the afterword) and I can say that the art was beautiful and haunting but, heck, I could not, for the life of me, follow it, and the things that happened just seemed hazy and disjointed to me, and so there is my jerk review. I think this book could have been wonderful with a bit more third-person narrative authority, but, lacking that, it was unfollowable for me. I am meanie.
Eden
This is the graphic novel version of Joseph Bruchac's 1993 novel Dawn Land. I haven't read the original novel, but I definitely want to!

This graphic novel tells the story of Young Hunter, who lives in what today would be known as North America. He has to set out on a quest to defeat the stone giants.

I think the artist, Will Davis, did a wonderful job. At the end of the graphic novel there is a note from Will Davis, explaining how he came to adapt Dawn Land into a graphic novel.

Like many of Josep
...more
[Name Redacted]
A beautiful and evocative adaptation of Bruchac's pre-historic mythical epic, a tale of the first bow and the defeat of the stone giants based in North Eastern Native American legends (specifically, Abenaki). I felt, while reading it, as though I were back in the forests of my childhood homes, wary of the hairy men and the blood-drinking skeletons.
Samantha Waxman
I absolutely love the "myth rewritten as graphic novel" genre, and this book is an excellent example. It's an absolutely beautiful retelling of a myth of the American Indians of New England: Ten thousand years ago (or so), the giants come to pillage and destroy the villages of the People of the Dawn. Young Hunter must go forth and defeat them, though in doing so, he must learn to use the most powerful weapon the People of the Dawn possess. But will this weapon destroy them too?

I love the art in
...more
Sarah
So "Dawn Land" by Joeseph Bruchac has been on my mental to read list for a long time. I enjoy Native American stories and writers, plus it won wheelbarrows full of awards. So imagine my surprise when I found there was a graphic novel adaptation of it. Now usually adaptations leave me a bit... nervous. There are a lot of bad ones out there. And having not read the original source material I cannot tell you if it's a faithful adaptation.

But as a graphic novel, it was BEAUTIFUL. It's a classic her
...more
Jason
I went into this book with no expectations and was pretty thoroughly blown away by it. Based on the novel of the same name by Joseph Bruchac, this book uses Native American myths to tell the story of two cousins set 10,000 years in America's past, where one young man is blessed by fate and the other is cursed by it.

From my review: "As a plot, Dawn Land seems fairly ordinary, but its execution, particularly artistically, is nothing short of extraordinary. Davis has a measured storytelling style,
...more
Nic
A fascinating book, full of the seemingly well-researched details of a culture very different from that of modern America. I'd recommend it to anthropologists, or those interested in prehistoric cultures or way-old American Indian history, just for that. Its unique voice, too, made the book interesting - the fact that it was written by a traditional Native American storyteller really shows. The descriptions especially are beautiful, simple, and poetic, and the straightforwardness makes the shock ...more
Dov
The art in this book is beautiful and the bringing of myth to life with an edge of historical fiction feeling works really well. This along with the intensity of emotion and action and interpersonal connections makes it a compelling read. There were a few places I was confused and some of the scenes felt rushed through or clipped. This seems like one of those graphic novel readings that would really benefit from a reading of the text it was adapted from. That said, I highly recommend this one.
Eli Poteet
The only criticism I have is my personal opinion that the creators didn't need to use the word "pussy" derogatorily. It's unnecessary and perpetuates a culture inhospitable to women. Adolescents will read this graphic novel and the use age of this putdown will be normalized.
Nonetheless, this ancient myth used countless real representations of an ancient culture and I enjoyed the black & white brush strokes.
Virginia
Part of what I liked about this book is that it's set in the area between the Hudson & Connecticut Rivers, north of where we live but similar terrain. Also, it takes place in "pre-contact" and/or "ceremonial" time (terms I learned from the book jacket) at the end of the last ice age and our newspaper has been running a series of articles on ancient stone and cave formations that are mysterious and unexplainable unless, to judge by this book, Indian mythologies provide the answers, which is a ...more
Emily Rogers
Audience: ages 13 and up

After giants eat his parents, Weasel Tail finds himself wounded and left alone to care for his baby cousin, Young Hunter. It is not long before the tribe finds the two orphans and takes them back to the village; but Weasel Tail and Young Hunter soon find themselves on very different paths. Barely a man, Young Hunter sets out with the company of his dogs to fight the giants.

This powerful, engrossing tale is beautifully written. It is unusual to find a Native American book
...more
Jewel
I wish this graphic novel was printed in color, otherwise I would have liked it more. most of the characters looked the same which made following the story difficult since all panels where printed in gray scale. plus, I was originally attracted by the water color cover; water colors are my favorite.
Mazohyst
2.5 stars = 50%

Nice art, although I'm so not used to the style. Sometimes it's hard to keep differentiate some of the characters. The story wasn't entirely amazing but interesting enough for me to keep reading (even though I vow to finish each and every book I start). Also, the cover is crazy pretty.
Joshua
This one really struck a cord with me. I've always loved Native American tales. There is a pace and style to them that always seems to catch me and reel me in. This one was no exception. The story is grand and I love that he lets the art tell the story at times. A must read in my opinion.
Mrs.Kerr ESL
Loved it - a billion times! The book was more adult than I thought it would be - there were bad words and pictures of naked people. Yes, I realize that you're all going to check out the book now (I turned it in today, so it's back in the library!). There are some very creative insults as well. But the story is a creation story at heart, and I loved hearing about White Buffalo Woman from a different viewpoint. I had not read very much about the Abenaki before, and I loved reading about them in a ...more
Emma
Not the best graphic novel I've read. The characters were hard to keep track of, both due to the bad POV changes and that I just didn't care about them. The art wasn't that great either. Wouldn't recommend this.
Georgia Meagher
Quick adventure! It was basically the Native American version of Attack on Titan... But the art style was interesting and I read it in one sitting.
Caitlin Persin
This book is a master piece and it tells such a beautiful story with little to very few words. I would highly recommend it.
Jeremy Hornik
Complex adventure story told well. Has the feel of legend or old tale. Frequently wordless.
Joy
The art was gorgeous, but I did not find the story compelling.
Darth
Interesting story. I was initially skeptical of its authenticity--was this pan-Indian, romanticized, only partly informed? The author's notes impressed me with his adherence to cultural origins and the values of his tradition. Some of the visual storytelling was a little opaque, and a more mainstream aesthetic would have emphasized certain parts of the drama; however, this carried the feeling of an elder telling a story: sometimes hard to follow, but maybe that's because you need to pay a little ...more
Edna
Loved this native-American story about two close cousins one of whom is cursed to be a slave to the bloodthirsty giants and the other who is entrusted with a weapon and destined to complete a quest to save mankind with his intelligent and loyal wolves. Mystic drawings beautifully illustrate the closeness (overlapping?) of man's relationship with the earth, the sky (the gods, and the animals.
Julian
This was a great story set in post-ice age North America; a marvellous folkloric tale involving spirits, ancient predators and giants pitted against the ingenuity, resilience and creativity of humans. Wonderfully written and illustrated. The author is an Abenaki steeped in the folklore, beliefs, tracking arts and other ancient skills of his people. An absolutely fascinating story.
Shannon
Beautiful graphic novel. Reminiscent of Broken Saints. The story is familiar - David and Goliath - but the presentation is wonderfully fresh. Sweeping scenic vistas, pages and pages without text or dialogue, immaculate pacing. Adult themes are suggested rather than extensively detailed. Adequate length and character development, and the story resolves. Perfection.
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Joseph Bruchac lives with his wife, Carol, in the Adirondack mountain foothills town of Greenfield Center, New York, in the same house where his maternal grandparents raised him. Much of his writing draws on that land and his Abenaki ancestry. Although his American Indian heritage is only one part of an ethnic background that includes Slovak and English blood, those Native roots are the ones by wh ...more
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