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Naya Nuki: Shoshone Girl Who Ran (Amazing Indian Children)

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  1,436 Ratings  ·  163 Reviews
After being taken prisoner by an enemy tribe, a Shoshoni girl escapes and makes a thousand-mile journey through the wilderness in search of her own people.
Paperback, 175 pages
Published April 1st 2000 by Grandview Pub. Co. (first published 1983)
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In the fourth grade my elementary school had Kenneth Thomasma come to our school to do a talk on his new book: Naya Nuki. I remember being enthralled by his speech (I was also incredibly into Native Americans at the time) and my sweet mother must've given me money to buy the book that day, because my copy is signed by the author and it says "To Corinne 3/25/87". I bet I read it a half dozen times while in elementary school.

I was digging through my box of old books recently and when I found my co
My absolute favorite book in 4th grade. I must have checked it out from the library at least fifteen times, and the result of this is that I still remember the plot of the story almost perfectly.

Eleven-year-old Naya Nuki and her friend Sacajawea (10-year-old Madeline: OMG LIKE THE REAL PERSON!) get kidnapped by an enemy tribe and sold into slavery. Naya decides that's not cool, and after her friend gets sold to French traders she starts making plans to blow that popsicle stand and find her trib
May 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: when-i-was-a-kid
I had this book packed away and I opened the cover and found my first book review!! I wrote "I got this book on 6-25-93. I am 11 1/2 years old and I read this book in 5 days and it is one of my favorite books. This book took place in some of Yellowstone."

I haven't re-read this book as an adult yet but I have to give it 5 stars based on my review at 11 years old. :) I got this book on one of our vacations to Yellowstone National Park.
Jun 24, 2009 rated it liked it
I forgot all about this book! Kenneth Thomasma came to my school in the second grade with a giant buffalo skin. When he asked for volunteers to come get wrapped up in it, somehow I ended up on stage. He gave me an autographed copy for my troubles; wouldn't you know it, but I can't remember what he wrote. Years later, I took it to show & tell at my Catholic middle school (note the emphasis) and someone stole it. Now every time a copy comes my way at work, I check the inside to see if it's min ...more
La Petite Américaine
Aug 23, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone!
HAHAH I can't believe this book is on here. This has been one of my favorite books since kindergarten. Somehow I always manage to find a copy every couple of years and reread it. It's a children's book, and it rocks.

Native American wars, slavery, escape, and giant bears totally rule. :)
Sep 30, 2008 rated it really liked it
Even though I read this 20+ years ago, the story is still vivid in my mind. Loved it.
Oct 22, 2016 rated it liked it
Recommended to Lisa by: Sonlight Homeschool Curriculum
Based on a true story, Naya Nuki and Sacajawea, two young Shoshoni girls, are taken captive and enslaved in 1801 by a band of Minnetare Indians. Naya Nuki escapes and after many days, during which she is stalked by a grizzly bear, becomes gravely ill, and endures harsh winter weather, she finds her way back to her family and tribe in Montana. Sacajawea, in the meantime, is sold to a a white man and eventually ends up married to a French man and helps lead Lewis and Clark on their famous expediti ...more
Aug 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This might be the story of the bravest woman ever. Toward the end I started checking google maps to see where she was and found myself in awe of her route. I highly recommend this for anyone who wants to hear how one 11 year old girl found her way back across North Dakota and Montana to her people.
Sep 16, 2017 rated it liked it
Here's the review I wrote when I was 10 years old:
"3 1/2 Stars. Naya Nuki was only eleven when she was taken captive by a rival indian tribe. Finally, the opportunity to run away came. For a month her journey presents courage, danger, and survival skills."
I'm pretty sure that I copied most of the words from the back of the book, but not too bad! :)
May 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
My kids loved this historical fiction novel! I found the writing style too simple and redundant, but the story is absolutely fascinating! Especially the epilogue with the historical account from lewis and clark.
Aug 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Amazing story, highly recommended.
May 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Mar 09, 2017 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
From the moment Naya Nuki and her friend Sacajawea were captured by warriors of an enemy tribe, Naya Nuki knew she would escape. They were forced to march over 1000 miles to the home of the warriors, and she knew that escape during the march wasn't feasible. But she carefully noted landmarks, so she would be able to find her way back.

Naya Nuki and the others captured were forced to be slaves. The woman Naya Nuki was assigned to beat her, but Naya Nuki worked very hard, and soon the woman ceased
Jan 05, 2017 added it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing
After several trips to America and visiting some native tribes and learning a little about them, American History never fails to captivate me. When Baker Books sent me Naya Nuki I knew I had to read it.

The story about Naya Nuki who gets captured at 11 years of age by the Minnetare tribe and escapes and travels over 1000 miles back to her Shoshoni tribe is stunning. I think it’s safe to say that no 11 year old could do something like this.

The story pulled me in and I couldn’t put the book down. T
Feb 06, 2008 rated it really liked it
I read this book quite a while ago and remember enjoying it. For quite a while now, I've been meaning to read another Kenneth Thomasma novel. He lives relatively close to where I live....I live in Ketchum, Idaho and he lives in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Some of the same Indian tribes roamed and lived near both our locations.
In this book the main character, Naya Nuki is a member of the Shoshoni Indian tribe. She is taken captive along with the infamous Sacajawea and is forced to walk 1000 miles fr
Mar 25, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
Read this with my kids for our neighborhood little girls' book club. My kids (ages 5 & 7) really enjoyed it. Even my 2 year old listened to part...and was fascinated by the bear that Naya has to climb a tree to escape. It was an interesting story. I was disappointed, however, that the author did not include any author's note to tell what was fact and what was fiction, how he did his research, etc. As I was looking for more info online (and there wasn't much aside from reviews of this book),o ...more
Philippe Shelton
Jun 07, 2016 rated it liked it
Naya nuki is about and is an Indian who got captured. The book goes through to tell us about how to she survived the wilderness to return to here home in the mountain.

Naya Nuki was walking along a familiar trail with here friend when she was attacked. She hid under a log, but a dog sniffed here out. She was "dragged" thousands of miles to were here captures homes were located. There she was sold to an old woman who couldn't see very well. Naya Nuki took advantage to this defect, she starting g
Ken Thomasma used to come to my elementary school every year and do the most amazing assembly ever. Not only was he kind and supportive of kid writers and readers, but he was a treasure trove of information about Native Americans, and he'd do his presentation in full storytelling voice. He also brought visual aids like jewelry, buffalo robes, and photographs. This was my favorite of his books. Based on the real story of a young girl who walked back to her tribe in winter after being kidnapped, h ...more
Feb 22, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Heather by: myself
Naya Nuki is a young girl of the Shoshone tribe. Her best friend is Sacagawea. Their families are hunting on the buffalo grounds when they are savagely attacked. The two girls are taken prisoner by the attacking tribe. They are led a thousand miles from their home to be slaves for the other tribe. Naya Nuki never gives up her hope of escape and return to her homeland.

This book is exciting, adventurous, and historically interesting. Children love this book. It allows you to discuss foreshadowing
Sep 13, 2014 rated it liked it
I read this book because it is assigned reading for college masters program of education. the purpose of the assignment is to understand how naya nuki learns throughout her experience. once i got past the very elementary level of wording and description (which is understandable. its a book for elementary kids), I found that the story caught my attention and I was able to read it all in one sitting. i was also excited to read the link to sacajawea at the end.
naya nuki learned by using all of her
Malea Potter
Feb 12, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: february
This book was a fun adventure that jumps into the middle of the story right off the bat. I enjoyed reading this story and i think that children would really enjoy it too. The book kept me reader just to see what king of roadblocks she would run into next. Even though it is a true story, I was still wondering if she would make it home safely or if she would get hurt. I couldn't help thinking how brave she was to travel so far, by herself in about a month's time. I also thought it was nice that th ...more
Feb 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I, like many people, have read many stories involving adventure. But never have I come across an adventure where I felt like I was making sure there was no danger around me along with Naya Nuki. Seriously, I was afraid that wolves, bears, or enemy braves would suddenly show up just when I think it's safe. I feel that this story deserves to have a game designed based on it (board game or video game). This story also happened to be a true story. I was wondering why I didn't read this story when I ...more
Ashlyn Phillips
I really liked this story. I remember reading this in grade school and I loved I then also. I was always fascinated by Indian American people and this story really shocked me. I am astounded at the strength of this young girl and I always wanted to be that strong in my own way. I never could believe that this was true, and I think it is kind of sad that it is. It is strange that these type of stories happen in all cultures and to all people. The point is to be brave through we may not literally ...more
Feb 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Synopsis: "After being taken prisoner by an enemy tribe, a Shoshoni girl escapes and makes a thousand-mile journey through the wilderness in search of her own people."

My Review: I read this book years ago and really enjoyed it and all of Thomasma's books, he creates a thrilling story that you can really immerse yourself into. Upon re-reading it now, years later, there were a couple little tiny issues that bothered me, some things were repeated several times that didn't need to be repeated. That
Sep 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was kind of a short book but it was packed with tons of adventure. It is about a young Native American girl named Naya Nuki. She gets captured by a tribe & plans for her escape. The distance is forty days away form her home in the mountains. She runs into many challanges on her journey from the dry prairie to he beautiful mountain home. She is faced with death a couple times. At the end of the book she finds her home & lives happily, she is known as the girl who ran...
I would r
Feb 11, 2014 rated it liked it
This was an interesting story about a young girls strength; I know when I was eleven I cried when I was left at Walmart, forget being abducted and walking across a few states in enemy territory. One thing I found a bit difficult to get through was the monotony of her journey which accounted for approximately 100 pages of the book. I understood that was a majour part of the story line, but I would have liked to hear more about her reunion with her people (which only filled one page at the end) an ...more
Feb 18, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Christy - for Emily and Katie
I LOVED this book as a girl! I still like to go back and read it for a quick adventure/survival read. I guess I really like survival stories, especially a true one like this! We all know who Sacajawea is, but did you know she was abducted with her best friend by an enemy tribe and then marched over 1000 miles and sold as slaves to another tribe? Sacajawea grew accustomed to her new home, and eventually married the French fur trader Charbonneau, but her friend decided in the beginning of that lon ...more
Janessa Brown
Ah, reminiscing about middle school was what I did throughout this book. I used to imagine myself as a little indian girl. Who am I kidding, I still imagine myself as a little indian girl! These books were where I got the bulk of my survival skill knowledge when I was younger, and they still impress me with their content. I love how Kenneth Thomasma takes every opportunity to teach about survival techniques, the landscape, and the historical relevancy. While not the most attention grasping novel ...more
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Kenneth Thomasma is a professional storyteller and writing workshop leader who lives in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
More about Kenneth Thomasma...

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