The Wondrous Journeys of Peter and Wapahoo

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978-1-4349-9797-5
The Wondrous Journeys of Peter and Wapahoo

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The Wondrous Journeys of Peter and Wapahoo
by Traci K. O'Reilly

The year is 1832. Wapahoo is a full-blooded Yurok Indian from the North. He is about fifteen years of age. He has been given a test for courage by Chief Ha-go-I-neigh to ride among the warriors along the trail of the elk to kill a bull elk to prove him a man. Wapahoo fails the test, and he is then sent on his second quest: to kill a bobcat, stay overnight with the bobcats spirit, and then travel back home through the enemy territory of the Tolowa.

Wapahoo narrowly passes the second quest and during his night alone with the bobcats spirit, he is attacked first by a lone older wolf and then a black bear. Wapahoo offers his new friend bear meat as a thank-you for bringing him good luck.

About the Author

I have always loved the Native Americans, and I have always associated them with the Old West, a time of intrigue, adventure, and freedom, a much simpler way of life. I have always considered myself to be born in the wrong era.

At night when my children were to settle down and go to sleep, I would rub their backs. They would ask me to tell stories about my childhood experiences. I soon ran out of experiences, so I concocted the story of Peter and Wapahoo. Peter is based on my twelve-year-old boy, Colton, who is rambunctious and adventurous. Wapahoo is based on Spencer, my fifteen-year-old. He is more on the quiet side. My two boys have a strong bond between them, but at times it is surely tested.

After the third day of the story of Wapahoo and Peter, the boys began to ask if I had written any more and could they hear it that night. Spencer stated quite seriously, Mom, you should be a writer. Hence the idea was born.

(2010, paperback, 48 pages)