Tag Archives: myths

Leviathan by Zachary Harper

Review: The images are particularly clear and described in a straightforward way which both the young and old can enjoy. ‘Dense’ would be a way to describe this poem, for one cannot go into thinking it will be a quick read. In order to understand and appreciate it more, one must take their time. I found myself rereading certain stanzas which I enjoyed more than others, but overall for lovers of the genre it might be satisfying.

Poetry can be subjective in what one prefers, as I found myself thinking I might have used a different word order in few places, but I love the individuality of it.  Epic, heroic poetry of the kind not so often seen in the “mainstream” anymore or unless you belong to a specialized group. “Leviathan” is a different form of fantasy in this modern age, but no less vivid or important. It takes a different kind of talent to cut away the superfluous “fluff” found in some fantasy books and write in this form by driving straight to the main points and heart of a story.

Description by Mr. Harper: The book is a parable about the way modern man handles death, and centers on a Hero whose wife is killed by God, spurring him to find and confront God himself. A faery-tale at heart, I have had children read it and enjoy it immensely due to its fantastical nature, and adults read it and enjoy it due to the questions it asks. I would compare it more with the older faery-tales like Grimms and Andersen than any book published recently, and while I know poetical books are a dying breed, I hope to give the genre one last breath.

Blurb: The day Leviathan, Serpent of the Heavens, sent Death to collect Beauty’s soul, the vengeful Hero is swayed to confront God himself and demand payment for the wrong done. A parable of modern man’s response to the guilt and pain of death, Leviathan is an old story but retold.

Publisher: Zachary Harper

Publication Date: October 6, 2010

Buy Link: Smashwords

Source: Author

Author Bio:

Zachary Harper attended the University of Iowa, receiving degrees in Classical Chinese and Linguistics. Having studied Greek, Hebrew, and Chinese, he immersed himself in the faery tales and folk lore that fired the imaginations of the great early writers and served as the foundation of literature for thousands of years. Now he, too, draws from the well of the muses, writing parables and fables meant to both educate and entertain, hoping for nothing more than to inspire conversation on the ideas too complex to fit into anything other than simple stories.


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Filed under Poetry, Reviews

Riders on the Rez by Jan Lofton

“I had mixed feelings about this story. First, I must say that being Native American myself, I naturally look for a writer’s ability to present the characters and their actions and speech as authentic. And for the most part, I found it in this story. The relaxed, almost lacksidaisical nature many natives display amongst themselves is evident in the dialogue and scenes.

The writing style was somewhat choppy in places, but I understood this to be evidence of a young voice narrating the tale. There are plenty of terms and descriptions of skateboarding which I found a little distracting. For me they were unnecessary but they were within descriptive scenes displaying more about the character’s personality, attachments, and were at a key point in story development.

I work with Native American children and teens in the community I’m in and will certainly recommend they read “Riders on the Rez”. I would greatly like to know their impression of this somewhat “coming of age” story, and hopefully it may prompt them to write their own stories.

As a whole, I found “Riders on the Rez” to be a noteworthy story even though Native spirituality isn’t an easy concept for many people to understand, as most either over-complicate it or alternatively see it as primitive.  It simply is what it is.”


Blurb: When Billy Tsosie meets his relatives on the Navajo Reservation he does not quite know how to fit in. His Mom has never told him anything at all about about Dine traditions and he is sure that his older cousin Danny looks down on him because of it. But when Billy gets into a fight at the Kayenta Skateboard Park, it is Danny who comes to his rescue.

Extended Description: Young skateboarder Billie Tsosie is quick to take on kids who tease him about his Native American heritage, and equally quick to jump into a fight with the kid who kicks his little cousin, Shawna.

When his mother takes him to visit the Navajo reservation and he interacts with his “rellies” for the first time in his short life, he finds out that he has a heritage to be proud of. Through the teaching of his older cousins, his uncles, and Spiderwoman, he comes to understand the meaning of hozho, the Navajo term for walking in consciousness and beauty.

Published: Jan. 02, 2011
Category: Fiction » Children’s Books » Fiction
Words: 6173 (approximate)
Language: English

Visit Smashwords to download your copy.

Source: Author

2 Comments

Filed under Child/YA Fiction, Short Story