In a time before history, in a harsh and beautiful land near the top of the world, womanhood comes cruelly and suddenly to beautiful, young Chagak Surviving the brutal massacre of her tribe, she sets out across the icy waters off Ameria s northwest coast on an astonishing odyssey that will reveal to Chagak powerful secrets of the earth and sky and the mysteries of love and loss


10 thoughts on “Mother Earth Father Sky

  1. Lynn Davidson Lynn Davidson says:

    Mother Earth Father Sky is the first book in a trilogy that takes us into the lives of an ancient North American people in Alaska If that sounds boring, don t be fooled.To be honest, I hardly know what to say about this book At the writing of this review first posted on my blog , having just finished reading it I m barely back to the here and now, and the story of Chagak is still fresh in my mind To say that Sue Harrison wrote an amazing prehistoric fiction novel scarcely describes what she Mother Earth Father Sky is the first book in a trilogy that takes us into the lives of an ancient North American people in Alaska If that sounds boring, don t be fooled.To be honest, I hardly know what to say about this book At the writing of this review first posted on my blog , having just finished reading it I m barely back to the here and now, and the story of Chagak is still fresh in my mind To say that Sue Harrison wrote an amazing prehistoric fiction novel scarcely describes what she masterfully accomplished Over the course of nine years she studied, researched and lived in her creative mind the tale of a long ago culture in Alaska, focusing on one Aleut woman s struggle to survive and overcome a very harsh reality That woman, Chagak, lived in a primitive time consisting of warrior tribes, legends, crude customs, myths, and magic, but also love, family ties, and community The author made it all come alive through the power of the written word in a very easy to read style I was held from the beginning of this book to its last page left wanting to readabout the people I had come to know.This book is not newly released but was published in 1990 I was fortunate to be gifted a copy and I m so glad to have received it If you come across Mother Earth Father Sky and you are not offended by the cruel reality and graphic descriptions of the belief system of prehistoric man, then do grab the opportunity to read this book


  2. Candi Candi says:

    Set in 7056 BC, this was a fascinating look at the prehistoric inhabitants of the Aleutian Islands I learned quite a bit about their customs, beliefs and hardships, which is what I liked most about this book I loved reading about the survival skills and the respect the people had towards nature and all its gifts I admired the young teenage girl, Chagak, who lost her entire family during a massacre of her village at the beginning of the book She showed such strength and determination The old Set in 7056 BC, this was a fascinating look at the prehistoric inhabitants of the Aleutian Islands I learned quite a bit about their customs, beliefs and hardships, which is what I liked most about this book I loved reading about the survival skills and the respect the people had towards nature and all its gifts I admired the young teenage girl, Chagak, who lost her entire family during a massacre of her village at the beginning of the book She showed such strength and determination The old man, Shuganan, was an interesting character, with his spiritual and mystical aura He was a man of peace, rather than violence, and his abundance of wisdom helped Chagak grow evenas a woman I recommend this book to anyone interested in historical fiction and Native American culture 3.5 stars rounded to 4 stars


  3. Alexis Alexis says:

    This is the first book in one of my most favorite series in the world And the first time I truly fell in love with a book I read this when I was a teenager and I still often go back to reread it In fact, this may be my favorite story the trilogy as a whole I was fortunate to have a good boyfriend who bought me the three hardcovers signed by the author especially for my birthday Chagak, the main character, lives in a world about 9000 years ago in the frigid Aleutian islands off the coast o This is the first book in one of my most favorite series in the world And the first time I truly fell in love with a book I read this when I was a teenager and I still often go back to reread it In fact, this may be my favorite story the trilogy as a whole I was fortunate to have a good boyfriend who bought me the three hardcovers signed by the author especially for my birthday Chagak, the main character, lives in a world about 9000 years ago in the frigid Aleutian islands off the coast of Alaska The story is based on her fictional life set in a very real primitive culture Her people survive through harsh winters, rogue waves, volcanic activity, tribal fighting and any other hazard imaginable It is an unusual experience to have this culture so richly painted and to see life through this young woman s eyes She is a quiet heroine she is not a warrior princess or doesn t possess any special powers she is just a strong young woman who adapts to her difficult circumstances and not only survives, but thrives, growing from a girl to a woman The writing is good that you have vivid images of the setting in your head, you can feel the softness of the clothing, and almost taste the prepared foods You get a very real sense of the culture without judging them at the same time The story makes you want to knowof this time and this area And I definitely recommend finishing this trilogy as it only gets better


  4. Sonja Arlow Sonja Arlow says:

    3 1 2 starsThis is a story of Chagak, a young woman who at the brink of womanhood, loses her entire tribe to a group of killers known as the Short Ones Along with her infant brother she tries to find a way to survive Woman are not hunters in this civilization, their spirit is not strong enough, so when Chagak lands on a beach that belongs to an old man called Shuganan, her hopes of survival increases.Shuganan is an outcast, a man with the power of capturing spirits in little figurines and is 3 1 2 starsThis is a story of Chagak, a young woman who at the brink of womanhood, loses her entire tribe to a group of killers known as the Short Ones Along with her infant brother she tries to find a way to survive Woman are not hunters in this civilization, their spirit is not strong enough, so when Chagak lands on a beach that belongs to an old man called Shuganan, her hopes of survival increases.Shuganan is an outcast, a man with the power of capturing spirits in little figurines and is clearly in need of companionship and family.Chagak fills the role of surrogate granddaughter admirably but their lives are harsh and difficult and full of tragedy The descriptions of hunting, housing and honouring spirits formed a central part of the story however I would have liked to understand the dynamics and politics between the different tribes better Perhaps that will be elaborated on in the sequel Its impossible not to compare this to The Clan of the Cave Bear as both are novels are set in prehistoric time I think Clan is a faster paced and slightlyinteresting in its elaborative details however Chagak was portrayed in ahonest light than Ayla from The Clan of the Cave Bear who always seemed to magically know how to do anything I don t want to give away too much information, but the book is worth the read if you have an interest in prehistoric novels PS My advice is to listen to it on audio rather than reading the printed version


  5. Teri Teri says:

    I read this book about 15 years ago and loved it The author spent 4 years researching the Aleut people and then put together a fabulous trilogy Her writing is excellent visual, and I fell right into the book I had trouble finding the books, but Sue Harrison has a website now so you can order directly from her I have just finished reading, and it was as good as I remembered.


  6. Iset Iset says:

    A decent stone age novel, at last I have to say I really rather enjoyed this one It opened strongly, grabbing onto my interest, and it kept a hold of it by addingtwists and obstacles that got me desperately rooting for the protagonist, Chagak, and wanting to find out the resolution The descriptions are vivid without being overly long and in this respect Mother Earth Father Sky is, I would say, better than Clan of the Cave Bear Speaking of Clan of the Cave Bear, I think the two books A decent stone age novel, at last I have to say I really rather enjoyed this one It opened strongly, grabbing onto my interest, and it kept a hold of it by addingtwists and obstacles that got me desperately rooting for the protagonist, Chagak, and wanting to find out the resolution The descriptions are vivid without being overly long and in this respect Mother Earth Father Sky is, I would say, better than Clan of the Cave Bear Speaking of Clan of the Cave Bear, I think the two books are definitely comparable in quality and when I say that I refer only to the first book, not the later book s in Jean Auel s series Both feature compelling plots with plenty of obstacles to overcome, although this book may have the edge in beingconcisely expressed.However, that said, I didn t think Mother Earth Father Sky was amazing In the final third of the book the protagonists have overcome the most pressing obstacles in their path, and it s an easier ride to the end likewise I had less reason to worry about what was happening There was never any doubt in my mind that view spoiler Chagak s tribes would overcome the evil tribe, or that both she and Kayugh would overcome their mutual sorrows to find love hide spoiler As a result, I admit I switched off a bit and found myself skimming a little at the end Still, I m pleased at last to have found a stone age novel that isn t dry as dust, filled with purple prose, or containing New Age pseudoscience it s been a long time of searching.7 out of 10


  7. Janie Janie says:

    I won t summarize this book since others have written some very good synopses already I ll just talk about what grabbed me.Harrison s rich prose describes a civilization she has obviously researched very carefully I was caught up right away in the lives of a Native American tribe and enjoying the read when BANG the end of the first chapter one stuns you as though someone swung a whalebone club over your head From then on, the tension never lets up as the main character Chagak struggles to su I won t summarize this book since others have written some very good synopses already I ll just talk about what grabbed me.Harrison s rich prose describes a civilization she has obviously researched very carefully I was caught up right away in the lives of a Native American tribe and enjoying the read when BANG the end of the first chapter one stuns you as though someone swung a whalebone club over your head From then on, the tension never lets up as the main character Chagak struggles to survive first for her brother, then for the old man who becomes her surrogate grandfather, then for her own child.This book is not only a pleasure to read, it s an education I haven t studied anthropology much, or the lives of the Pacific NW tribes who live in the Aleutian islands This book brings home the beauty and dangers of the islands Chagak and her people are amazingly resourceful, making use of every plant and animal available to them They are always keenly aware that the sea and wind can turn on them in a moment, robbing them of their homes and lives By the end of the book, I felt so much respect for these early people, for their ingenuity and self sufficiency, their knowledge of nature


  8. Raegan Raegan says:

    Being a fantasy lover, I chose this book to take a break from my usual genre I remembered liking Island of the Blue Dolphins and Sweetgrass as a child so I thought I would like this one Though, my interest was low in the beginning, I m so glad I stuck with it Nearing the final pages, I can t put it down I will go on to the next book If you re looking for a change, I highly recommend the step out of your comfort zone to Chagak s world Enjoy


  9. Erin Erin says:

    Find this and other reviews at are for a hard sell for me I don t know why, but they are difficult for me to get into so when I manage to find one that holds my interest, I tend to take notice which brings me to Mother Earth Father Sky by Sue Harrison Like Song of the River, this piece is character heavy, but what is so remarkable is how distinct, well rounded and realistic each cast member feels I can t imagine what goes into painting the Find this and other reviews at are for a hard sell for me I don t know why, but they are difficult for me to get into so when I manage to find one that holds my interest, I tend to take notice which brings me to Mother Earth Father Sky by Sue Harrison Like Song of the River, this piece is character heavy, but what is so remarkable is how distinct, well rounded and realistic each cast member feels I can t imagine what goes into painting the motivations, personality and emotional struggles of so characters so vividly, but Harrison s effort certainly isn t wasted In point of fact, I feel the authentic quality of her cast is what makes not just this piece, but her entire body of work so exceptional Speaking of relatable characters, I should probably mention my attraction to Chagak Her path is a difficult one, but as a woman who had to overcome sexual abuse, I really admire Harrison for creating a character that doesn t allow the experience to define her life I ve seen authors attempt this story line before, but can honestly say few have pulled it off as well Strong characterization isn t the only aspect of Harrison s work worth mentioning Her books are long, but they are also overflowing with cultural history I might be going out on a limb, but I think it safe to say Harrison puts as much into her research as she does developing her plot lines and her cast Her understanding and respect for the indigenous people of North America emanates from every page, making her work as intriguing as it is entertaining All told, Mother Earth Father Sky is a beautiful story of perseverance and strength amidst incredible hardship, as notable for its content as its flawless presentation


  10. Awallens Awallens says:

    In a time before history, in a harsh and beautiful land near the top of the world, womanhood comes cruelly and suddenly to beautiful, young Chagak Survivingthe brutal massacre of her tribe, she sets out across the icy waters off Ameria s northwest coast on an astonishing odyssey that will reveal to Chagak powerfulsecrets of the earth and sky and the mysteries of love and loss.At first I compared this book to the Clan of the Cave Bear series, but with arealistic heroine But those compa In a time before history, in a harsh and beautiful land near the top of the world, womanhood comes cruelly and suddenly to beautiful, young Chagak Survivingthe brutal massacre of her tribe, she sets out across the icy waters off Ameria s northwest coast on an astonishing odyssey that will reveal to Chagak powerfulsecrets of the earth and sky and the mysteries of love and loss.At first I compared this book to the Clan of the Cave Bear series, but with arealistic heroine But those comparisons began to fade in my mind as I read, and I am greatful they did this is a refreshing look at the life of a prehistoric troop of people and how they were ordinary in many ways Definitely recommended for historical fiction nuts like myself