In prehistoric Alaska, an Aleut girl, unwanted and abused, changes the destiny of her tribeGray Bird wanted only sons His daughter, Kiin, would have been killed at birth to make way for a male heir if not for the tribal chief, Kayugh, who claimed the infant as a future wife for one of his two young sons Sixteen years later, Kiin is caught between the two brothers one to whom she is promised, the other whom she desires But the evil spawned by her own family takes her far from her people to a place where savage cruelties, love, and fate will strengthen and change her, and lead her to her ultimate destiny


10 thoughts on “My Sister the Moon

  1. Bren Bren says:

    A man is what he himself does, what he thinks, what he learns, his own skills Sue Harrison, My Sister the Moon3.5 stars.I adore books on Indian History and culture This one is part of a series but I read it as a stand alone.To be honest..I wasn t crazy about it I was deeply touched and thought the writing was terrific But it was a bit different then I d thought it would be although that is on me for not reading the first book in the series.My Sister the Moon is told during Prehistoric ti A man is what he himself does, what he thinks, what he learns, his own skills Sue Harrison, My Sister the Moon3.5 stars.I adore books on Indian History and culture This one is part of a series but I read it as a stand alone.To be honest..I wasn t crazy about it I was deeply touched and thought the writing was terrific But it was a bit different then I d thought it would be although that is on me for not reading the first book in the series.My Sister the Moon is told during Prehistoric times and my main positive is reading about how people lived then And the main character,.Kiin is a sassy and strong female and I both deeply liked and respected her and was interested in her story.But the book is just so painful at times Her story is not a happy one In fact, this is one of those books where the bad things just keep piling on It does not let up through the whole book Kiin is treated terribly by many of the men in her life, especially and including family members What I did not like was all the violence..so much of it..through the story Kiin must do a great deal of outwitting of her enemies I read much Historical Fiction and in many of the books I read there is tragedy And darkness In this bookand this is not really a spoiler as it happens early on..Kiin is kidnapped and horribly assaulted by a family member I should say this aspects of this book could be a trigger Misogyny, abuse..it is alot.I cannot say I was not deeply touched by the story Still it was a tough one to read as bad thing after bad thing happens I did love Kiin though Her strength and resilience was inspiring and I wanted to see where her story would go.SPOILERS The book ended on a sort of abstract note I did not love but I think there arebooks to follow Honestly, I doubt I will go on in the series While I did not dislike My Sister the Moon, it is not a book I fell in love with although I liked getting to know this strong and clever woman.Recommended to Historical Fiction lovers


  2. Janie Janie says:

    Let me start by saying that Native American prehistory is not one of my interests The Ivory Carver Trilogy, by Sue Harrison, is set in pre historic Alaska, in the Aleutian Islands They are proof positive that a good story trumps a reader s preference for setting After reading Mother Earth, Father Sky, the first book of the series read my review there was no question that I had to move on to My Sister the Moon.The novel centers on sixteen year old Kiin, who begins life without a name becau Let me start by saying that Native American prehistory is not one of my interests The Ivory Carver Trilogy, by Sue Harrison, is set in pre historic Alaska, in the Aleutian Islands They are proof positive that a good story trumps a reader s preference for setting After reading Mother Earth, Father Sky, the first book of the series read my review there was no question that I had to move on to My Sister the Moon.The novel centers on sixteen year old Kiin, who begins life without a name because she was born without a soul, and thus undeserving of a name Her life is a litany of domestic abuse her father Gray Bird beats her for any actual or imagined shortcoming, and when traders come to the village, Gray Bird always tries to sell them a night with his daughter Her younger brother Qakan is equally rough on her Her mother, frightened into submission, can t protect her.Kiin s life changes when she is made wife to Amgigh, son of Kayugh the village chief, who made a promise to Gray Bird when Kiin was a baby, that Kiin would be wife to one of his sons It was a promise made to prevent Gray Bird from killing this unwanted daughter.Kayugh s household is happy and full of kindness Kiin s young husband is good to her She tells herself she is lucky to have a husband at all, but she can t help but wish for a different husband Kiin is in love with Amgigh s brother Samiq, and he with her But Samiq s destiny also has been decided he is to move to the village where his maternal grandfather lives and learn how to become a Whale Hunter.Yet even as a member of the chief s family, Kiin is not safe Hoping to become a trader, her brother Qakan steals furs and tools from the village to begin his career Before he paddles away, he kidnaps Kiin if he can take her far enough, he might be able to trade her to a man who doesn t know her reputation that Kiin has no soul.At the start of the book, Kiin is archetype of an abused woman, a victim of domestic violence She accepts that she deserves only ill treatment But her inner voice grows stronger as her will to survive asserts itself during the voyage with her brother When she realizes she is pregnant, it becomes evenimperative for her to live Yes, there is a love triangle in the novel, but for me the most interesting journey is Kiin s escape, physically and emotionally, away from domestic violence Her mental state and low self esteem give way to a cautious confidence in her carving skills and her worth as a woman It s not an easy story to read, but so compelling and immersive you have to keep reading It s a highly disturbing yet absorbing journey, aided by well developed characters and competent prose that puts you right in the Arctic landscape Harrison s voice is straightforward, her sentences simple in structure This may be for the sake of younger readers see note below , but I found her prose strong and suited to the story s setting Even though Kiin suffers at the hands of cruel men, you never forget the impersonal cruelty of the Arctic, its dangerous emptiness, icy waters, and sudden shifts of weather Harrison s writing makes you shiver with the cold winds and salt spray, the harshness of the land, the precariousness of life You feel chilled, your skin too thin NOTE I was surprised to find reviews which categorized the series as Young Adult books, especially My Sister the Moon In the Author s Notes, Harrison says she borrowed the incest storyline from an Aleut sea otter legend What I Learned About Writing from Reading This BookWhen I read fiction, I always hope for an experience that pulls me in to the book Theunfamiliar the setting, thereaders need to learn about the culture, everyday objects, and events One of the perennial challenges of historical fiction is how to draw readers into an unfamiliar time and place without thrusting information into their faces We need to understand what s appropriate to the time and place, otherwise we won t appreciate the story s conflicts but we don t want to get yanked out of the story to learn There s nothingannoying than when a story veers off into a lecture about objects, clothing, or traditions and beliefs.How can a writer convey how ancient tools worked or how a particular society was structured without turning paragraphs into social studies lessons Harrison never hands us a heavy, awkward chunk of information Instead, she adds in the details of her world here and there, woven into her characters actions and dialogue so that when we read descriptions, they are natural and in context We see things through the eyes of her characters as they think and talk She trusts her readers intelligence to know that when a hunter goes paddling out to sea in an ikyak, he is in a boat we don t need an immediate detailed description about how it s made from skins stretched over a wooden frame That can come later Let s look at clothing, a detail so essential to the mind s eye of a readerThe worst example I ever came across was a novel where each character walked into a scene accompanied by a long paragraph describing his her appearance Every time Every costume change.This isn t it, but it s pretty close Lulu was five foot eight, with black hair in a blunt bob down to her shoulders She had pale skin, a Grecian nose and wide set blue eyes Her pouty lips were outlined in crimson and filled in with Chanel Power Red gloss She wore black leather pants , a white silk blouse, black leather gloves and a black leather motorcycle jacket which fit tightly to her slim yet curvaceous figure She stood on high heeled black boots with silver spurs that made her long legs look evenenticing A bracelet of heavy, solid platinum You get the idea I didn t read the past the first chapter In the world of My Sister the Moon, there is no wool, cloth has yet to be invented, and it s a climate for which clothing is not optional People used furs and skins to fashion garments and boots As readers, our frame of reference barely exists for this Yet it s essential for the novel to give us an appreciation of the ingenuity of this prehistoric culture it gives usrespect for them, elevates them in our mind from primitive tribal folk to characters we can care about I found Harrison s descriptions of clothing endlessly fascinating as she explained these early people s resourceful use of materials.For example, a suk is a calf length hoodless parka with a collar, reversible so that it could be worn with the feathers or fur on the inside for warmth Our first detailed description of such a garment comes fairly early in the book, when Chagak gifts one to her daughter in law Kiin It s the most beautiful thing Kiin has ever owned so it s natural for her to admire and enumerate its features banded at the bottom with a ruff of white cormorant rump feathers hung with shell beads The sleeves were cuffed with tufts of brown eider feathers and on the outside of the collar rim Chagak had sewn a strip of pale ribbon seal fur, trimmed into a pattern of ripples, a blessing asked from the sea Kiin tries it on, and it fits perfectly, the sleeves ended just above her fingertips and the bottom edge fell below her knees There is nothing contrived when a suk is introduced in this way And now we know what one looks like Or, there is the chigadix, a waterproof garment sewn from whale tongue skin or sea lion esophagus But how are the seams made waterproof Harrison explains this in a scene where Samiq oils his garment with seal fat to keep water out of the seams While he cares for his clothing, he muses how men can repair a chigadix but not make it watertight the way his mother and Kiin can His mind wanders to a memory of Kiin working on a chigadix a double seam, sewn one way, then turned and sewn back another Informative Natural Unobtrusive to the story When I write about objects, clothing, or traditions and beliefs, I ll try to blend the descriptions into dialog, thoughts, or the action rather than write about them as standalone descriptions No social studies lessons.Sue was gracious enough to let me interview her read here


  3. Amanda Amanda says:

    My favorite in the series with MOTHER EARTH, FATHER SKY and MY SISTER THE MOONI bought it at a thrift store it was way better than I thougth it would be


  4. E. Hughes E. Hughes says:

    If I had to name a favorite book, I would name My Sister the Moon My Sister the Moon is the second installment in a trilogy beginning with Mother Earth, Father Sky, and ending with Brother Wind I first read it, my eyes glued to every page when I was 17 years old, sometimes in the early 90s I eventually read the book again with adult eyes a couple of years ago and loved it even .My Sister the Moon is an adventurous story filled with heartbreak, adventure and triumph It tells the story of If I had to name a favorite book, I would name My Sister the Moon My Sister the Moon is the second installment in a trilogy beginning with Mother Earth, Father Sky, and ending with Brother Wind I first read it, my eyes glued to every page when I was 17 years old, sometimes in the early 90s I eventually read the book again with adult eyes a couple of years ago and loved it even .My Sister the Moon is an adventurous story filled with heartbreak, adventure and triumph It tells the story of a girl with no name, born to a ruthless father who hates her for stealing the first born right from his only son, who believes he s weak and fat because his sister s greedy soul pushed ahead of him and was born first Her father punishes her by refusing to name her, which according to tribal beliefs, a person without a name does not have a soul.She is in love with the son of the tribe s chief, Samiq, but destined to marry his brother Amigagh sp Her life takes a hairy turn when an evil plot steals her away from the village she loves, and a pair of psychic twins spin an unworldly prophecy about her fate, leading to an epic adventure and a fight for the man she loves, and the man she has been chosen to marry


  5. Ray Perreault Ray Perreault says:

    I enjoyed this book It was well written and the character were well developed I like historical fiction and this painted an exciting picture of what life would have like along the Aleutian Islands I ve been to a number of museums in the Northwest and this story helped to bring life to what I saw.I suggest this book strongly to anyone that enjoys this type of novel.


  6. Kristin Kristin says:

    This is the second book in Harrison s Ivory Carver series, and I liked it about as much as I liked the first one, which was quite a lot This one follows the story of Kiin, the much abused daughter of the evil Gray Bird from the first book Reviled by her father for not being male yet saved from death by the kindness of Kayugh, husband of Chagak, who promises his son Amgigh as husband for Kiin Chagak is a secondary character in this book, but I grew to love the character of Kiin, and her triump This is the second book in Harrison s Ivory Carver series, and I liked it about as much as I liked the first one, which was quite a lot This one follows the story of Kiin, the much abused daughter of the evil Gray Bird from the first book Reviled by her father for not being male yet saved from death by the kindness of Kayugh, husband of Chagak, who promises his son Amgigh as husband for Kiin Chagak is a secondary character in this book, but I grew to love the character of Kiin, and her triumph over adversity I will definitely be reading the third book soon


  7. Mindy Mindy says:

    This is the continuation of Mother Earth Father Sky and kinda follows into the story with the main characters children Also the main character is a woman They really went through a lot It makes you appreciate being born here and now when women are of value and don t have to fight for their life.


  8. Elly Harding Elly Harding says:

    graphic but somehow i just had to know what was going to happenso i finished it it s a nice story and a setting uncommon to most books


  9. Mawgojzeta Mawgojzeta says:

    The second book in the Ivory Carver Trilogy and holds up quite well.


  10. Kendra Kendra says:

    I just read My Sister the Moon for the second time in 25 years I didn t remember the details of the story so I enjoyed the book as if it were a first time read The 2nd book in the Ivory Carver Series isn t as quick a read as Mother Earth Father Sky but the story is engaging and the characters are well developed The landscape of the ancient Alaskan Aleutian Chain is almost a character itself The reason I can t love this book is because of the extreme heartache and sadness surrounding the main I just read My Sister the Moon for the second time in 25 years I didn t remember the details of the story so I enjoyed the book as if it were a first time read The 2nd book in the Ivory Carver Series isn t as quick a read as Mother Earth Father Sky but the story is engaging and the characters are well developed The landscape of the ancient Alaskan Aleutian Chain is almost a character itself The reason I can t love this book is because of the extreme heartache and sadness surrounding the main characterwherever she goes, the black cloud followsand time and again we are forced to trudge through her misery It gets exhausting and frustrating And, I hated the endingso, this book rates 3 stars.