Paintbrushes and Arrows: A Story of St. Augustine
by M.C. Finotti
Print Length: 96 pages
Publisher: Pineapple Press (October 1, 2016)
Publication Date: October 1, 2016
In 1875, Ahkah, a 9-year-old Comanche girl, is the only child in a group of 72 Plains Indians brought to the Castillo de San Marcos in St. Augustine for “re-education.” Callie Crump, a 14-year-old who has never so much as seen an Indian, begins to teach art classes to the prisoners. At first she is reluctant, but it doesn’t take long before she finds herself fascinated by the lives of the Native Americans at the fort. All the while, Akhah longs to return home, but finds comfort in learning an old skill, making bows and arrows to sell to tourists.
Paintbrushes and Arrows follows the lives of these two girls and their crafts, which bring them closer together than either could ever have guessed.
A common core teacher’s manual for this book is available through Teachers Paying Teachers.
Book available on Amazon
M.C. Finotti is a journalist and former teacher who grew up imagining what it would be like to live in the “olden days.” Ms. Finotti lives in Atlantic Beach, Florida, with her husband and two children. She is the author of The Treasure of Amelia Island, winner of the Florida Historical Society’s Horgan Award for children’s historical fiction.
I had the great pleasure talking with M.C. this weekend on the phone. I met her through Lou Aguilar. Previously I was talking with him about wanting more historical fiction stories set in Florida. That state is rich in history. Low and behold, he happened to know an author who wrote a story set in St. Augustine and gave her my phone number. This weekend I have been brainstorming ideas to promote work such as Finottis’. I look forward to what is to come out of this venture.
Paintbrushes and Arrows is a story for children but I think all ages would enjoy it. I aim to find out shorty by reading the book and writing a review. Be sure to be on the lookout for it!
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Stephanie M. Hopkins