Monday, June 1, 2015

Quebecois Joseph Ernest Nephthali DuFault's Creates the American Cowboy, Will James

Nonfiction Monday (sort of)

I just read an amazing article at Second Look Books (June 1, 2015 entry) about one of my favorite horse stories. The article begins this way:
"In 1927, Will James won the Newbery Medal for his novel Smokey: The Cow-horse.  The story was based on James's real life, and on James's real horse, a blue roan named Smokey. James worked as a cowboy, ranch hand, and rodeo performer for horse and cattle ranches in the Western Canadian provinces and in the American Dakotas, Montana, New Mexico and California. It was James's third novel, and like all those previous and all those yet to come, it was self illustrated…. Three years later he published his autobiography, Lone Cowboy: My Life Story…. It's a great story and it's a complete lie."

After talking about the book itself, the article goes on to explain that Will James was NOT his name and he wasn't an American cowboy. (although he did work as a cowboy in the midwestern United States.)  He was Canadian. French-Canadian in fact.
Which is why the title of this blog post (and the blog post on Second Look Books) says Quebecois (a person from Quebec, Canada) Joseph Ernest Nephthali DuFault….

A teacher, perhaps a middle school teacher, could match Smokey with Will James's autobiography and  the information in Second Look Book's essay about the book. The three bits of information make a complete common core lesson.

More books recommended for Nonfiction Monday can be found at the Nonfiction Monday blog.

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