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Home > Children's Books > The Earth Made New

Cover of Living in Two Worlds
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pdf iconpages 36-37
pdf iconpages 40-41

The Earth Made New
compiled and illustrated by: Paul Goble
foreword by: Joe Medicine Crow
Subject(s): Age(s) / Grade level  / Lexile:

American Indian Children's Books Environment and Nature

6 and up / 5 / Lexile measure: 860L

Format: Size / page count:


9.5" × 11" / 40 pages

ISBN: Date available:


Available now




This book celebrates the American Indian belief that the cycle of Creation is taking place around us at all times. In this beautifully illustrated edition, replete with stunning watercolors, Goble tells the remarkable Plains Indian story of the remaking of Earth after the flood, when the creatures who survived in the water cried out to God, their Creator, “Earth Maker! Earth Maker! We want to live!” Earth Maker heard their cries and told them, “I will help you”. Earth Maker created birds and horses of every color and hid giant monsters in the rivers. Amazingly, Earth Maker asked for help from various creatures and received aid from Grandmother Turtle, who carried the Earth on her back, and the little black Coot bird. When making Man and Woman, Earth Maker laid them to dry under leaves. “Each morning he raised the leaves a little and peeped underneath. On the Fourth day Earth Maker told the figures to get up” and said, “I am your Father and Grandfather and the Earth is your Mother and Grandmother…. I will always be close to you.”

Weaving together the legends and myths of the Plains Indian tribes, including the stories of the Cheyenne, Blackfoot, Arapaho, and the Crow, this creation story also reveals the making of the buffaloes, mountains, plains, and plants, as well as Thunderbirds “with lightning in the blink of their eyes”. This revised edition contains 8 pages of additional illustrations and stories, as well as a new foreword by Joe Medicine Crow. It also includes an extensive reference list and detailed introductory note.


  • Gold Midwest Book Award for “Child/Young Adult Fiction”  

Reviews (hide/show)

“What a beautiful book! The illustrations would tell volumes all by themselves, but paired with the text they offer an extremely approachable entry into Plains Indian creation stories and mythology. An a non-Native American reader, I’ll have to say that this is the book of Native American mythology that has most made a connection for me and has somehow allowed me to understand and ‘live” in the mythology more than any other book.”
Midwest Book Award Judging Panel
The Earth Made New: Plains Indian Stories of Creation is the recent offering of Caldecott Medal-winning author/artist Paul Goble, creator of The Girl Who Loved Wild Horses, Buffalo Woman, and Mystic Horse. Illustrated throughout with beautiful, crisp, clean colored paintings, The Earth Made New tells many of the mysterious details of creation stories of the Plains Indians of North America. The text is spare but haunting, with many starred footnotes added to the pages to enrich the stories with further details or variations, each of which could be imagined to begin another whole story cycle of its own. Thus we have the feeling or effect of the presence of a true teller of the sacred tales when we hold and read The Earth Made New. Joe Medicine Crow gives high praise in his forward, saying, ‘Paul Goble has done a good job of presenting the Plains Indian story of creation.’ The Earth Made New will appeal to children (and their parents) age 6 and up.”
Midwest Book Review
“Paul Goble can wear his books as a mark of honor: so authentic is the writing and so brightly shining his love for the people whose stories he is retelling. Like the coot in this story, he digs deep in his search for the true traditions. His research takes him from the oldest recorded versions to the Indian storytellers of today. Goble attempts to recreate written stories as an oral storyteller would have told them. Therein lies the strength of the tale.…

“The glorious illustrations will surely entice reluctant readers: from the picture of the thundering horses (such swift movement) to the pictured stillness of the shaggy buffaloes. Each page can be the launching point for a reading activity and discussion on the Native American traditions, and traditions from other cultures. the birds are accurately drawn. Fourth grade readers can list names of the birds and animals pictured and enjoy the story of how their world was created.”
Anjali Amit, from a review on the website 4th Grade Reading (click here to read the entire review)

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