Feathered Serpent, Dark Heart of Sky: Myths of Mexico

Feathered Serpent, Dark Heart of Sky: Myths of Mexico

by David Bowles

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Overview

The stories in Feathered Serpent, Dark Heart of Sky trace the history of the world from its beginnings in the dreams of the dual god, Ometeotl, to the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors in Mexico and the fall of the great city Tenochtitlan. In this book’s beautiful language, we learn the history of the Creator Twins―Feathered Serpent and Dark Heart of Sky―and how they built the world on a leviathan's back; of the shape-shifting nahualli; and the aluxes, elfish beings known to help out the occasional wanderer. And finally, we read Aztec tales about the arrival of the blonde strangers from across the sea, the strangers who seek to upend the rule of Moctezuma and destroy the very stories we are reading.

David Bowles stitches together the fragmented folklore and mythology of pre-Colombian Mexico into an exciting, unified narrative in the tradition of William Buck's Ramayana, Robert Fagles's Iliad, and Neil Gaiman's Norse Myths. Readers of Norse and Greek mythologies will delight in this rich retelling of stories less explored. These tales hold a touch of magical realism while holding true to their meanings and their Indigenous roots.

Legends and myths captured David Bowles's imagination as a young Latino reader; he was fascinated with epics like the Iliad and the Odyssey. Despite growing up on the United States/Mexico border, he had never read a single Aztec or Mayan myth until he was in college. This experience inspired him to reconnect with that forgotten past. He is currently working on adapting stories from Feathered Serpent, Dark Heart of Sky for a younger audience with the middle grade graphic novel series Tales of the Feathered Serpent. The first installment, Rise of the Halfling King tells the story of the dwarf king of Uxmal. Several of his previous books have also incorporated themes from Mexican myths that are told throughout generations such as the middle grade graphic novel, The Chupacabras of the Rio Grande (The Unicorn Rescue Series) which includes the infamous chupacabra, a creature from Latin American folklore that sucks the blood of livestock, goats, and even people. His other works include They Call Me Guero: A Border Kid’s Poems which won the Pura Belpré Honor award, the TIL Best Middle Grade Book award, the Tomás Rivera award, and numerous other honors.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781941026724
Publisher: Cinco Puntos Press
Publication date: 05/22/2018
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 480,113
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Legends and myths captured David Bowles's imagination as a young Latino reader; he was fascinated with epics like the Iliad and the Odyssey. Despite growing up on the United States/Mexico border, he had never read a single Aztec or Mayan myth until he was in college. This experience inspired him to reconnect with that forgotten past. He is currently working on adapting stories from Feathered Serpent, Dark Heart of Sky for a younger audience with the middle grade graphic novel series Tales of the Feathered Serpent. The first installment, Rise of the Halfling King tells the story of the dwarf king of Uxmal. Several of his previous books have also incorporated themes from Mexican myths that are told throughout generations such as the middle grade graphic novel, The Chupacabras of the Rio Grande (The Unicorn Rescue Series) which includes the infamous chupacabra, a creature from Latin American folklore that sucks the blood of livestock, goats, and even people. His other works include They Call Me Guero: A Border Kid’s Poems which won the Pura Belpré Honor award, the TIL Best Middle Grade Book award, the Tomás Rivera award, and numerous other honors.

Table of Contents

Introduction 9

The First Three Ages of the World 15

Convocation 17

Origins 18

The Heavens and the Underworld 24

The First Three Ages of the World 29

The Fourth Age and the Hero Twins 37

Convocation 39

The Hero Twins 41

The Fourth Sun and the Flood 68

The Fifth Age and the Reign of Demigods 73

Convocation 75

The Creation of Human Beings 76

The Fifth Sun and the Harbingers of Darkness 83

Lord Opossum Brings Fire to Humanity 89

Itzpapalotl and the Cloud Serpents 93

The Birth of Huitzilopochtli 98

Archer of the Sun 101

The Toltecs and the Rise of Civilization 107

Convocation 109

Tollan and the Toltec Queens 111

The Brothers Incarnated 118

Tales of the Maya 141

Convocation 143

The Dwarf King of Uxmal 145

The Rise of Hunak Keel 152

Sak Nikte and the Fall of Chichen Itza 158

The Tale of Xtabay 171

Aztecs Ascendant 177

Convocation 178

The Mexica Exodus 179

Hapunda and the Lake 194

The Volcanoes 201

Tenochtitlan 208

Tlacaelel and the Rise of the Mexica 216

Conquest and Courage 239

Convocation 241

Malinalli and the Coming of Cortés 243

The Torture of Cuauhtemoc 250

The Anguish of Citlali 256

Erendira 262

Donaji 275

Guide to Pronunciation 285

Glossary 287

Notes on Sources 295

Bibliography 299

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