Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 13 to 14
- Grade: 8 to 9
First a multiple award-winning film produced for television, then a novel and winner of the 1978 Gibson Literary Award, then a perennial bestseller, Dreamspeaker is the powerful and deeply moving story of a boy caught between two worlds, who learns too late the healing strength of faith and love. In a desperate attempt to escape the institution where he has been committed and to exorcise the unnamed evil that haunts him, Peter Baxter runs deep into the forests of British Columbia. Hungry, injured and pursued by inescapable horror, Peter is rescued by an old Native Dreamspeaker and his mute companion. Through their teachings, Peter discovers the power of the Indian spirit world--and the courage to face his terror alone.
About the author
Anne Cameron was born in Nanaimo, BC. She began writing at an early age, starting with theatre scripts and screenplays. In 1979, her film Dreamspeaker, directed by Claude Jutra, won seven Canadian Film Awards, including best script. After being published as a novel, Dreamspeaker went on to win the Gibson Award for Literature. She has published more than 30 books, including the underground classic Daughters of Copper Woman, its sequel, Dzelarhons, novels, stories, poems and legends - for adults and children. Her most recent novels are Family Resemblances, Hardscratch Row, and a new, revised edition of Daughters of Copper Woman. She lives in Tahsis, BC
"Dreamspeaker is a novel that crosses adult and children's literature boundaries in multiple ways...I would recommend that any adult who gives Dreamspeaker to a child read it along with the child and be more than prepared to discuss, laugh with, and cry over this remarkable novel."
-Norah Bowman, prairiefire
Canadian Materials Rating: ****/4
"Anne Cameron first wrote Dreamspeaker as a film script. The 1967 movie by the same name, directed by Claude Jutra, won seven Canadian film awards and was subsequently telecast on the American Public Broadcasting System and on the British Broadcasting Corporation. Then Cameron wrote the story as a novel, one which has been recommended as supplementary reading in a number of school systems across Canada and is on the curriculum of Nipissing University in North Bay and the First Nations University of Canada.
-Ruth Latta, Canadian Materials (June 24, 2005)
DreamspeakerWhen 11-year-old Peter escapes the institution for delinquent boys and runs deep into a forest, he discovers the power of the native spirit world – and the courage to face his terror alone. Originally published under the pseudonym Cam Hubert, by Stoddart in 1978.
Source: The Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Canadian Children’s Book News. 2006.