Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 10 to 14
- Grade: 5 to 9
When twelve-year-old Hannah uncovers an ancient Salish spindle whorl hidden in a cave near her home in Cowichan Bay, she is transported back to a village called Tl'ulpalus, in a time before Europeans had settled in the area. Through the agency of a trickster raven, Hannah befriends Yisella, a young Salish girl, and is welcomed into village life. Here she discovers that the spindle whorl is the prize possession of Yisella's mother, Skeepla, a famous spinner and weaver. When Skeepla falls victim to smallpox, Hannah finally begins to open up about the death of her own mother. Hannah and Yisella are then accidentally left behind when the villagers journey to the mainland, and they witness the arrival of Governor James Douglas and numerous settlers on the Hecate. As the settlers pillage the village for souvenirs, Hannah and Yisella rescue the spindle whorl and, pursued by the ship's crew, escape into the dark forest. From the refuge in the cave, Hannah returns to her own time with a greater understanding of herself and the history of the First Nations.
About the author
Carol Anne Shaw has always loved to write stories and draw. As a child, she was forever being reprimanded for drawing in her textbooks and creating cartoons of her least favourite teachers. Hannah & the Spindle Whorl, her first novel, grew out of her fascination with the history of British Columbia, and especially its First Nations people. She spends a fair bit of time enjoying the natural beauty of Vancouver Island where she makes her home along with her husband, two sons and two dogs. When she isn't writing, she can be found painting at her easel, walking in the woods, and finding excuses not to wear shoes.
- Short-listed, ForeWord Book of the Year Award
- Winner, Silver Moonbeam Children's Book Award
- Short-listed, Chocolate Lily Award
“Time travel is difficult to handle well. Here Carol Anne Shaw has fully succeeded. The choice of a local setting makes her tale all the more authentic so that the reader may appreciate that the magic of the journey is centered in that real world. It leaves a sense that magic can, and often does, lie in real places.” — Deakin Newsletter