Review of We Are Water Protectors by Carole Lindstrom
As many of you know, we are working to build up the kids’ section of our website. When we heard of a new book by Carole Lindstrom for kids talking about the many Indigenous-lead battles to stop oil pipelines from destroying water, natural habitat, and sacred lands, we were eager to get our hands on it for a review.
The book is beautifully written and illustrated, with powerful language that tells the story of a young girl battling a “black snake.” The illustrations help support that the black snake is a pipeline, and talk about predictions from Elders in the community about it.
This is a very enjoyable book. Publisher’s weekly pin-pointed it as for ages 3-7. My 3 year old enjoyed it, however she didn’t understand the idea behind it all. My 10 year old, above the age range, understood more but would never have grasped what the story was about without an explanation.
This isn’t a bad thing–after all, it’s a picture book meant to be read by a parent, teacher, or guardian. If you’re planning to buy this as a gift for a child who may not have someone who will explain it to them, they might not get everything out of the book that they could.
At the end of the book, there’s a glossary and additional information that may be helpful for your child. I would definitely recommend this book as an opener for discussing the various pipeline fights, from the successful Dakota Access fight to Pipeline X whose battle is still ongoing.
All in all, this is probably one of my favorite environmental books aimed at young kids, and the only one I have read so far that I recommend. All of the other books that I have read have been picture books essentially aimed at adults. This book seemed to be genuinely for kids.