Near the end of the Stone Age, about 12,000 years ago, a young woman named Anooka lives with her family by a salmon-filled river. Although life with the Salmon Clan is comfortable, Anooka is restless. She discovers she has a talent for shaping the strange riverbank mud into small animal figures. Because her actions resemble carving, a practice prohibited to women, Anooka is forbidden to make her animals. Soon she begins to question the only traditions she has ever known. When a mysterious woman appears across the river, Anooka is faced with the most monumental decision of her life. Should she follow Raven Woman or stay with her clan?
Although Anooka and her people led lives very different from our own, Marjorie Cowley shows us that there are enormous parallels between her world and ours. Both the differences and the similarities are what make this a rich, well-told, and satisfying story.
The book has beautiful illustrations by Bryn Barnard who has recreated scenes of the past and future for both the National Geographic Society and NASA and has illustrated numerous books of history, science, and fantasy for children and adults. Anooka’s Answer is the first book he has illustrated for Clarion Books.