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Publisher's Summary

Picture a Crow Indian elder, his wizened eyes catching yours in the ancient flicker of firelight. His mesmerizing stories span the ages, from Custer to World War II to the 21st Century. He is the last traditional chief of his people. He is over 90 years old. Now picture that same man lecturing at colleges nationwide and addressing the United Nations on the subject of peace. National Geographic presents the amazing life story of Joseph Medicine Crow, the man who begins life as Winter Man. Trained as a warrior by his grandfather Yellowtail, he bathes in icy rivers and endures the ceremony of "counting coup" - facing fierce combat with an enemy Sioux boy.

An operation at the local hospital brings the young Crow face-to-face with his worst fears: a Sioux, a ghost, and a white man. He excels at the white man's school and is raised in the Baptist faith. He translates the stories of the elder chiefs, becoming the link to the ancient traditions of the pre-reservation generation. His own dramatic and funny stories span both ages, and the ancient Crow legends are passed on in the storytelling tradition.

Joseph Medicine Crow's doctorate degree was interrupted by the call to arms of World War II. On the battlefields of Germany he earned the ancient status of War Chief by completing the four war deeds required of the Crow warrior. In 1948 the Crow Tribal Council appointed Joseph Medicine Crow (now called High Bird) their Tribal Historian and Anthropologist.

Counting Coup is a vibrant adventure narrative, bringing Native American history and culture alive for young readers. Joseph Medicine Crow's story illuminates the challenges faced by the Crow people as hurricanes of change raged through America. His epic story and its lessons are an essential legacy for us all.

©2006 Joseph Medicine Crow with Herman Viola (P)2010 Recorded Books

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A Good Educational Read

I happened on this book by accident. However, since I paid for it, I decided to read it. FYI. there are two books by this name. Read this one first and the other one next. We can never learn enough from our Native American forefathers. This book will enrich your life.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great potential

What did you like best about Counting Coup? What did you like least?

I found this book after reading about Joeph Medicine Crow's fascinating life in his obit in the New York Times....Unfortunately, this short book, really an essay, only leaves you wishing for more! His important accomplishments and poignant glimpses of his Crow childhood could have been developed in much more detail. The arc of his life demands a treatment like Louis Zamperini in Unbroken or Boys in the Boat.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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wonderful

this was a great book about a great Native American Chief. I was fascinated by his history and his accomplishments. Very inspirational

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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great

its good to hear the stories of the past. it makes me think about history

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Made me realize that I like Native American histor

I was born In crow agency and live in billings mt. So I know of a lot of the "white people" names today that are in the book. And it's interesting to find out where they came from. Joe's story is so inspiring it makes me want to get in touch with my crow tribal culture.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful