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Melanie Florence

Orca Limelights: He Who Dreams (Paperback)

Average Rating:out of 5 stars
Walmart # 569166167
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Juggling soccer, school, friends and family leaves John with little time for anything else. But one day at the local community center, following the sound of drums, he stumbles into an Indigenous dance class. Before he knows what's happening, John finds himself stumbling through beginner classes with a bunch of little girls, skipping soccer practice and letting his other responsibilities slide. When he attends a pow wow and witnesses a powerful performance, he realizes that he wants to be a dancer more than anything. But the nearest class for boys is at the Native Cultural Center in the city, and he still hasn't told his family or friends about his new passion. If he wants to dance, he will have to stop hiding. Between the mocking of his teammates and the hostility of the boys in his dance class, John must find a way to balance and embrace both the Irish and Cree sides of his heritage.


Series Title
Orca Limelights
Orca Book Publishers
Book Format
Original Languages
Number of Pages
Melanie Florence
He Who Dreams
Publication Date
January, 2017
Assembled Product Dimensions (L x W x H)
9.00 x 6.00 x 1.50 Inches

Customer Reviews

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Average Rating:(5.0)out of 5 stars

He Who Dreams by Melan...

He Who Dreams by Melanie Florence, published by Orca Book Publishers is a fabulous mirror/window middle grade novel. John McCaffrey is a typical young man, most likely middle school aged. He loves sports, does alright in school, and is a member of the school soccer team. John's mom is Cree and his dad is Irish. John is the spitting image of his dad, right down to the red hair so when John identifies as Indigenous he is often accused of lying. When he is tasked with dropping his younger sister off at her art lessons at the Community Centre, he hears the call of the drums. Those drums connect John to his roots and have him balancing between his need to dance and his commitment to his soccer team. He Who Dreams is a book that really requires you to ask questions and face your own biases. John does not look like a typical Indigenous young man, but really what does that even mean. We are so caught up in appearances and identifying people based on their looks instead of what is in their hearts. No one is immune. When John joins a dance group at the Native Cultural Centre, he is once again ostracized because he doesn't look like the rest of the dancers. He is accused of appropriating their culture when in fact it is his culture as well. This story is a great reminder to embrace our culture and really truly seek our connections to our family and our history. Those connections make us whole and provide us with support. In the beginning John struggles with juggling all of his responsibilities: soccer, school, dance, etc. In the end, his connection to his heritage makes him not only physically stronger, but mentally stronger and gives him the courage to acknowledge and own both sides of himself. A fantastic book for anyone who has experienced the hurt of being judged by their appearance and not by their heart,


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