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Reviewed by Delene Vrey for Readers' Favorite
Of all indigenous peoples in the world, the Incas and the tribes found in the Amazon jungle are those whose culture and history have not been preserved much in written texts. Much of their history was lost with the conquistadores and the slaughter of a great many people. The Hidden way by Harrison M Love artfully takes the loose myths and legends of the peoples around the Amazon as told by a Yuyachij (a rememberer of the people of the Amazon), weaving them into a powerful tale of coming of age. Khay is a young girl and the granddaughter of a Shaman. After having survived one tragedy already, when an ominous sign appears in the image of the Kalkus, Khay and her grandfather leave to find the hidden way to the city in the middle of the jungle that has kept their culture safe from the outside world. On their journey, Khay's grandfather starts to teach her the Shaman's way, although it is not allowed. Khay is strong and wants to learn, but she suffers a significant loss when she finds what they are looking for. She has to decide which direction her road will lead and what she can offer the world.
The Hidden way by Harrison M Love is a work of art. Telling the story of a journey through the different landscapes found in the Amazon, highlighting the many different animals and plant life, and then adding the myths and legends together with the metaphysical aspects is a brilliant concept. With the beautiful images that complement the chapters, the book takes the reader into another world where myths and the spiritual world are found in abundance. The end reconnects with the beginning, where the rememberer describes what the position of rememberer entails and means. I love the illustrations that give the reader a visual idea of what the story wants to convey. This is a must-read for anyone enthralled by indigenous myths and legends. But be warned that as you embark on this adventure through the jungle, you will learn many things, supported by the writing style and word choice.