Monique Gray Smith

Monique Gray Smith is a mixed-heritage woman of Cree, Lakota and Scottish ancestry and a proud mom of twins. Monique is an accomplished consultant, writer and international speaker. Her first novel, Tilly: A Story of Hope and Resilience, won the 2014 Burt Award for First Nations, Métis and Inuit Literature. Monique and her family are blessed to live on Lekwungen territory in Victoria, British Columbia.
The Journey Forward, A Novella On Reconciliation
Traditional Territory: Dene, Métis
Format: Paperback
  • Two award-winning voices.
    Two stories on Reconciliation.
    Two amazing covers.
    One unforgettable book.



    The Journey Forward, A Novella On Reconciliation:

    When We Play Our Drums, They Sing!

    by Richard Van Camp

    This the story of 12-year-old Dene Cho, who is angry that his people are losing their language, traditions, and ways of being. Elder Snowbird is there to answer some of Dene Cho’s questions, and to share their history including the impact Residential schools continue to have on their people. It is through this conversation with Snowbird that Dene Cho begins to find himself, and begins to realize that understanding the past can ultimately change the future.

    Tessa Macintosh’s wonderful photographs are featured on the cover and interior of this memorable story.



    The Journey Forward, A Novella On Reconciliation:

    Lucy & Lola

    by Monique Gray Smith

    Lucy and Lola are 11-year-old twins who are heading to Gabriola Island, BC, to spend the summer with their Kookum (grandmother) while their mother studies for the bar exam. During their time with Kookum, the girls begin to learn about her experiences in being sent — and having to send their mother — to Residential school. Ultimately, they discover what it means to be inter-generational survivors.

    Award-winning illustrator Julie Flett created the amazing cover illustration and interior spot art that perfectly suit this engaging novella.



Authentic Canadian Content
$13.99

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Tilly: a Story of Hope and Resilience
Traditional Territory: Métis
Format: Paperback
  • Tilly has always known she’s part Lakota on her dad’s side. She’s grown up with the traditional teachings of her grandma, relishing the life lessons of her beloved mentor. But it isn’t until an angry man shouts something on the street that Tilly realizes her mom is Aboriginal, too—a Cree woman taken from her own parents as a baby.

    Tilly feels her mother’s pain deeply. She’s always had trouble fitting in at school, and when her grandma dies unexpectedly, her anchor is gone. Then Abby, a grade seven classmate, invites her home for lunch and offers her “something special” to drink. Nothing has prepared Tilly for the tingling in her legs, the buzz in her head and the awesome feeling that she can do anything. From then on, partying seems to offer an escape from her insecurities. But after one dangerously drunken evening, Tilly knows she has to change. Summoning her courage, she begins the long journey to finding pride in herself and her heritage. Just when she needs it most, a mysterious stranger offers some wise counsel: “Never question who you are or who your people are. It’s in your eyes. I know it’s in your heart.”

    Loosely based on author Monique Gray Smith’s own life, this revealing, important work of creative non-fiction tells the story of a young Indigenous woman coming of age in Canada in the 1980s. With compassion, insight and humour, Gray Smith illuminates the 20th-century history of Canada’s First Peoples—forced displacement, residen­tial schools, tuberculosis hospitals, the Sixties Scoop. In a spirit of hope, this unique story captures the irrepressible resilience of Tilly, and of Indigenous peoples everywhere

$19.95

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My Heart Fills with Happiness
Traditional Territory: Métis
Format: Board Book
  • The sun on your face. The smell of warm bannock baking in the oven. Holding the hand of someone you love. What fills your heart with happiness? This beautiful board book, with illustrations from celebrated artist Julie Flett, serves as a reminder for little ones and adults alike to reflect on and cherish the moments in life that bring us joy.

    International speaker and award-winning author Monique Gray Smith wrote My Heart Fills with Happiness to support the wellness of Indigenous children and families, and to encourage young children to reflect on what makes them happy.

    Awards
    - 2017 Christie Harris Illustrated Children's Literature Prize winner

    Reviews
    "A quiet loveliness, sense of gratitude, and—yes—happiness emanate from this tender celebration of simple pleasures, which features a cast of First Nations children and adults...Short, first-person phrases...revel in both solitary and familial activities...Flett’s crisp-edged paintings blend universal and culturally specific experiences." — Publishers Weekly, Starred, November 2015

    "Joyful and tender, this board book celebrates the activities that bring gladness through family and cultural connections...Flett’s quietly powerful gouache and digital collage illustrations emphasize the relationships between people...The sweet family story has universal appeal. A first purchase for all libraries." — School Library Journal, Starred, March 2016

    "A celebration of aboriginal culture...but also universal in its message: sometimes it's the simplest things that lift our spirits highest...[The book] is beautiful in both its appearance and its intention." — Quill & Quire, March 2016

    Additional Information
    24 pages | 7.00" x 7.00"

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$9.95

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Speaking Our Truth: A Journey of Reconciliation
Traditional Territory: Métis
Format: Paperback
  • Canada's relationship with its Indigenous people has suffered as a result of both the residential school system and the lack of understanding of the historical and current impact of those schools. Healing and repairing that relationship requires education, awareness and increased understanding of the legacy and the impacts still being felt by Survivors and their families. Guided by acclaimed Indigenous author Monique Gray Smith, readers will learn about the lives of Survivors and listen to allies who are putting the findings of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission into action.

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$29.95

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You Hold Me Up
Traditional Territory: Cree, Métis
Format: Hardcover
  • This vibrant picture book, beautifully illustrated by celebrated artist Danielle Daniel, encourages children to show love and support for each other and to consider each other’s well-being in their everyday actions.

    Consultant, international speaker and award-winning author Monique Gray Smith wrote You Hold Me Up to prompt a dialogue among young people, their care providers and educators about reconciliation and the importance of the connections children make with their friends, classmates and families. This is a foundational book about building relationships, fostering empathy and encouraging respect between peers, starting with our littlest citizens.

    Reviews
    "Smith's text is heartwarming! And the illustrations, by Danielle Daniel, reflect Native people in the present day. Like My Heart Fills with Happiness, this new book by Smith is one that parents, grandparents, pre-school and elementary teachers, and librarians, will want to have on their shelves." — Debbie Reese, American Indians in Children's Literature

    "People of all ages can find something of value within the pages of Monique Gray Smith and Danielle Daniel's book…Smith has Cree and Lakota ancestry, while Daniel is Métis. With this book, they become quiet and understated—yet powerful—voices in an age of reconciliation. You Hold Me Up is simple, yet beautiful, subtle but thought-provoking. It contains critical messages about love, unity, and support. Through carefully chosen words and strong, colourful are, the book presents an important reminder to readers to sustain and support one another. Highly Recommended." — CM Magazine

    "Perfect for a shared storytime as well as a lap-sit reading session, the actions of each person emphasize community, togetherness, and mutual respect. While sharing is a universal concept, Daniel's illustrations bring specificity to the narrative…Just as in Smith's board book My Heart Fills with Happiness, readers will joyfully make connections between their own communities and the indigenous one depicted here." — IndiePicks Magazine

    Additional Information
    32 pages | 9.00" x 9.00"

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$19.95

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