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in Text Content Territory: "Blackfoot Confederacy (Siksikaitsitapi)"

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Teen Books
Truth And Bright Water
Format: Paperback

With a plethora of superb reviews, Thomas King’s latest work affirms him as one of our wittiest and wisest writers. Truth & Bright Water is the tale of two young cousins and one long summer. Tecumseh and Lum live in Truth, a small American town, and Bright Water, the reserve across the border and over the river. Family is the only reason most of the people stay in the towns, and yet old secrets and new mysteries keep pulling the more nomadic residents back to the fold.

Monroe Swimmer, famous Indian artist, returns to live in the old church with the hope of painting it into the prairie landscape and re-establishing the buffalo population. Tecumseh’s Aunt Cassie has come back too, already arguing with his mother. Why has his mother given Cassie a suitcase full of baby clothes? And why is Lum interested only in winning the Indian Days race?

Tecumseh has more questions than anyone will answer, until the Indian Days festival arrives and the mysteries of the summer collide in love, betrayal and reconciliation.

Equally plainspoken and poetic, comic and poignant, Truth & Bright Water is a crackling good story that resonates with universal truths.

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Kids Books
Murder on the Ridge
Authors:
Ted Stenhouse
Format: Paperback

This is a poignant and memorable tale of an extraordinary summer and the chain of events leading up to this summer, in a small prairie town in 1952. The friendship between William, a white boy, and Arthur, a Blackfoot boy, resounds with honesty. Part mystery novel, part historical fiction, this novel is an engaging and thought-provoking story of secrets, friendship, and racism, and will especially resonate with boys.

Educator Information
Recommended Ages: 10-14

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240 pages | 5.00" x 8.00"

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$8.95

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Books
Medicine River
Format: Paperback

When Will returns to Medicine River, he thinks he is simply attending his mother's funeral. He doesn't count on Harlen Bigbear and his unique brand of community planning. Harlen tries to sell Will on the idea of returning to Medicine River to open shop as the town's only Native photographer. Somehow, that's exactly what happens.

Through Will's gentle and humorous narrative, we come to know Medicine River, a small Albertan town bordering a Blackfoot reserve. And we meet its people: the basketball team; Louise Heavyman and her daughter, South Wing; Martha Oldcrow, the marriage doctor; Joe Bigbear, Harlen's world-travelling, storytelling brother; Bertha Morley, who has a short fling with a Calgary dating service; and David Plume, who went to Wounded Knee. At the centre of it all is Harlen, advising and pestering, annoying and entertaining, gossiping and benevolently interfering in the lives of his friends and neighbours.

Educator Information
Recommended Grades: 10-11

Grade 10/11 English First Peoples resource included in the unit Relationships - Families, Friendships, Communities, and the Land.

Additional Information
320 pages | 5.31" x 8.25"

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$21.00

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Books
The Story of the Blackfoot People: Nitsitapiisinni
Format: Paperback

For the first time in history, the Blackfoot people share their culture, beliefs and traditions with the rest of the world.

In an innovative partnership with the Glenbow Museum in Calgary, Alberta, a team of elders and spiritual leaders from the Blackfoot community agreed to share their history, traditions and artifacts in an effort to document their lives. The Story of the Blackfoot People: Nitsitapiisinni is the first piece of permanent documentation written by the leaders of the Blackfoot community about their lives both past and present.

This book chronicles all the important aspects of Blackfoot life and history. The book begins by exploring the fundamental belief systems of the Blackfoot including their traditional stories, sacred places, dances and ceremonies. Strong relationships are recognized by the Blackfoot as one of the most important keys to survival and the roles of men, women, children and elders, and their sacred connection to nature and their environment, are examined in detail. Less harmonious relationships are also candidly explored including relations between the Blackfoot people and the governments of the United States and Canada. In its moving conclusion, the Blackfoot community discusses the importance of uniting ancient traditions with modern challenges in order for their legacy to survive.

Revealing the enduring strength and fortitude of spirit of the Blackfoot people, this book will have meaning for both native and non-native readers alike.

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Books
Green Grass, Running Water
Format: Paperback

Strong, sassy women and hard-luck, hard-headed men, all searching for the middle ground between Native American tradition and the modern world, perform an elaborate dance of approach and avoidance in this magical, rollicking tale by award-winning author Thomas King. Alberta, Eli, Lionel and others are coming to the Blackfoot reservation for the Sun Dance. There they will encounter four Indian elders and their companion, the trickster Coyote—and nothing in the small town of Blossom will be the same again...

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Kids Books
Little Chief and Mighty Gopher: The Pemmican Frenzy
Artists:
Ben Crane
Format: Hardcover

Discover what happens when a young boy’s friendship with a gopher turns everyone’s life upside down!

Written by Indigenous author Victor Lethbridge and beautifully illustrated by Ben Crane, Little Chief and Mighty Gopher: The Pemmican Frenzy tells the story of a young boy who finds friends and acceptance in unexpected places. This is a funny, heartfelt story of hope, empowerment and determination suited to young readers, the young at heart and those who struggle with bullying and rejection.

This book has already become a Canadian bestseller and winner of numerous awards. It has become a favourite among many young readers and has garnered much attention in the literary world.

Anticipation is growing to see what adventures lie ahead for “Little Chief” and his cast of friends!

Awards

  • 2011 Alberta Book Award: Children’s and Young Adult Book of the Year
  • 2011 Nautilus Book Award Silver Medalist - Children’s Book Category
  • 2010 SIWC Griffin Award
  • 2010 Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards Bronze Medalist - Best First Book

Educator Information
Included: Bonus CD with narrated story and song. Special Feature: Word translation in Sioux, Cree, and Blackfoot.

Additional Information
34 pages | 10.00" x 9.25"

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Books
Akaitsinikssiistsi: Blackfoot Stories of Old
Format: Paperback

This collection of eight stories represents an introduction to Niits'powahsini, the Blackfoot language, and includes a pronunciation guide and Blackfoot-to-English glossary.

In these stories Ikkinainihki, "Gentle Singer," recalls events from childhood and tells of her Elders, the cold weather of the Plains, a crying spirit, rattlesnakes, and more. This collection opens with a prayer and a small essay on the importance of preserving Niitsi'powahsini.

Blackfoot Stories of Old will be of great value to native speakers, new learners, linguists, and those looking for insights into the Blackfoot people, who live in present-day Alberta and Montana.

Educator Information
The third volume in the First Nations Language Readers series--meant for language learners and language users--this collection presents eight Blackfoot stories told by Lena Russell, a fluent speaker of Blackfoot from the Kainai (Blood) reserve in southern Alberta.

In contract with other Algonquian languages, such as Cree and Saulteaux (Ojibwe), Blackfoot is not usually written in syllabics, so these stories are presented in the Blackfoot language using the Roman alphabet, together with the English translation. The spelling system is based on the conventions of the International Phonetic Alphabet, and should be transparent for native speakers of Blackfoot as well as for linguists. The Reader includes a Blackfoot-to-English glossary containing all the nouns, verbs, adjuncts, etc., found in the texts, as well as stress or pitch accents over the vowel or vowels which bear the accent.

Series Information
Akaitsinikssiistsi: Blackfoot Stories of Old is part of the First Nations Language Readers series. With a mix of traditional and new stories, each First Nations Language Reader introduces an Indigenous language and demonstrates how each language is used today. The University of Regina Press’s long-term goal is to publish all 60+ Indigenous languages of Canada.

Additional Information
96 pages | 5.50" x 8.50"

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$24.95

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Books
Black Apple (PB)
Format: Paperback

A dramatic and lyrical coming-of-age novel about a young Blackfoot girl who grows up in the residential school system on the Canadian prairies.

Torn from her home and delivered to St. Mark’s Residential School for Girls by government decree, young Rose Marie finds herself in an alien universe where nothing of her previous life is tolerated, not even her Blackfoot name. For she has entered into the world of the Sisters of Brotherly Love, an order of nuns dedicated to saving the Indigenous children from damnation. Life under the sharp eye of Mother Grace, the Mother General, becomes an endless series of torments, from daily recitations and obligations to chronic sickness and inedible food. And then there are the beatings. All the feisty Rose Marie wants to do is escape from St. Mark’s. How her imagination soars as she dreams about her lost family on the Reserve, finding in her visions a healing spirit that touches her heart. But all too soon she starts to see other shapes in her dreams as well, shapes that warn her of unspoken dangers and mysteries that threaten to engulf her. And she has seen the rows of plain wooden crosses behind the school, reminding her that many students have never left here alive.

Set during the Second World War and the 1950s, Black Apple is an unforgettable, vividly rendered novel about two very different women whose worlds collide: an irrepressible young Blackfoot girl whose spirit cannot be destroyed, and an aging yet powerful nun who increasingly doubts the value of her life. It captures brilliantly the strange mix of cruelty and compassion in the residential schools, where young children are forbidden to speak their own languages and given Christian names. As Rose Marie matures, she finds increasingly that she knows only the life of the nuns, with its piety, hard work and self-denial. Why is it, then, that she is haunted by secret visions—of past crimes in the school that terrify her, of her dead mother, of the Indigenous life on the plains that has long vanished? Even the kind-hearted Sister Cilla is unable to calm her fears. And then, there is a miracle, or so Mother Grace says. Now Rose is thrust back into the outside world with only her wits to save her.

With a poet’s eye, Joan Crate creates brilliantly the many shadings of this heartbreaking novel, rendering perfectly the inner voices of Rose Marie and Mother Grace, and exploring the larger themes of belief and belonging, of faith and forgiveness.

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Kids Books
Little Chief and The Gifts of Morning Star
Artists:
Ben Crane
Format: Hardcover

This book introduces a young girl and her horse into Little Chief’s life. Their adventure takes them on an exquisite journey which transforms her loss and grieving into self-discovery and resilience through a new found hope.

Educator Information
This story takes readers of all ages on an adventure that teaches them about the circle of life. Singing Feather joins Little Chief who helps transform her loss and grieving of a treasured friend, in this case, Silver Sage her old and heroic horse, into self-discovery and resilience by finding a new hope.

The book comes with an attached CD of narration in English, Cree, Blackfoot and Lakokta as well as a song.

Additional Information
34 pages | 10.00" x 9.25"

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$21.95

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Books
Napi: The Trickster
Authors:
Hugh A. Dempsey
Format: Paperback

An enthralling collection of traditional Blackfoot stories revealing the frailty of mankind and the enduring power of narrative.

Napi, the Old Man of the Blackfoot Nation, appears prominently in mythology, sometimes as a quasi-Creator, sometimes a fool, and sometimes a brutal murderer. Although Napi is given credit for creating many of the objects and creatures on Earth, and indeed the Earth itself, the Blackfoot do not consider him to be god-like. Napi stories tell of this mythical figure creating the world and everything in it, but getting into trouble when he starts tinkering with his own creation. Perhaps for this reason, anthropologists have labelled him a trickster/creator.

For thousands of years, people have gathered around the campfire and listened to stories of how Napi blundered and schemed his way through Blackfoot country. They laugh at how Napi was outwitted by a lame fox, how he tried to fly with the geese only to look down when he was told not to and fell to the earth. He makes a perfect subject for telling, listening, and enjoying—and for teaching.

Hugh Dempsey, venerable historian and strong ally of the Blackfoot Nation, has gathered together a number of Napi stories passed on through oral tradition, many recorded and analysed by outsiders, but used by permission of Blackfoot elders. These stories offer complex insight into an ancient and still-thriving culture through the figure of a flawed yet powerful creature—a mirror of humankind itself.

Reviews
"By gathering together a sizeable collection of stories passed down through oral tradition, Dempsey and Koski offer insight into a venerable and still-thriving culture, as well as a piece of history to be kept and passed on to younger generations for years to come." — Vue Weekly

Additional Information
144 pages | 6.00" x 9.00" 

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$19.95

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