2017 - 2018 Selections

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Algonquin Spring: An Algonquin Quest Novel
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Algonquin;

Years after a devastating battle, Mahingan and his tribe struggle to recover a lost loved one.

Six years earlier in the fourteenth century, Mahingan and his tribe fought the Battle of the Falls against the Haudenosaunee. There were many losses, and Mahingan thought he had lost his wife, Wàbananang (Morning Star). But after the battle, he learned she was still alive, taken captive by the Haudenosaunee. Now on a desperate quest to rescue her, Mahingan and his small family are wintering north of the Ottawa River near present-day Lachute, Quebec. If they are to have any hope of recovering Wàbananang, though, they must first survive until spring.

At the same time, over 2,000 kilometres away in present-day Newfoundland, events taking place will affect four Native tribes: Mahingan’s, a group of Mi’kmaq, a Beothuk group, and a band of Haudenosaunee warriors led by Mahingan’s old nemesis, Ò:nenhste Erhar (Corn Dog) — a fierce Mohawk War Chief and Wàbananang’s captor.

Along the way, Mahingan’s brother, Mitigomij, will reveal his true self and powers. Then, an influential Mi’kmaq legend puts a new, powerful twist on events, and threatens to send things spiraling out of Mahingan’s control.

Educator Information
Recommended Ages: 12-15.

Series Information
This novel is part of the Algonquin Quest Series, a series of young adult novels from Algonquin author Rick Revelle.

Additional Information
296 pages | 5.00" x 8.00"

 

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$12.99

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Bearskin Diary
Authors:
Carol Daniels
Format: Paperback
In 2017-2018, Bearskin Diary was the award recipient for First Nation Communities Read.

Raw and honest, Bearskin Diary gives voice to a generation of First Nations women who have always been silenced, at a time when movements like Idle No More call for a national inquiry into the missing and murdered Aboriginal women. Carol Daniels adds an important perspective to the Canadian literary landscape.

Taken from the arms of her mother as soon as she was born, Sandy was only one of over twenty thousand Aboriginal children scooped up by the federal government between the 1960s and 1980s. Sandy was adopted by a Ukrainian family and grew up as the only First Nations child in a town of white people. Ostracized by everyone around her and tired of being different, at the early age of five she tried to scrub the brown off her skin. But she was never sent back into the foster system, and for that she considers herself lucky.

From this tragic period in her personal life and in Canadian history, Sandy does not emerge unscathed, but she emerges strong--finding her way by embracing the First Nations culture that the Sixties Scoop had tried to deny. Those very roots allow Sandy to overcome the discriminations that she suffers every day from her co-workers, from strangers and sometimes even from herself.
$21.95

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Beneath Raven Moon: Ba'naboy' Laxa Gwa'wina 'Makwala
Format: Hardcover
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Kwakwaka'wakw;

There are as many Creation stories as there are First Nations on Turtle Island. The story of a Great Flood is known to indigenous people in every corner of the world. But what about the Moon? Who made her? What was her intended purpose?

Beneath Raven Moon is an enchanting tale of the creation of Grandmother Moon and of the first time she wove her spell on a young, unsuspecting couple.

The story unfolds in the territory of the Kwakwaka’wakw people – now also known as British Columbia’s Inside Passage – where Raven and Eagle join together in good-natured conspiracy to foster a heart-warming romance.

Follow the magical vision of Métis author David Bouchard and Kwakwaka’wakw artist Andy Everson to learn why Raven found it necessary to bless us with the heavenly sphere that guides we two-leggeds and illuminates our night sky. And enjoy the enchantment of the music and flute of Mary Youngblood as you sit in wonder ... Beneath Raven Moon.  

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Authentic Indigenous Artwork
$24.95

In Re-Print
Betty: The Helen Betty Osborne Story
Artists:
Scott B. Henderson
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Cree;
Helen Betty Osborne, known as Betty to her closest friends and family, dreamed of becoming a teacher. She left her home to attend residential school and high school in a small town in Manitoba. On November 13, 1971, Betty was abducted and brutally murdered by four young men. Initially met with silence and indifference, her tragic murder resonates loudly today. Betty represents one of almost 1,200 Indigenous women in Canada who have been murdered or gone missing.

This book is a true account. Content may be disturbing to some readers.
$16.00

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Burning in this Midnight Dream
Authors:
Louise Bernice Halfe
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Cree;
Burning in the Midnight Dream is the latest collection of poems by Louise Bernice Halfe. Many were written in response to the grim tide of emotions, memories, dreams and nightmares that arose in her as the Truth and Reconciliation process unfolded.

In heart-wrenching detail, Halfe recalls the damage done to her parents, her family, herself. With fearlessly wrought verse, Halfe describes how the experience of the residential schools continues to haunt those who survive, and how the effects pass like a virus from one generation to the next. She asks us to consider the damage done to children taken from their families, to families mourning their children; damage done to entire communities and to ancient cultures.

Halfe's poetic voice soars in this incredibly moving collection as she digs deep to discover the root of her pain. Her images, created from the natural world, reveal the spiritual strength of her culture.
$16.95

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Celia's Song
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Nuu-chah-nulth (Nootka);

Mink is a witness, a shape shifter, compelled to follow the story that has ensnared Celia and her village, on the West coast of Vancouver Island in Nu:Chahlnuth territory. Celia is a seer who - despite being convinced she's a little "off" - must heal her village with the assistance of her sister, her mother and father, and her nephews. While mink is visiting, a double-headed sea serpent falls off the house front during a fierce storm. The old snake, ostracized from the village decades earlier, has left his terrible influence on Amos, a residential school survivor. The occurrence signals the unfolding of an ordeal that pulls Celia out of her reveries and into the tragedy of her cousin's granddaughter. Each one of Celia's family becomes involved in creating a greater solution than merely attending to her cousin's granddaughter. Celia's Song relates one Nu:Chahlnuth family's harrowing experiences over several generations, after the brutality, interference, and neglect resulting from contact with Europeans.

Educator Information
Grade 11/12 English First Peoples resource for the unit Further Steps toward Reconciliation.

Additional Information
280 pages | 5.50" x 8.50"

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$20.00

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Dreamcatcher and the Seven Deceivers
Format: Hardcover
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian;

Dreamcatcher and the Seven Deceivers, the sequel to the Seven Sacred Teachings, warns of voices we can expect to hear in our dreamtime – voices that do not represent the Sacred Teachings.

These are the voices of Seven Deceivers who are spoken of by name. The allure of their whisperings is carefully spelled out in order that all might come to know what to listen for. Dreamcatcher and the Seven Deceivers is a carefully woven telling of how and why Creator sent Trickster to Turtle Island with a gift that would help us see the light and resist temptation. At a time before distant religions and churches came with their teachings, their commandmentsand their seven cardinal sins, we knew. We knew the way of the Good Red Road. We knew the right way to live; not through commandments but through Sacred Teachings – Teachings that were given to us long before their arrival. And we knew we would be tested by Seven Deceivers – what they called seven cardinal sins. We knew because we had been forewarned. And when these distant churches arrived with their teachings, their relicsand their symbols, we had our own. One was the Dreamcatcher.

Rooted in humility and honesty, the creators have tried to respect the cultures and traditions of all peoples. It is our hope that this telling will unite and thus heal divisions. Prophecies tell that this is the time for One Heart, One Mind and One Drum. We, readers and authors alike, are the ones we have been waiting for. There is nobody else who can revitalize our culture and values except ourselves.

It is our hope that this telling might move readers toward greater courage and wisdom and ultimately toward achieving and understanding what is true in life’s journey.

Additional Information
35 pages

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$21.95

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Fire Fight
Format: Paperback
After her ikusin (grandmother) dies, Kai Hunter, a part-Navajo, part-Stoney Nakoda 16-year-old, runs away to Banff, Alberta, to avoid being placed in a foster home. Kai lies her way into a new identity, a job, and a safe place to live. She makes new friends and volunteers with a rapid attack crew for the forestry service. She even meets a great guy named Rory, who's into motorcycles, just like her - and who seems to be into her, too. But Kai is scared of being found out, and she isn't sure that she can trust all of her new friends...or that she likes the person she's pretending to be. Meanwhile, she's got to pay rent, figure out whether Rory is boyfriend material, and assist the rap-attack crew as they face a string of suspicious forest fires. In the thrilling conclusion to this romantic adventure, Kai's choices become matters of life and death.

R.L. 3.5
$11.95

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Fire Starters
Artists:
Scott B. Henderson
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations;

Looking for a little mischief after finding an old flare gun, Ron and Ben suddenly find themselves in trouble when the local gas bar on Agamiing Reserve goes up in flames, and they are wrongly accused of arson by the sheriff’s son. As the investigation goes forward, community attitudes are revealed, and the truth slowly comes to light.

Reviews
"Storm's story is a very thoughtful look at the two systems of justice. The Native boys in the White system, being interrogated is a stark contrast to what the White boy experiences in the Native system of justice. It points to the path Storm is looking for: how a community can heal, rather than how it could punish and inflict more harm on people... I recommend Jen Storm's Fire Starters. There's a lot to study, think about, and of course, talk about." -- Debbie Reese, American Indians in Children's Literature

"Fire Starters reminds readers of the many perspectives involved in reconciliation. The story moves beyond Ron and Ben’s experiences as aboriginal teens poorly treated by a white community to include the experiences of law enforcement officers, family members, and even the arsonists themselves. Complementing the fast-paced plot, Henderson’s artwork is drawn from a wide variety of perspectives, and Yaciuk’s moody colours suit the rising tension experienced by all characters. A cautionary tale about the consequences of prejudice and racism, Fire Starters is a valuable addition to conversations about the importance of reconciliation and the power of the truth." -- Roseanne Gauthier, National Reading Campaign 

Educator & Series Information
Recommended Grades: 6-9

Fire Starters is one book in The Debwe Series.  This series features exceptional Indigenous writing from across Canada.

 
Additional Information
56 pages | 6.00" x 10.00" | Graphic Novel
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$18.95

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I Want
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Kwantlen;

Joseph A. Dandurand is a member of Kwantlen First Nation located on the Fraser River about twenty minutes east of Vancouver. He resides there with his three children Danessa, Marlysse, and Jace.

Joseph is the Heritage/Lands Officer for his people and has been performing his duties for 20 years now. He has been tasked with protecting his people’s heritage from the many destructive elements of development in the Kwantlen territory.

Joseph loves to fish. 
He loves to write plays. 
He loves to write books of poetry. 
He also loves to watch his 
daughter Danessa play soccer and hockey. 

Joseph is in love with and follows his rich culture. 
It is his and his family’s medicine 
and it carries them thru the winters 
and into the spring time 
when the fish start 
to come back into the river. 

Joseph loves to fish.

$19.95

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Indigenous Writes: A Guide to First Nations, Métis & Inuit Issues in Canada
Format: Paperback

In Indigenous Writes, Chelsea Vowel initiates myriad conversations about the relationship between Indigenous peoples and Canada. An advocate for Indigenous worldviews, the author discusses the fundamental issues—the terminology of relationships; culture and identity; myth-busting; state violence; and land, learning, law and treaties—along with wider social beliefs about these issues. She answers the questions that many people have on these topics to spark further conversations at home, in the classroom, and in the larger community.

$29.00

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Inuit Kinship and Naming Customs
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Inuit;
Traditionally, Inuit do not call each other by their given names. Instead, they refer to each other using a system of kinship and family terms, known as tuqurausiit (turk-thlo-raw-seet). Calling each other by kinship terms is a way to show respect and foster closeness within families. Children were named after their elders and ancestors, ensuring a long and healthy life.

As more and more Inuit refer to each other by their English first names, rather than their traditional kinship terms, the tradition of tuqurausiit is slowly disappearing. This book presents interviews with four Inuit elders from Baffin Region, Nunavut, about how names were chosen, the importance of using kinship terms, and how the practice of tuqurausiit has changed over the years. Inuit Kinship and Naming Customs helps to preserve the knowledge of this tradition for younger generations, both Inuit and non-Inuit.
$19.95

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Just Pretending
Format: Paperback

From one of Canada's most exciting new Metis voices comes a book whose recurring themes include the complexities of identity, belonging/not belonging, Aboriginal adoption, loss and abandonment, regret and insecurity.

A deadbeat dad tries to reconnect with his daughter after 22 years away. A selfish poet has been scarred by an upbringing that leaves him emotionally distant from his children and spouse. A pot-smoking middle-aged man undertakes a modest quest for meaning following a brush with mortality. A fourteen-year-old girl struggles to come to terms with her feelings of abandonment.

The characters are often fragile, sometimes unlikeable, but ultimately can be identified or sympathized with. At the centre of the stories are notions of identity and belonging, and the complex relationships between children and parents, both those who are real and those who are just pretending.

Reviews
"In Just Pretending, Saskatchewan-based Métis writer Lisa Bird-Wilson offers 24 brisk tales featuring characters asking this question. The title character in “Billy Bird” visits his Mooshum (grandfather in Cree), who is dying slowly in a rehab centre. While he is there, he reflects on his place in a never-ending circle. “His whole family is there sharing the circle with him, people he looks like, people he’s connected to, people whose traits he shares, people whose history is his own, grannies and grampas, Nehiyaw and Métis, all connected by the silky red thread.” Billy has a powerful ache to belong, to know himself through others." - Yutaka Dirks, briarpatch

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$18.95

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Kiyam: Poems
Authors:
Naomi McIlwraith
Format: Paperback
Through poems that move between the two languages, McIlwraith explores the beauty of the intersection between nêhiyawêwin, the PlainsCree language, and English, âkayâsîmowin. Written to honour her father's facility in nêhiyawêwin and her mother's beauty and generosity as an inheritor of Cree, Ojibwe, Scottish, and English, kiyâm articulates a powerful yearning for family,history, peace, and love.
$16.95

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Missing Nimama
Artists:
Francois Thisdale
Format: Hardcover
Text Content Territories: Cree;

A young mother, one of the many missing indigenous women, watches over her small daughter as she grows up without her nimama, experiencing important milestones - her first day of school, first dance, first date, wedding, first child - from afar.

A free verse story of love, loss, and acceptance told in alternating voices. Missing Nimama shows the human side of a tragic set of circumstances.

An afterword by the author provides a simple, age-appropriate context for young readers. Includes a glossary of Cree terms.

Reviews
"A free-verse intergenerational story of separation, loss, and daughter-mother connection amid the ongoing crisis of missing First Nations girls and women. . . On each page, Cree author Florence presents two narratives: Kateri's and her missing nimâmâ's. By juxtaposing the daughter's and mother's thoughts and feelings in complementary verse, Florence provides them the opportunity to experience life together from their respective points of view and to talk to each other from a distance. Thisdale's soft-edged, wistful artwork enriches the heartfelt story, strongly capturing the passage of time and Kateri's emotional journey. An afterword is appended, offering simple and relevant information as well as statistics of missing and murdered indigenous girls and women; together with the story, it should help to begin a conversation with young readers. A solid debut picture book that works as a record of voices that are usually unheard, ignored, and forgotten." — Kirkus Reviews

"A touching story related from the point of view of a missing indigenous woman as she watches her daughter grow up without her."— Quill and Quire

Educator Information
This is a picture book best suited for more mature readers (teenagers), as it deals with mature themes and subject matter.

Additional Information
32 pages | 8.50" x 11.00"

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$19.95

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