Shopping Basket Shopping Basket      Sign Up / Sign In     
ONLINE SALES: 250.758.4287  or  Toll Free 1.888.278.2202
RETAIL STORE: 250.585.1549

Foster Care

1 - 8 of 8 Results
Sort By
From the Ashes: My Story of Being Metis, Homeless, and Finding My Way
Format: Paperback
Grade Levels: 12; University/College;

In this extraordinary and inspiring debut memoir, Jesse Thistle, once a high school dropout and now a rising Indigenous scholar, chronicles his life on the streets and how he overcame trauma and addiction to discover the truth about who he is.

If I can just make it to the next minute... then I might have a chance to live; I might have a chance to be something more than just a struggling crackhead.

From the Ashes is a remarkable memoir about hope and resilience, and a revelatory look into the life of a Métis-Cree man who refused to give up.

Abandoned by his parents as a toddler, Jesse Thistle briefly found himself in the foster-care system with his two brothers, cut off from all they had known. Eventually the children landed in the home of their paternal grandparents, but their tough-love attitudes meant conflicts became commonplace. And the ghost of Jesse’s drug-addicted father haunted the halls of the house and the memories of every family member. Struggling, Jesse succumbed to a self-destructive cycle of drug and alcohol addiction and petty crime, spending more than a decade on and off the streets, often homeless. One day, he finally realized he would die unless he turned his life around.

In this heartwarming and heartbreaking memoir, Jesse Thistle writes honestly and fearlessly about his painful experiences with abuse, uncovering the truth about his parents, and how he found his way back into the circle of his Indigenous culture and family through education.

An eloquent exploration of what it means to live in a world surrounded by prejudice and racism and to be cast adrift, From the Ashes is, in the end, about how love and support can help one find happiness despite the odds.

Reviews
From the Ashes hits you like a punch in the gut. It’s an unflinching, heartrending and beautifully written story of survival against seemingly impossible odds. But it’s also a book that should make you furious. Thistle paints a vivid portrait of a country seemingly incapable of doing right by Indigenous youth or by those struggling with homelessness, addiction and intergenerational trauma. That he survived to tell this story is truly a miracle. Still, one question haunts me after finishing this powerful and devastating book: How do we ensure that the next generation isn’t forced to navigate a broken system that takes their lives for granted and fails them at every turn? My greatest hope, then, is that From the Ashes will be the wakeup call Canada needs.” — IAN MOSBY, historian and author of Food Will Win the War

Educator Information
Caution: Deals with mature subject matter.

Additional Information
368 pages | 6.00" x 9.00"


Authentic Canadian Content
Authentic Indigenous Text
$24.99

Quantity:
Where the Dead Sit Talking
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous American; Native American;
Grade Levels: 10; 11; 12; University/College;

Set in rural Oklahoma during the late 1980s, Where the Dead Sit Talking is a startling, authentically voiced and lyrically written Native American coming-of-age story.

With his single mother in jail, Sequoyah, a fifteen-year-old Cherokee boy, is placed in foster care with the Troutt family. Literally and figuratively scarred by his mother’s years of substance abuse, Sequoyah keeps mostly to himself, living with his emotions pressed deep below the surface. At least until he meets seventeen-year-old Rosemary, a troubled artist who also lives with the family.

Sequoyah and Rosemary bond over their shared Native American background and tumultuous paths through the foster care system, but as Sequoyah’s feelings toward Rosemary deepen, the precariousness of their lives and the scars of their pasts threaten to undo them both.

Awards

  • A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2018
  • 2019 In the Margins Book Award Top Fiction Novel

Reviews
"An extraordinary book." —NPR's Code Switch

"A strange and powerful Native American Bildungsroman . . . this novel breathes with a dark, pulsing life of its own." —The Tulsa Voice

" This is a dark story that depicts the loneliness and pain of unwanted children and the foster care system where they end up . . . authentic and humane. " — The Oklahoman

"A powerful testament to one young Native American’s will to survive his lonely existence. Sequoyah’s community and experience is one we all need to know, and Hobson delivers the young man’s story in a deeply profound narrative." —KMUW Wichita Public Radio

"I was really struck by the intelligence of the book, as well as the significance of the story that he's telling, about what it's like to be a modern Indigenous person in this country, as a Native American, and to be in the foster care system. I was very struck by the plot of it—it's very well written, it's very propulsive, it's very readable for literary fiction, and I would recommend it heartily to book clubs." —Min Jin Lee, author of Pachinko

"Dreamlike prose . . . Where the Dead Sit Talking is an exploration of whether it’s possible for a person to heal when all the world sees is a battlefield of scars. " — San Diego CityBeat

"The latest from Hobson is a smart, dark novel of adolescence, death, and rural secrets set in late-1980s Oklahoma. Hobson’s narrative control is stunning, carrying the reader through scenes and timelines with verbal grace and sparse detail. Far more than a mere coming-of-age story, this is a remarkable and moving novel ." — Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

"A masterly tale of life and death, hopes and fears, secrets and lies." —Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review

"Hobson's eloquent prose and storyline will keep literary and general fiction readers turning pages. Its teen protagonists offer interest for young adults." —Library Journal

"[A] poignant and disturbing coming-of-age story . . . Hobson presents a painfully visceral drama about the overlooked lives of those struggling on the periphery of mainstream society." —Booklist

"Where the Dead Sit Talking is a sensitive and searching exploration of a youth forged in turbulence, in the endless aftermath of displacement and loss. Sequoyah’s voice is powerfully singular—both wounded and wounding—and this novel is a thrilling confirmation of Brandon Hobson’s immense gifts on the page.” —Laura van den Berg, author of Find Me

Additional Information
5.50" x 8.25"

Authentic Indigenous Text
$20.00

Quantity:
Talking to the Moon
Authors:
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Mi'kmaq; Métis;
Grade Levels: 5; 6; 7; 8; 9;

Deep roots. Last year in Social Studies, Miss Matattall got us to draw our family trees. Mine was the only one with no roots and just one full branch for me, plus a half branch for Moonbeam. Because maybe she's already dead, and that's why she didn't come back to get me.

Katie was four when her mother gave her up. Katie is a bright girl on the high end of the autism spectrum. The only memories she has are in her "Stack of Stories" notebook. When Katie spends the summer in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia with her foster mother, the connection she feels to this historic town makes Katie determined to find out about her past. Befriending locals like Aggie, an older woman, who shares a series of letters sent by a young girl who arrived in Lunenburg in 1752, and Aggie's sister, a reclusive eccentric who lives in the woods, help Katie to find clues to her own past. She can't help feeling that she has found her true roots.

Reviews
"It's hard to pinpoint the charm of this book. Partly it is Katie, herself, her precision and her colour sense, her need for her personal space; partly it is Catherine Marguerite's letters, or bits of them, that we get in fits and starts, finding out about how life was back when, and partly it is the mystery of Katie's background that the reader will probably figure out before Katie, herself, does. All in all, Talking to the Moon is a book with a mystery, an interesting protagonist, and good background material. It also has a moral: don't despair over information that you have only heard as an eavesdropper; you may have it, or its context, completely wrong! Highly Recommended!"— CM Magazine

"Katie, 11, doesn’t remember Moonbeam, the birth mother who left her the amethyst geode she treasures along with a message scrawled on a bookmark from a shop in Lunenburg, the picturesque, seaside town where Katie and her foster mother, Muzzy, are spending a month. Searching for Moonbeam, Katie feels a bond with another lonely girl, Catherine, whose French Protestant family immigrated here in the 1750s. Aggie, Catherine’s elderly descendant whom Katie helps out, shares her history and memorabilia, to which Aggie’s long-estranged sister, a reclusive carver, and two children with deep local roots add missing pieces. Along with Katie’s and Catherine’s, a third narrative thread concerns Catherine’s descendants; each touches on consequences of European settlement to the Mi’kmaw and, later, the Métis peoples. Katie’s likable; her self-aware narration clarifies her challenges. Her uniquely ordered world is believable, as are her bouts of anxiety and difficulty reading emotions. Bullied in Montreal, in Lunenburg Katie meets only understanding and kindness. No one’s offended when she avoids physical contact or finds her conceited when she (accurately) enumerates her abilities. This blend of a contemporary search for roots with finely detailed colonial history rewards patient readers, especially fans of historical fiction" - Kirkus Reviews

Educator Information
Recommended for ages 10-14. 

Themes/Keywords: Foster Care, Disabilities & Special Needs, Family, Bullying, Colonial History.

Additional Information
332 pages | 5.25" x 7.50"

 

Authentic Canadian Content
$12.95

Quantity:
Families Change
Authors:
Artists:
Format: Paperback
Grade Levels: Kindergarten; 1; 2; 3; 4; 5;

All families change over time. Sometimes a baby is born, or a grown-up gets married. And sometimes a child gets a new foster parent or a new adopted mom or dad. Children need to know that when this happens, it’s not their fault. They need to understand that they can remember and value their birth family and love their new family, too. Straightforward words and full-color illustrations offer hope, support, and coping skills for children facing or experiencing change. Includes resources and information for birth parents, foster parents, social workers, counselors, and teachers.

Educator Information
Interest Level: ages 4-10.

Additional Information
32 pages | 8.74" x 8.89"

$14.99

Quantity:
Looks Like Daylight: Voices of Indigenous Kids
Authors:
Format: Hardcover
Text Content Territories: Indigenous American; Indigenous Canadian;
Grade Levels: 7; 8; 9; 10; 11; 12; University/College;

After her critically acclaimed books of interviews with Afghan, Iraqi, Israeli and Palestinian children, Deborah Ellis turns her attention closer to home. For two years she traveled across the United States and Canada interviewing Native children. The result is a compelling collection of interviews with children aged nine to eighteen. They come from all over the continent, from Iqaluit to Texas, Haida Gwaai to North Carolina, and their stories run the gamut — some heartbreaking; many others full of pride and hope.

You’ll meet Tingo, who has spent most of his young life living in foster homes and motels, and is now thriving after becoming involved with a Native Friendship Center; Myleka and Tulane, young artists in Utah; Eagleson, who started drinking at age twelve but now continues his family tradition working as a carver in Seattle; Nena, whose Seminole ancestors remained behind in Florida during the Indian Removals, and who is heading to New Mexico as winner of her local science fair; Isabella, who defines herself more as Native than American; Destiny, with a family history of alcoholism and suicide, who is now a writer and powwow dancer.

Many of these children are living with the legacy of the residential schools; many have lived through the cycle of foster care. Many others have found something in their roots that sustains them, have found their place in the arts, the sciences, athletics. Like all kids, they want to find something that engages them; something they love.

Deborah briefly introduces each child and then steps back, letting the kids speak directly to the reader, talking about their daily lives, about the things that interest them, and about how being Native has affected who they are and how they see the world.

As one reviewer has pointed out, Deborah Ellis gives children a voice that they may not otherwise have the opportunity to express so readily in the mainstream media. The voices in this book are as frank and varied as the children themselves.

Educator Information
Recommended for ages 12 and up.

Curriculum Connections: English, Geography, Humanities and Social Studies, Indigenous Studies, Civics and Careers, History 

Authentic Canadian Content
$15.95

Quantity:
Only Drunks and Children Tell the Truth
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian;
Grade Levels: 11; 12; University/College;

Only Drunks and Children Tell the Truth is the emotional story of a woman’s struggle to acknowledge her birth family. Grace, a Native girl adopted by a White family, is asked by her birth sister to return to the Reserve for their mother’s funeral. Afraid of opening old wounds, Grace must find a place where the culture of her past can feed the truth of her present. Cast  of 2 women and 2 men.

Reviews
“…this play is a very tender, engaging look at two strangers learning to be sisters…witty one-liners and snappy dialogue has crafted likeable, real characters…brings a satisfying sense of closure to the struggles of Barb and Janice/Grace. It is a welcome ending, one that reflects hope for the future – not only for these two sisters , but also for all the others who have yet to find their way home.” - Cheryl Isaacs, Aboriginal Voices.

Awards

  • James Buller Award for Playwright of the Year, 1997
  • Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play, Small Theatre Division, 1996.

Educator Information
Grades 11-12 BC English First Peoples resource for the units Yes, there is Funny Stuff - Humour in First Peoples Literature and What Creates Family?

Additional Information
112 pages | 6.00" x 9.00"

Authentic Canadian Content
Authentic Indigenous Text
$22.00

Quantity:
April Raintree
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; Métis;
Grade Levels: 9; 10; 11; 12;

Very few of us have a proper understanding of the tragic and painful circumstances of native life in urban Canada. A truly black mark on the record of the Canadian government and Canadian society as a whole, these problems are dealt with by the astute and truthful writing of Beatrice Culleton. April Raintree is a work of autobiographical fiction that not only brings the reader into a genuine and difficult aspect of urban life, but also reveals Culleton`s significant talents.

Educator Information
Recommended Grades: 9-12.  This version of the novel was written specifically for students in grades 9-12 and does not contain the graphic scene that is contained in the original version, In Search of April Raintree.

Grades 10-12 English First Peoples resource.

Additional Information
196 pages | 5.50" x 8.50"

Authentic Canadian Content
Authentic Indigenous Text
$19.00

Quantity:
Keeper 'N Me
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg; Ojibway;
Grade Levels: 10; 11; 12;

A mystical novel reflecting a positive view of native life and philosophy, it's about a three-year-old who was taken from his home on an Ojibway reserve and placed in a series of foster homes. Join him as he travels back to the reserve and discovers his sense of place and of self.

When Garnet Raven was three years old, he was taken from his home on an Ojibway Indian reserve and placed in a series of foster homes. Having reached his mid-teens, he escapes at the first available opportunity, only to find himself cast adrift on the streets of the big city.

Having skirted the urban underbelly once too often by age 20, he finds himself thrown in jail. While there, he gets a surprise letter from his long-forgotten native family.

The sudden communication from his past spurs him to return to the reserve following his release from jail. Deciding to stay awhile, his life is changed completely as he comes to discover his sense of place, and of self. While on the reserve, Garnet is initiated into the ways of the Ojibway -- both ancient and modern -- by Keeper, a friend of his grandfather, and last fount of history about his people's ways.

By turns funny, poignant and mystical, Keeper 'n Me reflects a positive view of Native life and philosophy -- as well as casting fresh light on the redemptive power of one's community and traditions.

Educator Information
Grades 10-11 BC English First Peoples resource for the unit How Do We Define Ourselves? 

Additional Information
320 pages | 5.19" x 7.98" | This edition published in 2018

Authentic Canadian Content
Authentic Indigenous Text
$21.00

Quantity:
Sort By