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Indigenous Books for Kids & Teens

July 10 2021

This week's book suggestion list is quite the eclectic mix of genres and types to fit all ages and tastes. As always, all the titles can be found in our catalogue.


Picture Books

Elisapee and Her Baby Seagull by Nancy Mike

When Elisapee’s dad brings home a baby seagull, the little girl falls in love. She cares for the seagull until it’s big and strong, and eventually there comes a day where she must get ready to say goodbye. A story based on the author’s own experience as a child.

The Girl and the Wolf by Katherena Vermette

While picking berries with her mom, a little girl wanders too far into the woods and becomes lost. With the help of a wolf and her mother’s teachings, she comes to realize she has all the skills she needs to find the way home, she just needed someone to help her remember.

For Older Kids

Fatty Legs: A True Story by Christy Jordan-Fenton and Margaret Pokiak-Fenton

A memoir written for children about the experiences of an Inuvialuit Indian Residential School survivour. There is also a sequel, A Stranger at Home. If you are looking to talk to a younger child about Indian Residential Schools, the author has written a picture book on the topic called When I Was Eight.

The Barren Grounds by David Robertson

When two Indigenous boys at a foster home in Winnipeg find a portal to another world, they must work together with new friends to save the community of Misewa from starvation… and perhaps find themselves along the way.

For Teens

Those Who Run in the Sky by Aviaq Johnson

During a strange snowstorm, a young Inuk shaman named Pitu finds himself stranded on sea ice without his dog sled team or any weapon for protection. It doesn't take long for him to realize he's found himself trapped in the spirit world, a land not for the faint of heart to put it mildly. 

Finalist of the 2017 Governor General’s Awards for Young People’s Literature. 

There is a sequel (Those Who Dwell Below) which we also have. 

Johnson also has a few picture books we highly recommend, such as What’s My Superpower?, and a horror anthology for adults that’s well worth a read (Taaqtumi: An Anthology of Arctic Horror Stories).

This Place: 150 Years Retold by Kateri Akiwenzie-Damm et al.

A graphic novel anthology of ten stories about the history of Canada from the point of view of Indigenous people.

By Alice Flecha (Volunteer Blogger)

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