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Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Readings for National Indigenous Peoples' Day

Today is National Indigenous Peoples' Day in Canada so I thought I’d focus on the Aboriginal Literature Award.

The winner is Carol Rose Daniels for her debut novel Bearskin Diary.  
Taken from the arms of her mother as soon as she was born, Sandy was 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 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.

The $5,000 prize, presented jointly by the First Nations Communities READ program and Periodical Marketers of Canada , recognizes works of outstanding Indigenous literature.

The 2015 novel has also been selected for the First Nation Communities READ program for 2017-2018.

CBC Books has great suggestions for other books by Indigenous writers.  See for recommendations of up-and-coming indigenous writers by established Canadian writers and for recommendations of indigenous books by readers.  Thanks CBC Books!