• Anton Treuer's "Everything You Wanted to Know about Indians But Were Afraid to Ask.

  • "The Mishomis Book: The Voice of the Ojibway" by Edward Benton-Banai" 

  • "Sacred Tree: Reflections on Native American Spirituality" by Judie Bopp, Michael Bopp, Lee Brown and Phil Lane Jr.

  • "Me Funny" by Drew Hayden Taylor

  • "The Birchbark House" by Louise Erdrich

  • This book is the first of four in Erdrich's series for children. "There's so much cultural knowledge in here, and you fall in love with the main character," Wood-Krueger said. "It sucks you in, and it's sort of a cultural primary school where you can follow along and learn all the things that happen in a cyclical way."

  • "Plague of Doves" by Louise Erdrich

  • "In Search of April Raintree" by Beatrice Culleton Mosionier

  • The Cork O'Connor series by William Kent Krueger

  • "Saánii Dahataal" by Luci Tapahonso

  • "How I Became a Ghost" by Tim Tingle

  • "Code Talker: The First and Only Memoir By One of the Original Navajo Code Talkers of WWII" by Chester Nez and Judith Schiess Avila

  • "Fatty Legs" and "A Stranger at Home" by Christy Jordan-Fenton and Margaret Pokiak-Fenton

  • "All the Way: My Life on Ice" by Jordin Tootoo

  • "One Native Life" by Richard Wagamese

  • "A Quality of Light" by Richard Wagamese

  • "The Night Wanderer" by Drew Hayden Taylor

  • "Sweetest Kulu" by Celina Kalluk

  • "The Outside Circle" by Patti Laboucane-Benson

  • "The Giving Tree" by Leah Marie Dorion

  • "Lightfinder" by Aaron Maquette

  • "The Inconvenient Indian: A Curious Account of Native People in North America" by Thomas King

  • "A Coyote Columbus Story" by Thomas King

  • "The Gift is in the Making: Anishinaabeg Stories" by Leanne Simpson

  • "My Name is Not Easy" by Debby Dahl Edwardson

  • "Rez Life" by David Treuer

  • "Prudence" by David Treuer

  • "Motorcycles & Sweetgrass" by Drew Hayden Taylor

  • "Talking Sky, Ojibwe Constellations as a Reflection of Life on the Land" by Carl Gawboy and Ron Morton

  • "The Sacred Hoop, Recovering the Feminine in American Indian Traditions" by Paula Gunn Allen

  • "Three Day Road" by Joseph Boyden

  • "Custer Died for Your Sins" by Vine Deloria

  • "The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fight in Heaven" by Sherman Alexie

  • "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian" by Sherman Alexie

  • Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants, Robin Wall Kimmerer

    • Drawing on her life as an indigenous scientist, a mother, and a woman, Kimmerer shows how other living beings offer us gifts and lessons, even if we’ve forgotten how to hear their voices.

 

  • Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee: An Indian History of the American West, Dee Brown

    • Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee is Dee Brown's classic, eloquent, meticulously documented account of the systematic destruction of the American Indian during the second half of the nineteenth century. A national bestseller in hardcover for more than a year after its initial publication, it has sold over four million copies in multiple editions and has been translated into seventeen languages. Using council records, autobiographies, and firsthand descriptions, Brown allows great chiefs and warriors of the Dakota, Ute, Sioux, Cheyenne, and other tribes to tell us in their own words of the series of battles, massacres, and broken treaties that finally left them and their people demoralized and decimated. A unique and disturbing narrative told with force and clarity, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee changed forever our vision of how the West was won, and lost. It tells a story that should not be forgotten, and so must be retold from time to time.

 

  • Navajos Wear Nikes: A Reservation Life, Jim Kristofic

    • Just before starting second grade, Jim Kristofic moved from Pittsburgh across the country to Ganado, Arizona, when his mother took a job at a hospital on the Navajo Reservation. Navajos Wear Nikes reveals the complexity of modern life on the Navajo Reservation, a world where Anglo and Navajo coexisted in a tenuous truce. After the births of his Navajo half-siblings, Jim and his family moved off the Reservation to an Arizona border town where they struggled to readapt to an Anglo world that no longer felt like home. With tales of gangs and skinwalkers, an Indian Boy Scout troop, a fanatical Sunday school teacher, and the author's own experience of sincere friendships that lead to ho?zho? (beautiful harmony), Kristofic's memoir is an honest portrait of growing up on--and growing to love--the Reservation.

 

  • Ceremony, Leslie Marmon Silko

    • Leslie Marmon Silko's sublime Ceremony is almost universally considered one of the finest novels ever written by an American Indian. It is the poetic, dreamlike tale of Tayo, a mixed-blood Laguna Pueblo and veteran of World War II. Tormented by shell shock and haunted by memories of his cousin who died in the war, Tayo struggles on his impoverished reservation. After turning to alcohol to ease his pain, he strives for a better understanding of who he is.

 

  • Mankiller: a Chief and Her People, Wilma Mankiller

 

  • Fifty Miles from Tomorrow: A Memoir of Alaska and the Real People, William L. Iggiagruk Hensley

    • It was just fifty years ago that the territory of Alaska officially became the state of Alaska. But no matter who has staked their claim to the land, it has always had a way of enveloping souls in its vast, icy embrace. 
      For William L. Iggiagruk Hensley, Alaska has been his home, his identity, and his cause. Born on the shores of Kotzebue Sound, twenty-nine miles north of the Arctic Circle, he was raised to live the traditional, seminomadic life that his Iñupiaq ancestors had lived for thousands of years. It was a life of cold and of constant effort, but Hensley’s people also reaped the bounty that nature provided. In Fifty Miles from Tomorrow, Hensley offers us the rare chance to immerse ourselves in a firsthand account of growing up Native Alaskan. There have been books written about Alaska, but they’ve been written by Outsiders, settlers. Hensley’s memoir of life on the tundra offers an entirely new perspective, and his stories are captivating, as is his account of his devotion to the Alaska Native land claims movement.

 

  • X-Marks: Native Signatures of Assent (Indigenous Americas), Scott Richard Lyons

    • In X-Marks, Scott Richard Lyons explores the complexity of contemporary Indian identity and current debates among Indians about traditionalism, nationalism, and tribalism. Employing the x-mark as a metaphor for what he calls the “Indian assent to the new,” Lyons offers a valuable alternative to both imperialist concepts of assimilation and nativist notions of resistance, calling into question the binary oppositions produced during the age of imperialism and maintaining that indigeneity is something that people do, not what they are. Drawing on his personal experiences and family history on the Leech Lake Ojibwe Reservation in northern Minnesota, discourses embedded in Ojibwemowin (the Ojibwe language), and disagreements about Indian identity within Native American studies, Lyons contends that Indians should be able to choose nontraditional ways of living, thinking, and being without fear of being condemned as inauthentic. Arguing for a greater recognition of the diversity of Native America, X-Marks analyzes ongoing controversies about Indian identity, addresses the issue of culture and its use and misuse by essentialists, and considers the implications of the idea of an Indian nation. At once intellectually rigorous and deeply personal, X-Marks holds that indigenous peoples can operate in modern times while simultaneously honoring and defending their communities, practices, and values.

 

  • From a Native Daughter: Colonialism and Sovereignty in Hawaii, Haunani-Kay Trask

    • In this impassioned and provocative collection of 17 essays, Trask, a well-known activist, argues the case of indigenous Hawaiians, persons of Polynesian descent, who have been overwhelmed by the dominant culture. She puts the native Hawaiian experience in its historical context as one of colonialism, initiated by military invasion and sustained through military and economic occupation and oppression. She also touches on the environmental devastation wrought by development on a beautiful and fragile ecosystem, and on the "cultural prostitution" that occurs when native traditions become mere local color for swarms of tourists. Trask examines the claims of Hawaiians to human rights and self-determination before international tribunals. This issue is given a larger frame of reference by a similar discussion of other Pacific island nations. The author convincingly documents continued racism directed at Hawaii's native inhabitants, including at the University of Hawaii where she teaches Hawaiian studies. Uncompromising yet never shrill, this volume is a welcome addition to the growing body of literature on indigenism, the movement for the rights of native people around the world.

 

  • Skins, Adrian Louis

    • The title of this accomplished first novel by Native American poet Louis is short for "redskins," a common term reservation Indians use for themselves. Set on the Pine Ridge Reservation (S.D.) where the author makes his home, the book tells the story of Rudy Yellow Shirt. Rudy's job, as a tribal policeman, is to protect the Oglala that inhabit the "rez" from themselves, and he's reaching the end of his tether. His marriage has fallen apart, the medicine he takes for high blood pressure has ruined his sex life and his rowdy, alcoholic brother Mogie is constantly in trouble with the law. Rudy's fed up with the spousal beatings, the alcohol and the drugs he confronts in his daily routine ("all major crimes" are the province of the FBI). But everything changes when a knock on the noggin suffered while chasing a suspect causes unusual side effects for the weary cop. First, his sexual prowess returns with more vigor than he bargained for. It also brings out Rudy's alter ego, the "Avenging Warrior," a vigilante bent on dispensing rough justice beyond the bounds of the law. First, he knee-caps a couple of punks who brutally sodomized and murdered a young boy. Then he moves on to torching a liquor store on the reservation border. The question then becomes whether Rudy will be able to achieve the reintegration of self and the comity in personal relations that elude much of Indian society. Employing an incisive blend of satire, fantasy and grim realism, and aided by a good eye for detail and an ear for natural dialogue, Louis presents a picture of contemporary Native American life that is often as funny and warm as it is disturbing.​

  • The Red-Headed Hawaiian: The Inspiring Story About a Local Boy from Rural Hawaii Who Makes Good, Puana Rudy and Chris McKinney

    • In a departure from his typical fictional portrayal of a Hawaii in turmoil, Chris McKinney has collaborated with his childhood friend, Dr. Rudy Puana, to write a local-boy-does-good story for younger readers. It's a move that may have die-hard McKinney fans a little perplexed, as he turns away from the grittiness of the Islands to adopt a more inspirational tone. Still, The Red-headed Hawaiian, released last month by Mutual Publishing, seeks to challenge a few ingrained local attitudes, including notions of what it means to be tough, and give permission to Hawaii's youth to dream for better lives than their parents had.--Honolulu Magazine

 

  • 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus, Charles C. Mann

    • Contrary to what so many Americans learn in school, the pre-Columbian Indians were not sparsely settled in a pristine wilderness; rather, there were huge numbers of Indians who actively molded and influenced the land around them. The astonishing Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan had running water and immaculately clean streets, and was larger than any contemporary European city. Mexican cultures created corn in a specialized breeding process that it has been called man’s first feat of genetic engineering. Indeed, Indians were not living lightly on the land but were landscaping and manipulating their world in ways that we are only now beginning to understand. Challenging and surprising, this a transformative new look at a rich and fascinating world we only thought we knew.

 

  • Mankiller: A Chief and Her People, Wilma Mankiller and Michael Wallis

    • The first female chief of a large tribe, the Cherokee Nation in Tahlequah, tells her life story, from her childhood on Mankiller Flats to her struggle to lead her people into a new century.

 

  • Rez Life, David Treuer

    • With authoritative research and reportage, Treuer illuminates misunderstood contemporary issues like sovereignty, treaty rights, and natural-resource conservation. He traces the convoluted waves of public policy that have deracinated, disenfranchised, and exploited Native Americans, exposing the tension and conflict that has marked the historical relationship between the United States government and the Native American population. Through the eyes of students, teachers, government administrators, lawyers, and tribal court judges, he shows how casinos, tribal government, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs have transformed the landscape of Native American life.A member of the Ojibwe of northern Minnesota, Treuer grew up on the Leech Lake Reservation, but was educated in "mainstream" America. Treuer traverses the boundaries of American and Indian identity as he explores crime and poverty, casinos and wealth, and the preservation of his native language and culture. Rez Life is a strikingly original work of history and reportage, a must read for anyone interested in the Native American story.

 

  • Beyond the Asterisk: Understanding Native Students in Higher Education, Heather Shotton, S. Lowe, S. Waterman, J.Garland

    • “Within this important and long overdue addition to the literature, higher education faculty and administrators have important new resources for helping shift the landscape of Native American college student experiences toward success. The importance of this particular new text cannot be understated. It has been conceived, written, and edited by Native American higher education leaders and those who have made Native students a priority in their practice. My hope is that this book becomes a catalyst for new higher education practices that lead to direct, and increased support for, Native Americans and others who are vigorously working to remove the Native American asterisk from research and practice. This text also signals a renewed call-to-action for increasing the representation of Native students, faculty, and staff on our campuses”?John Garland

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