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Canadian Indigenous Fiction

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A comprehensive list of Canadian Indigenous fiction.

McBride, Karen .
Crow Winter

Nanabush. A name that has a certain weight on the tongue--a taste. Like lit sage in a windowless room or aluminum foil on a metal filling. Trickster. Storyteller. Shape-shifter. An ancient troublemaker with the power to do great things, only he doesn't want to put in the work. Since coming home to Spirit Bear Point First Nation, Hazel Ellis has been dreaming of an old crow. He tells her he's here to help her, save her. From what, exactly? Sure, her dad's been dead for almost two years and she hasn't quite reconciled that grief, but is that worth the time of an Algonquin demigod? Soon Hazel learns that there's more at play than just her own sadness and doubt. The quarry that's been lying unsullied for over a century on her father's property is stirring the old magic that crosses the boundaries between this world and the next. With the aid of Nanabush, Hazel must unravel a web of deceit that, if left untouched, could destroy her family and her home on both sides of the Medicine Wheel.

Dumont, Dawn
Glass beads

These short stories interconnect the friendships of four First Nations people -- Everett Kaiswatim, Nellie Gordon, Julie Papequash, and Nathan (Taz) Mosquito -- as the collection evolves over two decades against the cultural, political, and historical backdrop of the 90s and early 2000s. These young people are among the first of their families to live off the reserve for most of their adult lives, and must adapt and evolve.

Whitehead, Joshua
Jonny Appleseed

Jonny Appleseed, a young Two-Spirit/Indigiqueer, has to return to the his former life when he attends the funeral of his stepfather.

Tagaq
Split tooth

A girl grows up in Nunavut in the 1970s. She knows joy and love. She knows boredom and bullying. She knows the tedium of the everyday and the seductive energy of the animal world. She knows the ravages of alcohol and violence. When she becomes pregnant, she must navigate all this. Veering between the grittiest features of a small arctic town, the electrifying proximity of the animal world and the ravishing world of myth, Tanya Tagaq explores a world where the distinctions between good and evil, animal and human, real and imagined lose their meaning, but the guiding power of love remains.

Bartleman, James
A matter of conscience

When Brenda, an Indigenous woman, meets and falls for Greg, a man claiming to be Métis, she has no way of knowing that he's lying about his heritage - and is doing so as a means of dealing with his involvement in the murder of a residential school student as a teenager. Includes a section of documents for background reading.

Orange, Tommy
There there

Jacquie Red Feather is newly sober and trying to make it back to the family she left behind in shame. Dene Oxendene is pulling his life together after his uncle's death and has come to work at the powwow to honour his uncle's memory. Opal Viola Victoria Bear Shield has come to watch her nephew Orvil Red Feather, who has taught himself traditional Indian dance through YouTube videos and has come to the powwow to dance in public for the very first time. There will be glorious communion, and a spectacle of sacred tradition and pageantry. And there will be sacrifice, and heroism, and unspeakable loss.

Dimaline, Cherie
The marrow thieves

Frenchie and his companions struggle to survive after the world is nearly destroyed by global warming and the Indigenous people of North America become hunted once it's discovered that they are the only people who have retained the ability to dream and that their bone marrow can provide a cure.

Florence, Melanie.
He who dreams

When John discovers dancing, he finds himself facing ridicule from his soccer teammates and hostility from the dancers at the cultural center. To dance at the Pow Wow, he must learn to balance his responsibilities, confront his fears and embrace both the Irish and the Cree sides of his heritage.

Daniels, Carol
Bearskin diary

Taken from the arms of her mother as soon as she was born, 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, Sandy emerges strong--finding her way by embracing the First Nations culture.

Robinson, Eden.
Son of a trickster

Jared is only sixteen but feels like he is the one who must stabilize his family's life, even look out for his elderly neighbours. But he struggles to keep everything afloat...and sometimes he blacks out. And he puzzles over why his maternal grandmother has never liked him, why she says he's the son of a trickster, that he isn't human. Mind you, ravens speak to him--even when he's not stoned. You think you know Jared, but you don't.

Vermette, Katherena
The break

When a Métis woman sees a possible crime she telephones the police. Told from the perspectives of various people connected to this violence in a Metis community, we hear their stories leading up to that fateful night.

Lemire, Jeff.
Secret path

In Secret Path, Gord Downie's lyrics and Jeff Lemire's illustrations tell the story of twelve-year-old Chanie "Charlie" Wenjack, who died on October 22, 1966, after running away from the Cecilia Jeffrey Indian Residential School and attempting to make his way back to his home, more than 600 km away.

Taylor, Drew Hayden
Take us to your chief

The nine stories in this collection span all traditional topics of science fiction--from peaceful aliens to hostile invaders; from space travel to time travel; from government conspiracies to connections across generations.

Kinew, Wab
The reason you walk

When his father was given a diagnosis of terminal cancer, Winnipeg broadcaster and musician Wab Kinew decided to spend a year reconnecting with the accomplished but distant aboriginal man who'd raised him. Born to an Anishinaabe father and a non-native mother, he has a foot in both cultures. He is a Sundancer, an academic, a former rapper, a hereditary chief, and an urban activist. Kinew writes affectingly of his own struggles in his twenties to find the right path, eventually giving up a self-destructive lifestyle to passionately pursue music and martial arts. From his unique vantage point, he offers an inside view of what it means to be an educated aboriginal living in a country that is just beginning to wake up to its aboriginal history and living presence.

Lindberg, Tracey
Birdie

Bernice Meetoos, a Cree woman, leaves her home in Northern Alberta to Gibsons, BC. She tries to recover from wounds of the past and build a new life.

LaBoucane-Benson, Patti
The outside circle

Pete, a young Aboriginal gang member, is sent to jail for killing his mother's boyfriend during a fight. While there, he realizes that he has become a negative influence on his younger brother and decides to turn his life around with the help of traditional Aboriginal healing circles and ceremonies.

King, Thomas
The back of the turtle

Gabriel returns to Smoke River, the reserve where his mother grew up and to which she returned with Gabriels sister. The reserve is deserted after an environmental disaster killed the population, including Gabriels family and the local wildlife. Gabriel, a brilliant scientist working for DowSanto, created GreenSweep and indirectly led to the crisis. Now he has come to see the damage and to kill himself in the sea. But as he prepares to let the water take him, he sees a young girl in the waves. Plunging in, he saves her and soon is saving others. Who are these people with their long black hair and almond eyes who have fallen from the sky?

Maracle, Lee
Celia's song

Celia's vision of the past during a weather disturbance becomes a reality when her great-niece is horribly abused.

Wagamese, Richard.
Medicine walk

Set in the dramatic landscape of the BC Interior, 16 year-old Franklin Starlight is called to visit his father, Eldon, a man he barely knows. The rare moments they have shared trouble Frank, but, he answers the call, a son's duty to a father. He finds Eldon dying of liver failure after years of heavy drinking. Eldon asks his son to take him into the mountains, so he may be buried in the traditional Ojibway manner.

Boyden, Joseph
The orenda

An epic story of first contact between radically different worlds, steeped in the natural beauty and brutality of our country's formative years.