Surviving the City written by Tasha Spillett, Nehiyaw (Cree) and Trinidadian, with effective illustrations from Metis artist Natasha Donovan brings the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls to intermediate and secondary level readers. This 56-page graphic novel in the Debwe Series from Highwater Press presents the story of two teen girls attending an urban high school in Winnipeg.
Awasis and the World-Famous Bannock is a charming picture book by the Swan River First Nation author Dallas Hunt. Added to the mix of this fun text are the colourful illustrations from Metis media artist and filmmaker Amanda Strong. The Cree author mixes key Cree vocabulary within this story about a young girl who is delivering her Kohkum’s (grandmother’s” bannock to a relative. But on her way Awasis allows the bread to fall into a stream. What should the little girl do? With the help of her animal friends the girl collects all the ingredients for making bannock.
Nimoshom and His Bus is a 24-page picture book written by Cree-Ojibwe author Penny Thomas with captivating pastel watercolour illustrations by Karen Hibbard for Highwater Books. In this gentle story young student readers meet a kind Elder Nimoshom (my grandfather) bus driver. He drives the yellow school bus for First Nations students. Every school day he greets the riders with the greeting, Tansi meaning hello. In fact the author introduces 13 Swampy Cree terms with meaning easily woven into the text. A glossary and pronunciation guide is provided at the end of the book.
Strangers is the young adult novel by David A. Robertson and is the first volume in the author's planned series, The Reckoner. Best known for his graphic novels and children's book, this Norway House Cree author creates a contemporary novel with mystery elements as we as themes of belonging, identity, loss and a trickster Coyote.
Pemmican Wars is volume 1 of the new graphic novel series, A Girl Called Echo from Highwater Press. Written by Katherena Vermette and illustrated by Scott Henderson. This young adult graphic novel is written with minimal text making this historical time travel story mixes two time periods as seen through the life story of a young teen named Echo. Echo does not live with her mother and attends a new school where she finds solace in the library. In history class Echo hears the story about the little known Pemmican Wars. Suddenly Echo finds herself transported to this historic event.
First Starters by first-time graphic novel author Jen Storm published in the Debwe Series by Highwater Press. Illustrated in colour by Scott Henderson, this young adult graphic novel tells a story that stresses the importance of always being truthful. Teens from the Agamiing Reserve and the local town find themselves in serious trouble after a thoughtless prank ends with the reserve's gas bar burned down. After finding an old flare gun in his grandmother's garage, one teen proposes Ron and Ben go to the reserve's dump and shoot the flare gun.