Tilly and the Crazy Eights by award-winning author Monique Gray Smith begins with eight Elders deciding to travel to the Gathering of Nations Pow Wow in Albuquerque, each of them marking off an item on their “bucket lists” along the way – dancing at the powwow, visiting Las Vegas, spreading a sister’s ashes among the red rocks of Sedona. With the help of their community, they secure a small bus and the funds for travel but still need a driver, which is where Tilly comes in. Tilly and the Crazy Eights each choose a stop to make along the way—somewhere they’ve always wanted to go or something they’ve wanted to experience. This takes them on a route to Las Vegas and Sedona, with a final goal of reaching the Redwood Forest. Each stop becomes the inspiration for secrets and stories to be revealed. The trip proves to be powerful medicine as they laugh, heal, argue, and reveal hopes and dreams along the way. With friendships forged, love found, hearts broken and mended, Tilly and the Crazy Eights feel ready for anything by the time their bus rolls to a stop in New Mexico. The Crazy Eights are members of a community group who get together for their Stitch ‘n Bitch sessions as they call their craft group. It is here that the plan to take a special road trip begins. Each of the Elders brings their own backgrounds and dreams on the trip as they form an extended family with issues such as divorce, homosexuality, abuse in the residential schools during childhood, infidelity, illness, getting in touch with a person's faith, the grand nature of the southwest, and fulfilling a lifelong dream to dance at the largest powwow. The story is filled with moving passages and includes doses of humour with the ever-present tears. An ideal novel about healing and reconciliation. Highly recommended.
Selected title for the First Nation Communities READ YA/Adult Category 2019/2020