Borders by Thomas King and Natasha Donovan
HarperCollins Publishers Ltd
Publication Date: September 7, 2021
Six years after his older sister left the reserve to make a new life in Salt Lake City, a boy and his mom pack their car to drive south across the border to visit her. When his mom declares that they are not American or Canadian, but Blackfoot, they are denied entry and turn back toward home, only to face the same problem at the Canadian border. The two are then trapped in physical and legal limbo between Sweetgrass, Montana and Coutts, Alberta with dwindling food and supplies.
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A Girl Called Echo, v.4: Road Allowance Era by Katherena Vermette, Scott B. Henderson, and Donovan Yaciuk
Publication Date: April 27, 2021
Echo, a Métis teenager, embarks on one more trip to the past of her family and heritage. Her mother has returned, and she shares the family tree when Echo realizes she has been seeing her family members in the trips to the past. Echo travels first to 1885 during the trial and execution of Louis Riel after the Northwest Resistance, and she sees how the Métis’ rights to land are not honored by the Canadian government. She continues to travel to several parts of the past to meet her family members. She sees promises reneged on, and Echo wonders what that means for the future. As she heads toward graduation, Echo considers what she can do to stay strong and keep on fighting injustice with support from family and friends.
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Surviving the City, vol. 2: From the Roots Up by Tasha Spillett and Natasha Donovan
Publication Date: October 27, 2020
Miikwan and Dez’s story continues in this second volume of The Debwe Series. After her grandmother passes, Dez struggles with her loss and grief. She lives in a group home, but feels lonely and out of place. Dez’s romantic relationship with Kacey grows, but Dez hesitates to make it public. Meanwhile, Miikwan develops her own romance with new student Kiel, who is also dealing with a loss. The four attend an after-school gathering called Mino Bimaadiziwin, but when Dez tries to sit at the drum with the other young men, she is initially denied until an elder, Geraldine, intervenes. Miikwan also defends Dez, and Dez finally reveals her identity as a Two-Spirit person. The four students convince Geraldine that the old protocols are exclusionary and antithetical to Mino Bimaadiziwin or “the good life,” and Riel’s Auntie Alex is invited to share about Two-Spirit teachings. Afterward, everyone, no matter their gender or sexuality, is welcomed back into the circle.
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Surviving the City, vol. 1 by Tasha Spillett and Natasha Donovan
Publication Date: November 30, 2018
Miikwan and Dez are best friends, each grappling with family issues; Miikwan’s mom is missing and Dez’s beloved grandmother is ill. When Dez disappears one night, Miikwan fears that she has become one of the murdered and missing Indigenous women of their community. Miikwan, protected by the spirits of missing women, participates in a march to honor the stolen sisters of their community. There, Miikwan finally finds Dez, safe.
Continue reading Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2020) Nominees Round Up, July 4 Edition