Even More Staff Picks

When My Brother Was an Aztec

"I write hungry sentences," Natalie Diaz once explained in an interview, "because they want more and more lyricism and imagery to satisfy them." This debut collection is a fast-paced tour of Mojave life and family narrative: A sister fights for or against a brother on meth, and everyone from Antigone, Houdini, Huitzilopochtli, and Jesus is invoked and invited to hash it out. These darkly humorous poems illuminate far corners of the heart, revealing teeth, tails, and more than a few dreams.

When My Brother Was an Aztec

Natalie Diaz
Adult Nonfiction - 811.6 Dia

"I write hungry sentences," Natalie Diaz once explained in an interview, "because they want more and more lyricism and imagery to satisfy them." This debut collection is a fast-paced tour of Mojave life and family narrative: A sister fights for or against a brother on meth, and everyone from Antigone, Houdini, Huitzilopochtli, and Jesus is invoked and invited to hash it out. These darkly humorous poems illuminate far corners of the heart, revealing teeth, tails, and more than a few dreams.


Nonfiction by Native American Authors

The Way to Rainy Mountain

The stories in The Way to Rainy Mountain are told in three voices. The first voice is the voice of my father, the ancestral voice, and the voice of the Kiowa oral tradition. The second is the voice of historical commentary. And the third is that of personal reminiscence, my own voice. There is a turning and returning of myth, history, and memoir throughout, a narrative wheel that is as sacred as language itself.

The Way to Rainy Mountain

N. Scott Momaday
Adult Nonfiction - 299.78 Mom

The stories in The Way to Rainy Mountain are told in three voices. The first voice is the voice of my father, the ancestral voice, and the voice of the Kiowa oral tradition. The second is the voice of historical commentary. And the third is that of personal reminiscence, my own voice. There is a turning and returning of myth, history, and memoir throughout, a narrative wheel that is as sacred as language itself.


Nonfiction by Native American Authors

The Broken Cord

This book is the inspiring story of a family confronted with a problem with no known solution and the first book for the general reader that describes the tragedy and lifelong blight of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. In 1971, Michael Dorris became one of the first unmarried men in the United States to legally adopt a very young child, and affectionate Sioux Indian he named Adam. At that time, little was revealed about Adam's past except that his biological mother died of alcohol poisoning.

The Broken Cord

Michael Dorris
Adult Nonfiction - 362.1968 Dor

This book is the inspiring story of a family confronted with a problem with no known solution and the first book for the general reader that describes the tragedy and lifelong blight of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. In 1971, Michael Dorris became one of the first unmarried men in the United States to legally adopt a very young child, and affectionate Sioux Indian he named Adam. At that time, little was revealed about Adam's past except that his biological mother died of alcohol poisoning. During the course of the next two decades, the growing Dorris family (through the single-parent adoption of two more infants, and the 1981 marriage to writer Louise Erdrich, which produced three more children) went through a time of alarming discovery as the new information about the genetic and cultural causes of FAS became apparent and paralleled the family's battle to solve their oldest son's developing health and learning problems. Author Michael Dorris explains how traditions weave through the lives of many Native Americans and how alcoholism and despair have shattered so many lives. He also chronicles the effects of fetal alcohol syndrome on their adopted son and on the Native American community as a whole.


Nonfiction by Native American Authors

Abandon Me: Memoirs

In her critically acclaimed memoir, Whip Smart, Melissa Febos laid bare the intimate world of the professional dominatrix, turning an honest examination of her life into a lyrical study of power, desire, and fulfillment. In her dazzling Abandon Me, Febos captures the intense bonds of love and the need for connection -- with family, lovers, and oneself. First, her birth father, who left her with only an inheritance of addiction and Native American blood, its meaning a mystery.

Abandon Me: Memoirs

Melissa Febos
Adult Nonfiction - 800.92 Febos Feb

In her critically acclaimed memoir, Whip Smart, Melissa Febos laid bare the intimate world of the professional dominatrix, turning an honest examination of her life into a lyrical study of power, desire, and fulfillment. In her dazzling Abandon Me, Febos captures the intense bonds of love and the need for connection -- with family, lovers, and oneself. First, her birth father, who left her with only an inheritance of addiction and Native American blood, its meaning a mystery. As Febos tentatively reconnects, she sees how both these lineages manifest in her own life, marked by compulsion and an instinct for self-erasure. Meanwhile, she remains closely tied to the sea captain who raised her, his parenting ardent but intermittent as his work took him away for months at a time. Woven throughout is the hypnotic story of an all-consuming, long-distance love affair with a woman, marked equally by worship and withdrawal. In visceral, erotic prose, Febos captures their mutual abandonment to passion and obsession -- and the terror and exhilaration of losing herself in another. At once a fearlessly vulnerable memoir and an incisive investigation of art, love, and identity, Abandon Me draws on childhood stories, religion, psychology, mythology, popular culture, and the intimacies of one writer's life to reveal intellectual and emotional truths that feel startlingly universal.


Nonfiction by Native American Authors

Lakota Woman

Mary Brave Bird grew up fatherless in a one-room cabin, without running water or electricity, on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota. Rebelling against the aimless drinking, punishing missionary school, narrow strictures for women, and violence and hopeless of reservation life, she joined the new movement of tribal pride sweeping Native American communities in the sixties and seventies. Mary eventually married Leonard Crow Dog, the American Indian Movement's chief medicine man, who revived the sacred but outlawed Ghost Dance.

Lakota Woman

Mary Brave Bird
Adult Nonfiction - 921 Brave Bird Bra

Mary Brave Bird grew up fatherless in a one-room cabin, without running water or electricity, on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota. Rebelling against the aimless drinking, punishing missionary school, narrow strictures for women, and violence and hopeless of reservation life, she joined the new movement of tribal pride sweeping Native American communities in the sixties and seventies. Mary eventually married Leonard Crow Dog, the American Indian Movement's chief medicine man, who revived the sacred but outlawed Ghost Dance.


Nonfiction by Native American Authors

Dreaming in Indian: Contemporary Native American Voices

Anthology of art and writings from some of the most groundbreaking Native artists working in North America today. Emerging and established Native artists, including acclaimed author Joseph Boyden, renowned visual artist Bunky Echo Hawk, and stand-up comedian Ryan McMahon, contribute thoughtful and heartfelt pieces on their experiences growing up Indigenous, expressing them through such mediums as art, food, the written word, sport, dance, and fashion. Renowned chef Aaron Bear Robe explains how he introduces restaurant customers to his culture by reinventing traditional dishes.

Dreaming in Indian: Contemporary Native American Voices

Lisa Charleyboy, Mary Beth Leatherdale
Adult Nonfiction - 704.0397 Dre

Anthology of art and writings from some of the most groundbreaking Native artists working in North America today. Emerging and established Native artists, including acclaimed author Joseph Boyden, renowned visual artist Bunky Echo Hawk, and stand-up comedian Ryan McMahon, contribute thoughtful and heartfelt pieces on their experiences growing up Indigenous, expressing them through such mediums as art, food, the written word, sport, dance, and fashion. Renowned chef Aaron Bear Robe explains how he introduces restaurant customers to his culture by reinventing traditional dishes. And in a dramatic photo spread, model Ashley Callingbull and photographer Thosh Collins reappropriate the trend of wearing 'Native' clothing. Whether addressing the effects of residential schools, calling out bullies through personal manifestos, or simply citing hopes for the future, Dreaming In Indian refuses to shy away from difficult topics.


Nonfiction by Native American Authors

The Turquoise Ledge

Leslie Marmon Silko's new book, her first in ten years, combines memoir with family history and reflections on the creatures and beings that command her attention and inform her vision of the world, taking readers along on her daily walks through the arroyos and ledges of the Sonoran desert in Arizona.

The Turquoise Ledge

Leslie Silko
Adult Nonfiction - 800.92 Silko Sil

Leslie Marmon Silko's new book, her first in ten years, combines memoir with family history and reflections on the creatures and beings that command her attention and inform her vision of the world, taking readers along on her daily walks through the arroyos and ledges of the Sonoran desert in Arizona. Silko weaves tales from her family's past into her observations, using the turquoise stones she finds on the walks to unite the strands of her stories, while the beauty and symbolism of the landscape around her, and of the snakes, birds, dogs, and other animals that share her life and form part of her family, figure prominently in her memories. Strongly influenced by Native American storytelling traditions, The Turquoise Ledge becomes a moving and deeply personal contemplation of the enormous spiritual power of the natural world-of what these creatures and landscapes can communicate to us, and how they are all linked.

The book is Silko's first extended work of nonfiction, and its ambitious scope, clear prose, and inventive structure are captivating. The Turquoise Ledge will delight loyal fans and new readers alike, and it marks the return of the unique voice and vision of a gifted storyteller.


Nonfiction by Native American Authors

Whereas

Whereas confronts the coercive language of the United States government in its responses, treaties, and apologies to Native American peoples and tribes, and reflects that language in its officiousness and duplicity back on its perpetrators. Through a virtuosic array of short lyrics, prose poems, longer narrative sequences, resolutions, and disclaimers, Layli Long Soldier has created a brilliantly innovative text to examine histories, landscapes, her own writing, and her predicament inside national affiliations.

Whereas

Layli Long Soldier
Adult Nonfiction - 811.6 Lon

Whereas confronts the coercive language of the United States government in its responses, treaties, and apologies to Native American peoples and tribes, and reflects that language in its officiousness and duplicity back on its perpetrators. Through a virtuosic array of short lyrics, prose poems, longer narrative sequences, resolutions, and disclaimers, Layli Long Soldier has created a brilliantly innovative text to examine histories, landscapes, her own writing, and her predicament inside national affiliations. “I am,” she writes, “a citizen of the United States and an enrolled member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe, meaning I am a citizen of the Oglala Lakota Nation―and in this dual citizenship I must work, I must eat, I must art, I must mother, I must friend, I must listen, I must observe, constantly I must live.” This strident, plaintive book introduces a major new voice in contemporary literature.


Nonfiction by Native American Authors

Crazy Brave: A Memoir

A memoir from the Native American poet describes her youth with an abusive stepfather, becoming a single teen mom, and how she struggled to finally find inner peace and her creative voice.

Crazy Brave: A Memoir

Joy Harjo
Adult Nonfiction - 800.92 Harjo Har

A memoir from the Native American poet describes her youth with an abusive stepfather, becoming a single teen mom, and how she struggled to finally find inner peace and her creative voice.


Nonfiction by Native American Authors

The Unredeemed Captive: A Family Story from Early America

The setting for this haunting and encyclopedically researched work of history is colonial Massachusetts, where English Puritans first endeavoured to "civilize" a "savage" native populace. There, in February 1704, a French and Indian war party descended on the village of Deerfield, abducting a Puritan minister and his children. Although John Williams was eventually released, his daughter horrified the family by staying with her captors and marrying a Mohawk husband.

The Unredeemed Captive: A Family Story from Early America

John Demos
Adult Nonfiction - 973.25 De

The setting for this haunting and encyclopedically researched work of history is colonial Massachusetts, where English Puritans first endeavoured to "civilize" a "savage" native populace. There, in February 1704, a French and Indian war party descended on the village of Deerfield, abducting a Puritan minister and his children. Although John Williams was eventually released, his daughter horrified the family by staying with her captors and marrying a Mohawk husband.

Out of this incident, The Bancroft Prize-winning historian John Demos has constructed a gripping narrative that opens a window into North America where English, French, and Native Americans faced one another across gulfs of culture and belief, and sometimes crossed over.


Nonfiction by Native American Authors

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