The idea of June being National Indigenous History Month, as if history isn’t history, or as if some history belongs to you and some history belongs to me, is weird to me. Still, let’s take the invitation to challenge ourselves. Learn our country’s history. Learn it from a different perspective or voice than you might be used to. Step out of the overculture, and open to stories you might have sidestepped in your life.
Try There There on for size, and then gather in real life (or zoom, if you prefer), at the library to discuss.
I love fiction for its heart-opening capacities. Reading Richard Wagamese’s book Indian Horse with my book club was a huge point of entry for me, in understanding residential schools.
One of The New York Times 10 Best Books of the Year and winner of the PEN/Hemingway Award, Tommy Orange’s wondrous and shattering bestselling novel follows twelve characters from Native communities: all traveling to the Big Oakland Powwow, all connected to one another in ways they may not yet realize. Among them is Jacquie Red Feather, newly sober and trying to make it back to the family she left behind. Dene Oxendene, pulling his life together after his uncle’s death and working at the powwow to honor his memory. Fourteen-year-old Orvil, coming to perform traditional dance for the very first time. Together, this chorus of voices tells of the plight of the urban Native American—grappling with a complex and painful history, with an inheritance of beauty and spirituality, with communion and sacrifice and heroism. Hailed as an instant classic, There There is at once poignant and unflinching, utterly contemporary and truly unforgettable.
Books are available to borrow from the library, place a hold here.
If you would like to purchase a copy of the book, Armchair Books in Whistler is offering Pemberton Community Book Club members 15% off when you mention the book club.
🌟In June we will be meeting in person at the Pemberton & District Public Library with the option of participating on Zoom 🌟
Our Book club meeting will be held on Thursday, June 24th at 7 pm, please register in advance (monthly registration is required).