First Nation Communities READ 2018-2019 announces the selected titles in the Children’s and YA/Adult Categories. Chosen by a jury of Indigenous librarians from across Ontario, these titles represent the best of Indigenous literature. The selected titles’ authors will be presented with the Periodical Marketers of Canada Indigenous Literature Award on June 27th in Toronto at Yonge/Dundas Square as part of National Indigenous History Month celebrations. The Indigenous Literature Award comes with a prize of $3000 for each author.
Children’s Category Selected Title
The Water Walker by Joanne Robertson
Published by Second Story Press
The story of a determined Ojibwe Grandmother (Nokomis) Josephine Mandamin and her great love for Nibi (water). Nokomis walks to raise awareness of our need to protect Nibi for future generations, and for all life on the planet.
Joanne Robertson is AnishinaabeKwe and a member of Atikameksheng Anishnawbek. She continues to help water walkers through live GPS spotting to make sure the water is safe on their journeys. Joanne lives near Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.
Young Adult/Adult Selected Title
Seven Fallen Feathers by Tanya Talaga
Published by House of Anansi Press
This is the story about seven Indigenous high school students who died in Thunder Bay, Ontario. The students were far away from home, forced to attend school in the northern city and were ultimately found dead in the region.
Tanya Talaga has been a journalist at the Toronto Star for twenty years. Tanya is of Polish and Indigenous descent. Her great-grandmother, Liz Gauthier, was a residential school survivor. Her great-grandfather, Russell Bowen, was an Ojibwe trapper and labourer. Her grandmother is a member of Fort William First Nation. Her mother was raised in Raith and Graham, Ontario. Tanya lives in Toronto with her two teenage children.
Periodical Marketers of Canada Indigenous Literature Award
The Periodical Marketers of Canada’s Indigenous Literature Award is inspired by the goals of the First Nation Communities READ program. It will provide each of the authors of the First Nation Communities READ 2018-2019 title selections with a $3,000 prize. This is the fifth year the Periodical Marketers of Canada will present the Indigenous Literature Award.
First Nation Communities READ is the Ontario First Nation Public Library Community’s contribution to the popular reading movement. Launched in 2003 with support from Southern Ontario Library Service, it promotes a community-based approach to reading, FNCR:
- encourages family literacy, intergenerational storytelling, and intergenerational information sharing;
- increases awareness of the relevance and importance of First Nation, Métis, and Inuit writing, illustration, and publishing;
- promotes the publication, sharing, and understanding of First Nation, Métis, and Inuit voices and experiences.
Southern Ontario Library Service (SOLS) is mandated to deliver programs and services on behalf of the Ontario Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport by:
- increasing cooperation and coordination among public library boards and other information providers to promote the provision of library service to the public;
- assisting public library boards by providing them with services and programs that reflect their needs, including consultation, training and development.
Periodical Marketers of Canada is the national association of magazine and book wholesalers serving thousands of retail newsstands across Canada. Periodical Marketers of Canada was established under federal charter in 1942 for the purpose of furthering the wholesale periodical distribution industry and contributing to the encouragement of reading in Canada. Current members of the association are: Monahan Agency, Vernon, BC; Metro360, Toronto, ON; TNG, Burlington, ON.
PMC’s ongoing activities include funding of a nonprofit charitable foundation, the Foundation for the Advancement of Canadian Letters, which makes contributions to individuals and agencies engaged in the encouragement of literacy and reading in Canada.