Perpich News

New Native American Picture Books from Perpich Library

July 14, 2022

Perpich Library has been adding several new books to our collection this summer! This month we are highlighting the newest picture books by and about Native Americans and Indigenous Canadians. All items on this list are available at the Perpich library. Click on titles for more information.



1. 47,000 Beads by Koja Adeyoha and Angel Adeyoha; illustrated by Holly McGillis
Peyton loves to dance, and especially at Pow Wow, but her Auntie notices that she’s been dancing less and less. When Peyton shares that she isn’t comfortable wearing a dress anymore, Auntie Eyota asks some friends for help to get Peyton what she needs.

2. Blueberry Patch = Meennunyakaa written and illustrated by Jennifer Leason; written and translated by Norman Chartrand
Based in Duck Bay, Manitoba, in the 1940s, an Elder shares his experience of packing up to go out to collect blueberries, a traditional gathering that took place every summer. The Elder’s stories offer a journey back in time and are complemented by images of fields of plump blueberries, tall green grass, bannock baking over an open fire, clear freshwater streams, and the tents the people slept in. Written in English and Anishinaabemowin.

3. The First Blade of Sweetgrass: A Native American Story by Suzanne Greenlaw and Gabriel Frey; illustrations by Nancy Baker
A modern Wabanaki girl is excited to accompany her grandmother for the first time to harvest sweetgrass for basket making.

4. Josie Dances by Denise Lajimodiere; illustrations by Angela Erdrich
Josie dreams of dancing at next summer’s powwow. But first she needs many special things: a dress, a shawl, a cape, leggings, moccasins, and, perhaps most important of all, her spirit name. To gather all these essential pieces, she calls on her mom, her aunty, her kookum, and Grandma Greatwalker. They have the skills to prepare Josie for her powwow debut. In this Ojibwe girl’s coming-of-age story, Denise Lajimodiere highlights her own daughter’s experience at powwow.

5. Nibi’s Water Song by Sunshine Tenasco; illustrated by Chief Lady Bird
Nibi, a Native American girl, cannot get clean water from her tap or the river, so she goes on a journey to connect with fellow water protectors and get clean water for all.

6. The Range Eternal by Louise Erdrich; paintings by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher
A young Native American girl who considers her family’s wood-burning stove to be the heart of her home in the Turtle Mountains must adapt when it is replaced. In these charmingly illustrated pages, Louise Erdrich tells a story of hearth and home, of memory and imagination, of a shiny blue woodstove, of the warm heart of family.

7. Rez Dog by Heather Brink; illustrations by Jordan Rodgers
A heart-warming story about a little rez dog and his search for a new home, and a little girl who finds a new friend and companion.

8. Tasunka: A Lakota Horse Legend told and illustrated by Donald F. Montileaux; Lakota translation by Agnes Gay
Donald F. Montileaux retells the legend of Tasunka from the traditional stories of the Lakota people. Using the ledger-art style of his forefathers he adds colorful detail. His beautiful images enhance our understanding of the horse and its importance in Lakota culture.

9. We All Play = Kimêtawânaw by Julie Flett
From chasing, chirping birds, to swimming, squirting whales, this book for young readers reminds them how animals play just like them. This picture book, with gorgeous images and sweet simple text, is a marvelous celebration of the interconnectedness of all creatures, and includes some Cree phrases. It is based on the Cree teaching of wahkohtowin, interconnectedness and play, and includes as well the English and Cree names of the animals in the book, all of whom are from ‘Turtle Island’ (North America).

10. We Are Water Protectors by Carole Lindstrom; illustrated by Michaela Goade
When a black snake threatens to destroy the Earth and poison her people’s water, one young water protector takes a stand to defend Earth’s most sacred resource. Inspired by the many Indigenous-led movements across North America, We Are Water Protectors issues an urgent rallying cry to safeguard the Earth’s water from harm and corruption.

All items are available at the Perpich Library.