Books Backstage

The Prince George Public Library and Theatre NorthWest have partnered to connect library patrons and theatre goers with resources on themes addressed within the plays performed during Theatre NorthWest’s 2018/2019 season. In collaboration with Theatre NorthWest’s artistic director, PGPL librarians will provide recommendations of fiction, non-fiction, DVDs and other materials that may enrich the audiences’ experience of the performances. Book lists will be posted at least one month in advance of each play.

Book list to accompany The Occupation of Heather Rose By Wendy Lill
Running February 7 – 24, 2019

by Jennifer Manuel

Depicts the lonely world of Bernadette, a woman who has spent the last forty years living alone on the periphery of a remote West Coast First Nations reserve, serving as a nurse for the community. Only weeks from retirement, Bernadette finds herself unsettled, with no immediate family of her own. And then a shocking announcement crackles over the VHF radio of the remote medical outpost: Chase Charlie, the young man that Bernadette loves like a son, is missing.

by Alexandra Shimo

When freelance journalist Alexandra Shimo arrives in Kashechewan, a fly-in, northern Ontario reserve, to investigate rumours of a fabricated water crisis and document its deplorable living conditions, she finds herself drawn into the troubles of the reserve. Unable to cope with the desperate conditions, she begins to fall apart. A moving tribute to the power of hope and resilience, Invisible North is an intimate portrait of a place that pushes everyone to their limits. Part memoir, part history of the Canadian reserves, Shimo offers an expansive exploration and unorthodox take on many of the First Nation issues that dominate the news today.

by David Treuer

With authoritative research and reportage, David Treuer illuminates misunderstood contemporary issues of sovereignty, treaty rights, and natural-resource conservation. He traces the waves of public policy that have disenfranchised and exploited Native Americans, exposing the tension that has marked the historical relationship between the United States government and the Native American population. Through the eyes of students, teachers, government administrators, lawyers, and tribal court judges, he shows how casinos, tribal government, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs have transformed the landscape of Native American life.

by David Alexander Robertson

This graphic novel follows one Plains Cree family from the early nineteenth century to the present day. For Edwin, the story of his ancestors from both the distant and recent past must guide him through an uncertain present and to the dawn of a new future. 7 Generations explores the life of Stone, a young Cree warrior, the smallpox epidemic of 1870, and the residential school system of the 20th century and its familial legacy.

by Sherman Alexie

A bold and irreverent observer of life among Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest, the daring, versatile, funny, and outrageous Alexie showcases all his talents in his newest collection, Blasphemy , where he unites fifteen beloved classics with fifteen new stories in one sweeping anthology for devoted fans and first-time readers. Included are some of his most esteemed tales, including "What You Pawn I Will Redeem," "This is What it Means to Say Phoenix, Arizona," "The Toughest Indian in the World," and "War Dances." Alexie's new stories are fresh and quintessential--about donkey basketball leagues, lethal wind turbines, the reservation, marriage, and all species of contemporary American warriors.

by Tracey Lindberg

A big, beautiful Cree woman with a dark secret in her past, Bernice ("Birdie") has left her home in northern Alberta to travel to Gibsons, B.C. She is on something of a vision quest, looking for family, for home, for understanding. She is also driven by the leftover teenaged desire to meet Pat Johns--Jesse from The Beachcombers--because he is, as she says, a working, healthy Indian man. Birdie heads for Molly's Reach to find answers, but they are not the ones she expected.

by Tanya Talaga

Focusing on the lives of seven Indigenous high school students who died in Thunder Bay, Ontario., between 2000 and 2001, journalist Tanya Talaga delves into the history of this small northern city that has come to manifest Canada's long struggle with human rights violations against Indigenous communities.

by Andrew Baldwin, Laura Cameron, and Audrey Kobayashi

Canadian national identity is bound to the idea of a Great White North. Images of snow, wilderness, and emptiness seem innocent, yet this path-breaking book reveals they contain the seeds of racism. Informed by the insight that racism is geographical as well as historical and cultural, the contributors trace how notions of race, whiteness, and nature helped construct a white country in travel writing and treaty making; in scientific research and park planning; and in towns, cities, and tourist centres. Rethinking the Great White North offers a new vocabulary for contemporary debates on Canada's role in the North and the meaning of the nation.

by Arthur Manuel

As the son of George Manuel, who served as president of the National Indian Brotherhood and founded the World Council of Indigenous Peoples in the 1970s, Arthur Manuel was born into the struggle. From his unique and personal perspective, as a Secwepemc leader and an Indigenous activist who has played a prominent role on the international stage, Arthur Manuel describes the victories and failures, the hopes and the fears of a generation of activists fighting for Aboriginal title and rights in Canada.