Wednesday, July 28, 2010

2010: Best Books Recommended for Middle School

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If I was starting a library in a middle school, these are the first ten books I'd buy.  In reading these books, students would be reading stories Native writers create about Native people and places.  The books I list here include fiction, historical fiction, and poetry. 

  • Bruchac, Joseph. Hidden Roots. Update on Sep 30 2023: I (Debbie Reese) no longer recommend Bruchac's work. For details see Is Joseph Bruchac truly Abenaki?
  • Carvell, Marlene. Who Will Tell My Brother?
  • Dorris, Michael. Sees Behind Trees.
  • Erdrich, Louise. The Birchbark House
  • Loyie, Larry. As Long as the Rivers Flow: A Last Summer before Residential School
  • Ortiz, Simon. The People Shall Continue
  • Smith, Cynthia Leitich. Indian Shoes
  • Smith, Cynthia Leitich. Rain Is Not My Indian Name
  • Sneve, Virginia Driving Hawk. High Elk's Treasure
  • Sterling, Shirley. My Name is Seepeetza
For annotations, see my Native Voices article in School Library Journal.

Update: Jan 7, 2012
Though she is not Native, Debby Dahl Edwardson has lived her adult life with her husband in his Inupiaq village in Alaska. Her commitment to Native lives and story is not abstract or romantic. Add her book, My Name is Not Easy to this list of must-have books for middle grade students.

See also:
Top Ten Books Recommended for High School
Top Ten Books Recommended for Elementary School

Download a pdf with all three lists:
Selecting Children's and Young Adult Literature about American Indians


LaurieA-B said...

I am sorry to find that Hidden Roots is out of print.

Debbie Reese said...

Laurie.... It is available from Joe. Here's info: