Friday, January 27, 2017

Debbie--have you seen Ruby Slipperjack's THE RESIDENTIAL SCHOOL DIARY OF VIOLET PESHEENS?

A reader wrote to ask if I've seen Ruby Slipperjack's The Residential School Diary of Violet Pesheens. Published by Scholastic in its Dear Canada series, this one is set in Northern Ontario, Canada, 1966.

Here's the synopsis from the Scholastic website:
Violet Pesheens is struggling to adjust to her new life at Residential School. She misses her Grandma; she has run-ins with Cree girls; at her “white” school, everyone just stares; and everything she brought has been taken from her, including her name—she is now just a number. But worst of all, she has a fear. A fear of forgetting the things she treasures most: her Anishnabe language; the names of those she knew before; and her traditional customs. A fear of forgetting who she was.
Her notebook is the one place she can record all of her worries, and heartbreaks, and memories. And maybe, just maybe there will be hope at the end of the tunnel.
Drawing from her own experiences at Residential School, Ruby Slipperjack creates a brave, yet heartbreaking heroine in Violet, and lets young readers glimpse into an all-too important chapter in our nation’s history.

I hope I am able to get a copy! Because this is an #OwnVoices book, I look forward to it.


Ellen Fleischer said...

Ruby Slipperjack has also contributed to I read it not too long ago.

Sam Jonson said...

I surely hope it's a good book. It would be an EXCELLENT counter to those racist Dear America books, My Heart is on the Ground and The Girl who Chased Away Sorrow. Wonder what new practices Scholastic implemented that brought them to publish a book on Amerindians that was written by an Amerindian writer, as opposed to an European writer. Also, I wonder what exactly led them to do it better with the Dear Canada series. Was it the backlash from Usonian Amerindians over Heart and Sorrow? Or was there some other reason for that change? Either way, I hope it's a lovely change.

Beverly Slapin said...

I hope so, too, Sam. And, though I haven't read it yet, I'm heartened that Ruby Slipperjack wrote this book. She's a wonderful writer who's done several books published in Canada. Although our reviews of those racist books, and were published more than a decade ago, my guess is that they had great impact.