Trying out a new popular format, the “to read list.” Here are a few books, some old and some new, that I’m looking forward to reading in the near future.
1. Jonny Appleseed by Joshua Whitehead
“Off the reserve and trying to find ways to live and love in the big city, Jonny becomes a cybersex worker who fetishizes himself in order to make a living. Self-ordained as an NDN glitter princess, Jonny has one week before he must return to the “rez,” and his former life, to attend the funeral of his stepfather.”
2. Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse
“While most of the world has drowned beneath the sudden rising waters of a climate apocalypse, Dinétah (formerly the Navajo reservation) has been reborn. The gods and heroes of legend walk the land, but so do monsters. Maggie Hoskie is a Dinétah monster hunter, a supernaturally gifted killer. When a small town needs help finding a missing girl, Maggie is their last—and best—hope.”
3. Calling Out After Slaughter by M. Carmen Lane
I couldn’t find an online description of this book, but I am reliably told that these poems by Mohawk, Tuscarora, and African-American Two-Spirit author M. Carmen Lane are amazing. Looking forward to getting into them soon.
4. Nature Poem by Tommy Pico
“Nature Poem follows Teebs―a young, queer, American Indian (or NDN) poet―who can’t bring himself to write a nature poem. For the reservation-born, urban-dwelling hipster, the exercise feels stereotypical, reductive, and boring. He hates nature….But Teebs gradually learns how to interpret constellations through his own lens, along with human nature, sexuality, language, music, and Twitter.” I had the joy of hearing Tommy Pico read from this book at the Native American Literature Symposium, and I can’t wait to read the rest.
5. Evil Dead Center by Carole laFavor
“An Ojibwa woman has been found dead on the outskirts of the Minnesota Red Earth Reservation. The coroner ruled the death a suicide, but after some suggest foul play was involved, Renee LaRoche wants to prove otherwise, uncovering horrible truths and working through her own childhood issues to help shine a light on the dark web she has stumbled into.”