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National day for truth and reconciliation - our recommended books

Updated: Dec 7, 2021

EDIT: For an updated copy of this Book List, go to our catalogue!

On September 30, 2021, Canadians will commemorate their first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. For many of us, the past few months have been the first time where the tragedies that occurred in residential schools across the country were brought to our attention. The question of what reconciliation and our responsibilities look like has become even more important. We hope that the stories of survivors and Indigenous communities we've gathered here serve as a starting point for your efforts to understand the experiences of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples. You can view the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action here. You can learn more about the rich histories of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples on the Government of Canada's Begin Your Learning Journey website.



21 Things You May Not Know about the Indian Act: Helping Canadians Make Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples a Reality by Robert P. Joseph

The Education of Augie Merasty: A Residential School Memoir by Joseph Auguste Merasty & David Carpenter

Five Little Indians by Michelle Good

From Bear Rock Mountain: The Life and Times of a Dene

Residential School Survivor by Antoine Mountain

In This Together by Danielle Metcalfe-Chenail

Picking Up the Pieces: Residential School Memories and the Making of the Witness Blanket by Carey Newman and Kristie Hudson (eBook). Print copy on order.

The Reason You Walk by Wab Kinew

Wenjak by Joseph Boyden



As Long as the Rivers Flow by James Bartleman

Indian Horse by Richard Wagamese

The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline

Secret Path by Jeff Lemire and Gord Downie

Sugar Falls: A Residential School Story by David Robertson, Scott B. Henderson, & Donovan Yaciuk


younger kids -picture books

Amik Loves School: A Story of Wisdom by Katherena Vermette

I Lost My Talk by Rita Joe

I'm Finding My Talk by Rebecca Thomas

You Hold Me Up by Monique Gray Smith


Older Kids: Chapter Books & Informational Books

As Long as the Rivers Flow by Larry Loyie

Orange Shirt Day by Phyllis Webstad

A Stranger at Home by Jordan-Fenton Christy (eBook). Print copy on order.

Speaking Our Truth by Monique Gray Smith

These Are My Words: The Residential School Diary of Violet Presheens by Ruby Slipperjack

Truth and Reconciliation Indigenous Life in Canada Past, Present, and Future by Simon Rose

See also our Curated Picture Books about Residential Schools

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