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Native American memoir
Inspired by Sherman Alexie's excellent "You Don't Have to Say You Love Me," we created this list of staff-recommended memoirs by Native Americans.
Library Board vacancies
Hennepin County residents are invited to apply to fill five vacancies on our Library Board. Applications will be accepted through December 29. Apply online today!
If you like "Wonder"
Here are more inspiring stories of unique and awesome kids who stand up to bullying and other challenges.
American Indian Youth Literature Award
This award identifies and honors the very best writing and illustrations by and about American Indians for kids and teens.
If you like "Wonder"
Here are more inspiring stories of unique and awesome kids who stand up to bullying and other challenges.
American Indian Youth Literature Award
This award identifies and honors the very best writing and illustrations by and about American Indians for kids and teens.
Native American memoir
Inspired by Sherman Alexie's excellent "You Don't Have to Say You Love Me," we created this list of staff-recommended memoirs by Native Americans.
Library Board vacancies
Hennepin County residents are invited to apply to fill five vacancies on our Library Board. Applications will be accepted through December 29. Apply online today!
Native American genealogy — Track down your truth

Many of us grew up hearing stories that our families have Native American ancestry. Have you ever done research to find out if it’s true? November is Native American Heritage month, so it’s the perfect time to track down the truth in your family tree.

Here are a few resources to get you started.

Research and DNA—Not one or the other

DNA tests are popular, but a DNA test alone is not enough. Because autosomal DNA is randomized or shuffled every time it’s handed down to a child, you could come up positive for Native American ancestry while your brother does not (or vice versa). If you get a positive DNA match for Native American ancestry, great! You have an exciting starting place. If you don’t, that it doesn’t necessarily mean you don’t have Native American ancestry. It could mean you didn’t inherit that “bit” of DNA. Find tips on what to look for when you choose where to buy your DNA test.

Specialized resources for Native American genealogy 

The National Indian Law Library has pulled together a great starter page for beginning researchers–a must-visit! You’ll find links to resources, book recommendations and tribal resources.

If you know what tribe you are looking for, you’re off to a great start. If you are unsure what tribe your ancestor was affiliated with, you need to establish the geographical location of the ancestor and research what tribes lived or still live in that area. You’ll find a full list of federally recognized tribes on the Federal Register Notice of Indian Entities from the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA).

Visit the BIA home page to access information on federally recognized tribes, contact information for your region’s BIA office, and contact information for tribal leadership.

Another good place to start is the National Archives, which holds information on Native Americans from 1774-the 1990s. You’ll find resources that can help you search for an individual or family, treaties and geography.

FamilySearch is a fantastic, free tool that you can access from anywhere. Build a family tree, connect with other users, and access millions of records online. Visit the FamilySearch Wiki to getting started with Native American genealogy.

Get fired up for family research and visit the Baker Genealogy Center at your library to dig in and access expert help.

Exclusive screening of Te Ata and Q&A with the screenwriter, Nov 28, 6:30pm

The film is based on the inspiring, true story of Mary Thompson Fisher also known as Te Ata, a woman who traversed cultural barriers to become one of the greatest Native American performers of all time. She first performed during a time when displays of Native American culture were prohibited in the U.S. Born in Indian Territory, and raised on the songs and stories of her Chickasaw culture, Te Ata’s journey to find her true calling led her through isolation, discovery, love and a stage career that culminated in performances for a U.S. president, European royalty and audiences across the world. Produced by the Chickasaw Nation, Te Ata features an all-star cast and has been nominated for several awards since it debuted at festivals earlier this year. Join the Facebook event to add this event to your calendar.

The post Native American genealogy — Track down your truth appeared first on Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library.

What YA’ reading

Check out my reviews of young adult (YA) books. I have loved reading YA for a long time. YA book have a unique style, they are usually pretty easy reads and take on new story ideas. These particular stories are ones that struck me as interesting reads, either because the story was so good or because I was so disappointed in the story. Here’s my take on a few YA novels.

Prep School Confidential (Prep School Confidential, #1) by Kara Taylor

I am a big mystery fan, particularly when they aren’t really gruesome. I’m not a blood and gore person, so Prep School Confidential was a good choice for me. This book features Anne Dowling, who has the bad habit of getting into trouble and is kicked out of her boarding school after almost burning it down. Her parents send her to Wheatley School, one of the only schools that can be convinced to take her in. She meets her new roommate, Isabella, and is starting to settle in when Isabella’s body is found in the woods near the school.

I enjoyed this book overall. Anne is a likeable character. She is a bit boy-crazy and her focus on the guys around her feels a bit much when you think about the fact that her roommate just died. There’s a love triangle that felt a little hollow and forced.

I give this book 4 stars out of 5.

Into the Dim (Into the Dim, #1) by Janet B. Taylor

Into the Dim was a fun read. Hope Walton is invited to stay with her aunt following her mother being declared dead. Hope discovers that her aunt, her mother and others are time travelers. Her mother is not actually dead, but trapped in the past. Hope travels into the past to save her mother, but unfortunately, rival time travelers want to prevent her success.

Hope is an interesting with flaws that make her believable and relatable. An unexpected twist comes late in the book that made this book much more interesting and sets up the cliffhanger for the second book.

I really enjoyed how the author, Janet B. Taylor, introduces Elinor of Aquitaine, a real historical figure, which made me interested in learning about her as an actual person. I had heard of her as a part of history, but I loved the personality the author gave her and the people around her that gave this book depth and made it fun to read.

I give this book 5 stars out of 5.

As Old As Time (A Twisted Tale, #3) by Liz Braswell

There are some occasions when I want a book to be really amazing and it falls flat on its face. Enter As Old As Time, a retelling of the Beauty and the Beast story. I need to preface this with the fact that I have loved Beauty and the Beast since I was a little girl. I had such high hopes and this book dashed them. This book adds a twist that Belle’s mother is the enchantress who places the spell on the Beast.

This book moved at a snail’s pace, particularly in first few chapters, which was mostly a re-telling of the story everyone knows. I really wanted to get to the part of the story that was new. Once I did, I enjoyed it a bit more, but it just couldn’t salvage the story. There was what was supposed to be a twist at the end of the book, but it was very strongly hinted at earlier in the book so I saw it coming a mile away. Overall, the storytelling was stilted. I walked away from this book bitterly disappointed.

I give this book 1 star out of 5.

 

What are some of your favorite young adult books?

 

 

The post What YA’ reading appeared first on Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library.

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