This week we had an amazing time learning about gardening, harvesting, recipes, and history from award-winning Ojibwa author and speaker Kim Sigafus. Missed the program? Watch the recorded version anytime through April 27th.
If you are interested in reading about Native American experiences or about gardening, check out our staff recommendations:
As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer has been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these two lenses of knowledge together to take us on “a journey that is every bit as mythic as it is scientific, as sacred as it is historical, as clever as it is wise.
Rendered a single mom after her husband’s fatal car accident, textbook illustrator Lillian recruits her young daughters and supportive sister to help her do research for a boutique vegetable guide at the Los Angeles Botanical Garden, where a patient instructor and quirky gardeners help her grieve and find healing.
A novel which grapples with the complex history of Native Americans; with an inheritance of profound spirituality; and with a plague of addiction, abuse and suicide, follows 12 characters, each of whom has private reasons for traveling to the Big Oakland Powwow.
Centering around three courageous women, who meet for the first time at a crossroads in their lives, this first installment in a new trilogy follows Stella as she casts aside her fears and finds a special love that she will do anything to protect.
A historical novel based on the life of the author’s grandfather traces the experiences of a Chippewa Council night watchman in mid-19th-century rural North Dakota who fights Congress to enforce Native American treaty rights.
Seeking solace in the Malaysian plantations of her childhood after grueling World War II experiences, criminal prosecutor Yun Ling Teoh discovers a Japanese garden and its enigmatic tender, an exiled Japanese royal gardener who reluctantly accepts her as an apprentice.
A vigilante enforcer on South Dakota’s Rosebud Indian Reservation enlists the help of an ex to investigate the activities of an expanding drug cartel, while a new tribal council initiative raises controversial questions.
A talented but reclusive gardener is inspired by her love of classic literature to embark on a female odyssey to reconnect with her four once-close friends through simple activities and digital encounters that unexpectedly catapult her into viral fame.
A young black man grows up determined to resegregate a portion of an inner city, aided by a former Little Rascals star who volunteers to be his slave. This illegal activity brings him to the attention of the Supreme Court, who must consider the ramifications of this (and other) race-related cases. Readers who can handle provocative language and racial stereotypes will appreciate the glee that Paul Beatty brings to his critique and questioning of black identity.
When struggling suspense novelist and single mom Finlay Donovan is mistaken for a contract killer, she inadvertently accepts the offer to dispose of a problem husband in order to make ends meet, discovering that crime in real life is a lot harder than fiction.
Forced into semi-retirement after an assassination attempt, Thursday Next finds her recuperation challenged by the personal and professional struggles of her children and Goliath’s constant attempts to replace her with synthetic duplicates.
Accidentally causing the death of a blind date, Meddy is persuaded by her meddlesome Chinese-Indonesian mother and aunts to dispose of the body, which upends a billionaire’s wedding and Meddy’s reunion with a former flame.
Agnes Murphy Nash is the perfect Hollywood wife – she has the right friends, the right clothes and even a side career of her own as a writer – until her bigshot producer husband decides it is time to end their marriage.
Enduring a virtually solitary existence working for an ambitious software company, an exhausted coder is bequeathed a sourdough recipe from sibling bakers who are forced to close their shop, a gift that leads to a new vocation, a legal dispute and a venture into a secret market that fuses food with technology.
Taken hostage by a failed bank robber while attending an open house, eight anxiety-prone strangers—including a redemption-seeking bank director, two couples who would fix their marriages and a plucky octogenarian—discover their unexpected common traits.
Told over the course of 70 years, this spellbinding debut novel traces three generations of a Southern Black family and one daughter, who, channeling her rage into art, discovers with the power of her paint brush, she can change her family’s legacy.
Family saga / Alternating points of view / Vibrant writing
A detective in the black-skied Night City investigates an anomaly in the North American wilderness and uncovers a series of lives upended: the exiled son of an earl driven to madness, a writer trapped far from home as a pandemic ravages Earth, and a childhood friend from the Night City who, like Gaspery himself, has glimpsed the chance to do something extraordinary that will disrupt the timeline of the universe.
A mid-1980s longshoreman who does occasional stints for the Irish crime syndicate becomes embroiled in a conflict between rival factions in the first book of a new series from the New York Times best-selling author of The Force.
A Chinese American art history major at Harvard, Will Chen is offered a (very illegal) chance to reclaim five priceless treasures China lost centuries ago and assembles a team of fellow students, chosen for their skills and loyalty, to help him on his mission–and make history.
When their father decides to divorce their mother, who, in a care facility for dementia, cannot speak for herself, so he can marry his young girlfriend Heather, sisters Tully and Rachel must find the truth about their family’s secrets, Heather and who their father really is.
Domestic suspense/ Darkly humorous / Twists and turns
ER doctor Alexis Montgomery’s world is turned upside down by a ridiculously hot carpenter who’s ten years younger, and as their short-term flings turns into a relationship, she must choose between her ultra-wealthy parents and true love.
Moving to Grand Haven with her traumatized veteran husband, Abby bonds with her reclusive next-door neighbor over a shared love of flowers that they cultivate together, discovering hope and healing along the way.
Inspired by the true story of Dido Elizabeth Belle, the illegitimate daughter of a Royal Navy captain, this period drama features Belle whose lineage affords her certain privileges, yet the color of her skin prevents her from fully participating in society and leaves her left wondering if she will ever find love.