Historical Fiction with Native Americans 

BookSummaryClub Blog Historical Fiction with Native Americans 
brown wooden bookshelf and book lot

Historical fiction is the most exciting genre; it involves the scope of what can be discussed and written, what time can be encompassed, and what can be altered, modified, or changed. 

Native American historical fiction, especially those books by Native American authors, has few popular entries but many good ones if you’re looking.

Native American culture is one of the richest based on actual events; it is not a monolith, nor is it literature. Native American authors weave fascinating tales for all genres that range from young adults and crime thrillers to horror and literary fiction.

These books about native Americans offer a platform for voices often silenced in native American literature & history.

Many people’s favorite genre is historical fiction with Native Americans. In this article, we’ll list the best historical novels with native Americans for you to choose from. 

Historical Fiction Books With Native Americans

1. House Of Purple Cedar By Tim Tingle. 

House of Purple Cedar
  • Tingle, Tim (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 192 Pages – 02/18/2014 (Publication Date) – Cinco Puntos Press (Publisher)

1896 was a bad year for 11-year-old Rose Goode, who is maturing in the Skillyvilles Choctaw community in Oklahoma. At first, an arsonist burns down her school, killing Rose’s classmates.

Later, her loving grandfather Amafo is harshly beaten by the town’s Marshal -an occurrence with far-reaching effects. 

As the dispute between land-grabbing nahullos, i.e., white settlers and Skullyvilles inhabitants, escalates, Rose and her family fear for their survival with hopes that better times will come. 

2. The Orenda By Joseph Boyden.

The Orenda: A Novel
  • Audible Audiobook
  • Joseph Boyden (Author) – Ali Ahn, Graham Rowat, Edoardo Ballerini (Narrators)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 05/13/2014 (Publication Date) – Recorded Books (Publisher)

This book sets in 17th-century Ontario during the French Conquest of Canada. This sweeping and richly detailed historical epic opens through the eyes of three people – Jesuit missionary Pere Christophe, warrior bird Huron(Wyandot), and his iriiquos captive Snow Falls.

The French exploits the prolonged conflict between the Iriquois and the Huron to gain the full power of their territories, shifting unions between the three groups irrevocably modifying the lives of its indigenous people and the landscape of North America. 

Annie Proulx’s Barksons, who is more attentive to the experiences of the European colonizers, also explores the setting and periods. 

3. The Seed Keeper By Diane Wilson.

The Seed Keeper: A Novel
  • Audible Audiobook
  • Diane Wilson (Author) – Kyla García (Narrator)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 06/15/2021 (Publication Date) – HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books (Publisher)

This fascinating novel unfolds across numerous timelines. After Rosalie’s father dies, Rosalie Ironwing is kept in foster care and marries a white farmer.

Her husband dies, and years later, Rosalie returns to her hometown for the first time in a long while to face the people she left behind.

Rosalie digs into her family’s past and finds comfort in the stories of resilience and survival of the generations of Dakota women.

This exciting novel is a soft but superheated story about the natural world, matriarchal lineage, power of seeds, and community. 

4. Celia’s Song By Lee Miracle. 

Celia’s Song
  • Maracle, Lee (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 288 Pages – 01/05/2019 (Publication Date) – Cormorant Books (Publisher)

Celia’s Song is a multi-generational novel about trauma & healing, the connections between humans, the natural and the spirit worlds, the power of storytelling, and the legacies of colonialism. 

In this renowned book, Celia is a Nuu-Chah-Nulth seer who lives with her family in a small town on the West Coast of Canada.

Her visions and interactions with Mink, a shape-shifter, lead her on a self-discovery journey that unfolds the truth her family has long hidden.

The truth she discovers allows her and her community to seek new ways of being with each other and processing grief. 

5. Murder On The Red River By Marcie R. Rendon.

Murder on the Red River: The Cash Blackbear Mysteries, Book 1
  • Audible Audiobook
  • Marcie R. Rendon (Author) – Siiri Scott (Narrator)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 07/21/2020 (Publication Date) – Blackstone Publishing (Publisher)

This story unfolds in 1970s Minnesota. Cash, a 19-year-old, is a tough woman who has dealt with many occurrences throughout her life.

Cash uses both a no-nonsense attitude and humor as a protective shield; she’s also gifted with visions, which gives her an upper hand in mystery-solving. This book is for readers who enjoy vivid settings with character-driven mysteries. 

6. Even As We Breathe By Amette Saunooke Clapsaddle. 

Even as We Breathe: A Novel
  • Audible Audiobook
  • Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle (Author) – Kaipo Schwab (Narrator)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 06/22/2021 (Publication Date) – Tantor Audio (Publisher)

This story opens in 1940 in North Carolina. Cowney, a young Cherokee man, gets a job at a luxury Inn – one that houses elite convicts of wars like politicians and diplomats. 

It is a character-driven, quiet story about a unique place and time, one that is barely written about despite the increase of World war ii novels.

This author explores intersections of power, race, and class. 

7. Five Little Indians By Michelle Good. 

Five Little Indians: A Novel
4,877 people on Amazon loves this❣️
Five Little Indians: A Novel
  • Audible Audiobook
  • Michelle Good (Author) – Kyla Garcia (Narrator)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 04/14/2020 (Publication Date) – HarperCollins Publishers (Publisher)

This historical story begins with Five Little Indians, who follow some teenagers who are school survivors as they try to build their lives in the wake of unspeakable trauma.

After spending their childhood detained in a Catholic-run school, they successfully emerge as young adults with zero support system and into a world that wants them invisible or dead. 

Each of them processes their pain differently; one jumps from one job to another, seeking to belong, while another submerges herself into the American Indian movement. This book is a beautifully written novel that you will love. 

8. Kiss Of The Fur Queen By Tomson Highway. 

Kiss of the Fur Queen
125 people on Amazon loves this❣️
Kiss of the Fur Queen
  • Audible Audiobook
  • Tomson Highway (Author) – Patricia Cano (Narrator)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 06/01/2021 (Publication Date) – Doubleday Canada (Publisher)

Toson Highway’s own story is a valuable but painful book. It is about two Cree brothers who got stolen from their homes and sent to a Catholic Residential School in Canada, where they both experience abuse and violence. 

The Cree brothers grow up as adults who wrestle with their separate traumas; they find magic, healing, and community in surprising places. 

9. Generations By David A. Robertson.

7 Generations: A Plains Cree Saga
  • Robertson, David A. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 136 Pages – 09/26/2012 (Publication Date) – HighWater Press (Publisher)

If you love graphic historical fiction, we’ve got you covered. It is framed around a mother and her son Edwin; she’s telling him the stories and history of the Cree nation and the native american life going seven generations back.

Generations by David A. Robertson collects the four comics that make up the “Plains Cree saga’. This epic story doesn’t feel distant or unbiased; it has striking art that makes for a visceral reading experience. 

10. Gardens In The Dunes By Leslie Marmon Silko. 

111 people on Amazon loves this❣️
  • Silko, Leslie Marmon (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 480 Pages – 04/13/2000 (Publication Date) – Simon & Schuster (Publisher)

This powerful story unfolds in the 1800s; it follows Indigo, a young native American woman who is taken from her family & people and sent to a government school, where a white couple eventually adopts her.

This fascinating story moves across space and time, from Europe to southwest America. Indigo struggles to find her way back home, to her family and community where she was stolen from, and back to herself. 

In Conclusion;

The books in this article cover hundreds of years; you’ll find murder mysteries, family sagas, coming-of-age stories, and war stories.

These books are governed by a bit of magic that you’ll love. Have fun reading every one of them.

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