PODCAST

‘We Are Still Here!’

BY MEGAN LABRISE • May 11, 2021

Traci Sorell’s latest picture book celebrates the sovereignty and pride of Native Nations.

On this week’s episode, Traci Sorell discusses the picture book We Are Still Here! Native American Truths Everyone Should Know (Charlesbridge, April 20), a gorgeous, informative follow-up to We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga, her award-winning debut collaboration with illustrator Frané Lessac (a Sibert, Orbis Pictus, Boston Globe–Horn Book, and American Indian Youth Literature Award honor book; one of Kirkus’ Best Books of 2018).

Kirkus: “In this meticulously researched nonfiction picture book, Sibert honorees Sorell and Lessac team up once again to answer this question: What has happened to Native Nations and their citizens after the treaties with the U.S. government ended in 1871? Lessac’s trademark colorful, folk-art–style illustrations show a Native American community school with a classroom of diverse students preparing for presentations at the Indigenous People’s Day assembly. Spread by spread, each child speaks, featured words and terms highlighting the journey Native Nations have taken to reclaim their land and rights. They show why Indigenous people say, ‘We are still here!’” (starred review).

Sorell and host Megan Labrise talk about her creative partnership with Frané Lessac; the idea of structuring the book as a series of student presentations on Native history, law, and policy; Sorell’s professional background in federal Indian law and policy; how We Are Still Here! relates to We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga; the experts she consulted when writing the book; another of her recently published books for young readers; and much more.

Then editors Laura Simeon, Eric Liebetrau, and Laurie Muchnick join with their reading recommendations for the week.

 

Editors’ picks:

Where the Rhythm Takes You by Sarah Dass (Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins)

There’s a Revolution Outside, My Love: Letters From a Crisis ed. by Tracy K. Smith and John Freeman (Vintage)

Happy All the Time by Laurie Colwin (Vintage)

 

Also mentioned in this episode:

Classified: The Secret Career of Mary Golda Ross, Cherokee Aerospace Engineerby Traci Sorell, illus. by Natasha Donovan (Millbrook/Lerner)

Island People: The Caribbean and the World by Joshua Jelly-Schapiro (Knopf)

The Penguin Book of the Modern American Short Story ed. by John Freeman (Penguin Press)

English novelist Barbara Pym (1913-1980)

No Fond Return of Love by Barbara Pym (Dutton)

 

Thanks to our advertisers this week:

Jimmy: Toughest Times Ever by Sally Hill Mills

What's College About Anyway? by Betty Patterson

A Hundred Silent Ways by Mari Jojie

The King’s Assassin and The Kings Death by Ed Cannon

 

Fully Booked is produced by Cabel Adkins Audio and Megan Labrise.

 

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