Canadian

Those Who Run in the Sky

A coming-of-age story by Aviaq Johnston that follows a young shaman named Pitu as he learns to use his powers and ultimately finds himself lost in the world of the spirits.

Aviaq Johnston

A coming-of-age story that follows a young shaman named Pitu as he learns to use his powers and ultimately finds himself lost in the world of the spirits. After a strange and violent blizzard leaves Pitu stranded on the sea ice, without his dog team or any weapons to defend himself, he soon realizes that he is no longer in the world that he once knew.

The storm has carried him into the world of the spirits, a world populated with terrifying creatures — black wolves with red eyes, ravenous and constantly stalking him, and water-dwelling creatures that want nothing more than to snatch him and pull him into the frigid ocean through an ice crack — as well as beings less frightening, but equally as incredible, such as a lone giant who can carry Pitu in the palm of her hand and keeps caribou and polar bears as pets.

After stumbling upon a fellow shaman who has been trapped in the spirit world for many years, Pitu must master all of his shamanic powers to make his way back to the world of the living, to his family and to the girl that he loves. (From Inhabit Media)

Interviews

Growing up in Igloolik, Nunavut, Aviaq Johnston loved stories. And she loved telling them. She knew at a young age that she wanted to be an author and in 2017, Johnston released her debut novel, Those Who Run in the Sky, a coming-of-age story, which quickly got her noticed in the literary community. The novel was a finalist for the Governor General's Literary Award for Young People's Literature and just recently won an Indigenous Voices Award. Coming off the momentum of her first novel, Johnston was asked to write a children's book. The result: What's My Superpower? A touching story about a young girl searching to find what makes her special. Aviaq Johnston travels back and forth between Nunavut and Ottawa and she recently spoke with Adrian Harewood on the program Our Ottawa. 14:05
Aviaq Johnston freely admits the first book she ever wrote as a teen was terrible. But the author from Igloolik, Nunavut has moved on from a "Harry Potter rip-off" to a debut novel shortlisted for a Governor General's Literary Award for young people's literature. 7:41