Books·Canadian

A Stranger At Home

A Stranger At Home is a picture book by Christy Jordan-Fenton & Margaret-Olemaun Pokiak-Fenton.

Christy Jordan-Fenton & Margaret-Olemaun Pokiak-Fenton, illustrated by Liz Amini-Holmes

(Annick Press)

Traveling to be reunited with her family in the arctic, 10-year-old Margaret Pokiak can hardly contain her excitement. It's been two years since her parents delivered her to the school run by the dark-cloaked nuns and brothers. Coming ashore, Margaret spots her family, but her mother barely recognizes her, screaming, "Not my girl." Margaret realizes she is now marked as an outsider. And Margaret is an outsider: she has forgotten the language and stories of her people, and she can't even stomach the food her mother prepares.

However, Margaret gradually relearns her language and her family's way of living. Along the way, she discovers how important it is to remain true to the ways of her people — and to herself. Highlighted by archival photos and striking artwork, this first-person account of a young girl's struggle to find her place will inspire young readers to ask what it means to belong. (From Annick Press)

Margaret-Olemaun Pokiak-Fenton was a Inuvialuit knowledge keeper and residential school survivor. She was the co-author of several books, including Fatty Legs: A True StoryWhen I Was Eight and Not My Girl. She died on June 2, 2021.

Christy Jordan-Fenton is Pokiak-Fenton's daughter-in-law and co-author. She now lives in Fort St. John, B.C. 

Gabrielle Grimard has illustrated over 30 picture books, including Stolen WordsWhen I Was EightNot My Girl and Stolen Words. She lives in Quebec.

Interviews

An Inuk grandmother's life has inspired a best-selling series of books about residential school so popular, they're set to become Canadian children's classic. Fatty Legs, the first in the series, is still making Top 10 lists six years after coming out. 6:31

Other books by Margaret-Olemaun Pokiak-Fenton

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