Books·Canadian

Fire Song

Adam Garnet Jones (Ka-nîpawit Iskotêk) is a Cree filmmaker and writer. Fire Song is an adaptation of his award-winning feature film of the same name.

Adam Garnet Jones

How can Shane reconcile his feelings for David with his desire for a better life? Shane is still reeling from the suicide of his kid sister, Destiny. How could he have missed the fact that she was so sad? He tries to share his grief with his girlfriend, Tara, but she's too concerned with her own needs to offer him much comfort. What he really wants is to be able to turn to the one person on the rez whom he loves ― his friend, David.

Things go from bad to worse as Shane's dream of going to university is shattered and his grieving mother withdraws from the world. Worst of all, he and David have to hide their relationship from everyone. Shane feels that his only chance of a better life is moving to Toronto, but David refuses to join him. When yet another tragedy strikes, the two boys have to make difficult choices about their future together.

With deep insight into the life of Indigenous people on the reserve, this book masterfully portrays how a community looks to the past for guidance and comfort while fearing a future of poverty and shame. Shane's rocky road to finding himself takes many twists and turns, but ultimately ends with him on a path that doesn't always offer easy answers, but one that leaves the reader optimistic about his fate. (From Annick Press)

From the book

Shane is awake, wishing he wasn't. The alarm clock makes a soft warning click before flooding the room with staticky Top 40. Too loud. Shane reaches an arm out from under the covers and hits snooze for the third time. It feels better in bed. Not good, but better. As long as his door is closed, no one wants anything from him. No one is asking if he's okay, as if he'd tell them the truth anyways. He'll have to make a move eventually, but if he can coax himself into a Drift, he can delay a little longer.


From Fire Song by Adam Garnet Jones ©2018. Published by Annick Press.

More about the book

Director Adam Garnet Jones reflects on what the Canadian community at large still needs to understand about why Indigenous people "don't just leave" the reservation. 11:48
The screenwriter and director of the film Fire Song, Adam Garnet Jones, joined us for a chat about the film. The movie which explores two-spirited themes will be screened in Sudbury. 6:36

 

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