100 books like All Our Relations

By Tanya Talaga,

Here are 100 books that All Our Relations fans have personally recommended if you like All Our Relations. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Our History Is the Future: Standing Rock Versus the Dakota Access Pipeline, and the Long Tradition of Indigenous Resistance

Caroline Dodds Pennock Author Of On Savage Shores: How Indigenous Americans Discovered Europe

From my list on the Indigenous histories of North America.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been a historian of the Indigenous world for more than two decades, but I have learned so much since I expanded my perspective from Mesoamerica and the Aztec-Mexica into the wider history of Native peoples. There are literally hundreds of Indigenous communities across the world and so there is always more to learn. I have been incredibly privileged to learn by listening to Indigenous people – in person, in print, and on digital and social media. I hope these books can offer some starting points to set you on a similar journey of discovery, opening up some new ways of thinking and of seeing both the past and the present.

Caroline's book list on the Indigenous histories of North America

Caroline Dodds Pennock Why did Caroline love this book?

Combining personal memoir and scrupulous history, this traces the long history of Indigenous resistance in the United States, showing it as a story of self-defence and struggles for sovereignty.

Starting with the remarkable Indigenous resistance against the Dakota Access Pipeline at Standing Rock, Estes’s work manages to combine a readable introduction to complex history with an urgent recognition of the stakes involved in the fight for land, water, and natural resources today.

One of my favourite recommendations to anyone who wants to start understanding the deep roots of contemporary issues facing Indigenous communities.

By Nick Estes,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Our History Is the Future as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In 2016, a small protest encampment at the Standing Rock reservation in North Dakota, initially established to block construction of the Dakota Access oil pipeline, grew to be the largest Indigenous protest movement in the twenty-first century, attracting tens of thousands of Indigenous and non-Native allies from around the world. Its slogan "Mni Wiconi"-Water is Life-was about more than just a pipeline. Water Protectors knew this battle for Native sovereignty had already been fought many times before, and that, even after the encampment was gone, their anti-colonial struggle would continue.

In Our History is the Future, Nick Estes traces traditions…


Book cover of The Other Slavery: The Uncovered Story of Indian Enslavement in America

Caroline Dodds Pennock Author Of On Savage Shores: How Indigenous Americans Discovered Europe

From my list on the Indigenous histories of North America.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been a historian of the Indigenous world for more than two decades, but I have learned so much since I expanded my perspective from Mesoamerica and the Aztec-Mexica into the wider history of Native peoples. There are literally hundreds of Indigenous communities across the world and so there is always more to learn. I have been incredibly privileged to learn by listening to Indigenous people – in person, in print, and on digital and social media. I hope these books can offer some starting points to set you on a similar journey of discovery, opening up some new ways of thinking and of seeing both the past and the present.

Caroline's book list on the Indigenous histories of North America

Caroline Dodds Pennock Why did Caroline love this book?

Andrés Reséndez estimates that between 2.4 and 4.9 million Indigenous Americans were enslaved between 1492 and 1900, a statistic that will shock many people, as the history of Native enslavement in the Americas barely seems to have touched the popular imagination.

This book, accessibly written but based on meticulous research, is absolutely essential reading, as it returns this ‘other slavery’ to its rightful place in our understandings of Indigenous, American, and global history.

By Andres Resendez,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Other Slavery as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Since the time of Columbus, Indian slavery was illegal in much of the American continent. Yet, as historian Andres Resendez illuminates in The Other Slavery, it was practiced for centuries as an open secret. There was no abolitionist movement to protect the tens of thousands of natives who were kidnapped and enslaved by the conquistadors and later forced to serve as domestics for Mormons and rich Anglos, or to descend into the "mouth of hell" of eighteenth-century silver mines, where, if they didn't die quickly from cave-ins, they would die slowly from silica in their lungs. Resendez builds the incisive,…


Book cover of The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee: Native America from 1890 to the Present

David B. Allison Author Of Controversial Monuments and Memorials: A Guide for Community Leaders

From my list on memory that make you question how you see the past.

Why am I passionate about this?

Memory is capricious and impacts our view of the past. That’s why I do what I do! I am a twenty-year museum professional who began my career at Conner Prairie Interactive History Park, worked at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science for almost ten years, and am now part of the Arts & History department at the City and County of Broomfield. I have designed and developed programs and events, as well as managed teams in each of these stops. I seek to illuminate stories, elevate critical voices, and advocate for equity through the unique pathways of the arts, history, and museum magic.

David's book list on memory that make you question how you see the past

David B. Allison Why did David love this book?

Dee Brown’s landmark 1970 book Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee provided a beautiful and much-needed antidote to the ‘march of the pioneers’ and Manifest Destiny narratives that held sway over much of the history of the western United States from 1850s-1890.

Over time, however, Brown’s book (and more specifically the massacre at Wounded Knee) became calcified as the ‘end point’ of histories about indigenous people. Treuer challenges this perspective by showcasing native resistance, resilience, and flourishing in the wake of Wounded Knee. Indigenous history is deep, varied, and filled with fascinating people and events—Treuer shows us how to find hope and joy in history even though there is also profound pain.

By David Treuer,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

FINALIST FOR THE 2019 NATIONAL BOOK AWARD

LONGLISTED FOR THE 2020 ANDREW CARNEGIE MEDAL FOR EXCELLENCE

A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

Named a best book of 2019 by The New York Times, TIME, The Washington Post, NPR, Hudson Booksellers, The New York Public Library, The Dallas Morning News, and Library Journal.

"Chapter after chapter, it's like one shattered myth after another." - NPR

"An informed, moving and kaleidoscopic portrait... Treuer's powerful book suggests the need for soul-searching about the meanings of American history and the stories we tell ourselves about this nation's past.." - New York Times Book Review, front…


Book cover of Becoming Kin: An Indigenous Call to Unforgetting the Past and Reimagining Our Future

Caroline Dodds Pennock Author Of On Savage Shores: How Indigenous Americans Discovered Europe

From my list on the Indigenous histories of North America.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been a historian of the Indigenous world for more than two decades, but I have learned so much since I expanded my perspective from Mesoamerica and the Aztec-Mexica into the wider history of Native peoples. There are literally hundreds of Indigenous communities across the world and so there is always more to learn. I have been incredibly privileged to learn by listening to Indigenous people – in person, in print, and on digital and social media. I hope these books can offer some starting points to set you on a similar journey of discovery, opening up some new ways of thinking and of seeing both the past and the present.

Caroline's book list on the Indigenous histories of North America

Caroline Dodds Pennock Why did Caroline love this book?

In this humane call to action, Anishnaabe author Patty Krawec combines an accessible introduction to the European invasion of the Americas with practical suggestions for grappling with these histories and their legacy.

Weaving the stories of her ancestors with personal accounts and historical context, Krawec makes a case for how Christian and Indigenous worldviews can become compatible, and makes suggestions for how we can all become better kin to each other. I devoured this book and have been recommending it to everyone ever since.

By Patty Krawec,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Becoming Kin as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

We find our way forward by going back.

The invented history of the Western world is crumbling fast, Anishinaabe writer Patty Krawec says, but we can still honor the bonds between us. Settlers dominated and divided, but Indigenous peoples won't just send them all "home."

Weaving her own story with the story of her ancestors and with the broader themes of creation, replacement, and disappearance, Krawec helps readers see settler colonialism through the eyes of an Indigenous writer. Settler colonialism tried to force us into one particular way of living, but the old ways of kinship can help us imagine…


Book cover of The Prediction

Steph Nelson Author Of The Final Scene: A Thriller

From my list on unputdownable horror thrillers with badass female protagonists.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love feeling scared in a controlled situation—like on my couch with a soft blanket and a book—so horror thrillers are my jam. I absolutely love it when a female protagonist is so smart and courageous that I genuinely don’t know what I would do differently. This gives me someone to truly root for. Over time, I’ve discovered all the ways scary books help me manage my anxiety. Reading about all my worst fears but knowing I can set the book down if I need to is empowering. (Spoiler alert: I never set the book down.)

Steph's book list on unputdownable horror thrillers with badass female protagonists

Steph Nelson Why did Steph love this book?

I instantly fell in love with this book's MC, Rowena. She’s just so stinking relatable, and when her world starts to spiral into a dark hell, a la Black Mirror, she has to decide who she is going to believe in order to save herself and her baby girl.

The whole time I read this one, I wondered what I would do. Who would I believe if I were her? I love that feeling of being suspended in dread and the unknown as I read a thriller. This one delivered that for me.

By Faith Gardner,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Prediction as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"The best thriller of the year! This book absolutely left me aghast." —Netgalley reviewer ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

A new marriage. A perfect home. A machine that says it's all a lie.

Rowena Snyder has the life she's always wanted. So why is everything falling apart?

Moving to the suburbs was supposed to be easy. Instead, Rowena struggles with panic attacks, a husband who wants her on medication, and the isolation of new motherhood. Then a suspicious house fire at her baby’s birthday party threatens to send her over the edge.

When Rowena's husband brings home a product in beta testing at his…


Book cover of Free to Fly: A Story of Manic Depression

Mahala Yates Stripling Author Of Bioethics and Medical Issues in Literature

From my list on medical/scientific stories that show what it means to be human.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an independent scholar who read Mortal Lessons, Richard Selzer’s book of essays about our common human condition - mortality. I began writing the biography of this Yale surgeon who influenced the literature-and-medicine movement, ushering in patient-centered care. I read everything by and about him, gaining a background in the medical humanities. In the middle of this project, I was asked to write Bioethics and Medical Issues in Literature. The first edition came out in 2005; subsequently I updated and published a second paperback edition in 2013, accessible by the general public and used as a complete curriculum. Clearly, reading literature helps us explore what makes us human.

Mahala's book list on medical/scientific stories that show what it means to be human

Mahala Yates Stripling Why did Mahala love this book?

I like Caroline’s bravery. When her manic-depression surfaced, she was in Richard Selzer’s Yale summer writing class. I witnessed her ensuing years being obsessed with him as he tried to keep her stable, although she lived in Toronto and he in New Haven.

A vulnerable Chinese immigrant in a foreign land, she holds nothing back when describing her bipolar condition, confinement, and recovery. Selzer stabilized her, she said, because he listened to her non-judgmentally while encouraging her to write.

I find her to be inspirational, expressing practical therapeutic steps to recovery with a new hope on the horizon. She lectures worldwide, giving others the courage to fly.    

By Caroline Fei-Yeng Kwok,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Free to Fly as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Free to Fly is a harrowing and heavenly narrative. Its author courageously describes scenes from hell and then dramatizes scenes from heaven. It shows that with hope and persistence men and women have the chance to search and find the freedom to grow wings. John Robert Colombo There are so many wonderful lessons in this book: The inner world of someone with bipolar disorder, stigmas associated with mental disorders, strengths and weaknesses of our mental health care system, and importance of cultural factors in mental health. All of these are told in a vivid, poignant, insightful, and inspirational manner. FREE…


Book cover of Dance of the Happy Shades: And Other Stories

Mimi Herman Author Of The Kudzu Queen

From my list on transporting you to another time and place.

Why am I passionate about this?

In my life, I have always loved visiting the unsung places: villages rather than cities, places where I am the only tourist. In both reading and writing, I’m drawn to the quietly dramatic times, the moments before important events, or the aftermaths. I want to see how real characters live in real places dealing with real problems, even if all three are invented. I spent most of my childhood getting lost in books, emerging only long enough to return to the library to discover more places and times where I could snuggle between the covers of a story. As a writer, I hope I can do this for other readers.

Mimi's book list on transporting you to another time and place

Mimi Herman Why did Mimi love this book?

We all need rock stars to idolize, and mine is Alice Munro, a Canadian writer whose books are mostly short story collections about the quietly intense lives of farmers and townspeople in rural Canada.

I’m from a generation of writers who learned about writing through the stories of Alice Munro, Anton Chekhov, and Raymond Carver, among others. Choosing my favorite Munro book is a challenge—for decades I read them all over and over—but if I had to, I’d say it’s Dance of the Happy Shades.

No one understands better what it’s like to be an adolescent girl than Alice Munro, and no one is more gifted at portraying it, particularly in the stories “An Ounce of Cure” and “Red Dress—1946,” with such generous characterizations and courageous honesty.

By Alice Munro,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Dance of the Happy Shades as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

WINNER OF THE NOBEL PRIZE® IN LITERATURE 2013

In these fifteen short stories--her eighth collection of short stories in a long and distinguished career--Alice Munro conjures ordinary lives with an extraordinary vision, displaying the remarkable talent for which she is now widely celebrated. Set on farms, by river marshes, in the lonely towns and new suburbs of western Ontario, these tales are luminous acts of attention to those vivid moments when revelation emerges from the layers of experience that lie behind even the most everyday events and lives.

"Virtuosity, elemental command, incisive like a diamond, remarkable: all these descriptions fit…


Book cover of Beardmore, 246: The Viking Hoax That Rewrote History

Gordon Campbell Author Of Norse America: The Story of a Founding Myth

From my list on the Norse in Canada.

Why am I passionate about this?

I live in England but grew up in Canada, where my Grade 5 Social Studies teacher filled my head with stories of people and places, including the Vikings. In the early 1960s, I learned about the excavations at L’Anse aux Meadows in Newfoundland featured in Canadian newspapers. My first job was in Denmark, and I subsequently travelled in the Nordic homelands and settlement areas, including the Faeroes, Iceland, and Greenland, visiting museums and archaeological sites at every opportunity. Norse America is my 26th book, but it is both the one with the deepest roots in my own past and the one most engaged with contemporary concerns about race.

Gordon's book list on the Norse in Canada

Gordon Campbell Why did Gordon love this book?

The discovery of artefacts from a Viking grave in northern Ontario in 1936 was a sensation, and their subsequent display in the Royal Ontario Museum added a new dimension to the colonial history of Canada. The exposure of the discovery as a hoax in 1956 damaged the reputation of the Museum and its director. Hunter’s account, which is securely anchored in archival evidence, is skillfully assembled as an unfolding drama. In this book, the Beardmore hoax has received its definitive treatment by a scholar who writes brilliantly for a general audience.

By Douglas Hunter,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Beardmore, 246 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In 1936, long before the discovery of the Viking settlement at L'Anse aux Meadows, the Royal Ontario Museum made a sensational acquisition: the contents of a Viking grave that prospector Eddy Dodd said he had found on his mining claim east of Lake Nipigon. The relics remained on display for two decades, challenging understandings of when and where Europeans first reached the Americas. In 1956 the discovery was exposed as an unquestionable hoax, tarnishing the reputation of the museum director, Charles Trick Currelly, who had acquired the relics and insisted on their authenticity. Drawing on an array of archival sources,…


Book cover of Red Plaid Shirt

Steven Sherrill Author Of The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break

From my list on short stories to send your mind into the sublime.

Why am I passionate about this?

Most of my public success has been as a novelist. My MFA, from the Iowa Writers Workshop, is in poetry. When I grow up, I want to be a short story writer. The dirty truth is, though, I’ve been making trouble with stories since I was a kid. During my first attempt in 10th grade, I wrote a story that got me suspended for two weeks. No explanation. No guidance. Just a conference between my parents, teachers, and principal (I wasn’t present), and they came out and banished me. I dropped out of school shortly after. I reckon that experience, both shameful and delicious, shaped my life and love of narrative.

Steven's book list on short stories to send your mind into the sublime

Steven Sherrill Why did Steven love this book?

I don’t remember when or how or where I came across Diane Schomperlen. She’s Canadian, and I very much like attending the Stratford Shakespeare Festival in the middle of Ontario. It’s likely that I found her in a bookstore there. I don’t remember. I do however remember my immediate and deep love of her work. At once experimental—pushing against the boundaries of traditional story format—and fiercely human. Real people struggling to connect with, to stay connected with, each other. Real people. Beautifully flawed. And full of dignity. 

By Diane Schoemperlen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Red Plaid Shirt as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A collection of short fiction by the author of Our Lady of the Lost and Found presents twenty-one tales, written over the past twenty years, that include "Losing Ground," a perceptive coming-of-age story, and "The Man of My Dreams," in which the realities of a dissolving relationship become intertwined with the narrator's dream world. Original.


Book cover of The Blue Castle

Charlotte Brothers Author Of Creatures of Habit

From my list on romance with quirky heroines.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have always had a fondness for the quirky heroine because I find her so relatable! As a child, I was overly sensitive and obsessed with animals. I liked to read and draw, but was dreadful at organized sports, and for the most part I didn't feel as if I fit in with the expected social norms of my peers. The quirky heroines in books and literature comforted me, and showed me that first, I wasn't alone, and second, that I could find love and acceptance in a world with which I often felt out-of-step.

Charlotte's book list on romance with quirky heroines

Charlotte Brothers Why did Charlotte love this book?

One of the wonderful things about Young Adult books is that many authors understand the longing that young female readers have for heroines with real personality who overcome the challenges of their times or particular situations. Such stories move to the pinnacle of my “oh-my-gosh-I-loved-this!” list when they include a romance and by the end, the heroine is acknowledged as an equal to her partner. While L.M. Montgomery is known best for her unforgettable Anne of Green Gables (who could have been on this list), my particular favorite quirky heroine of hers is Valancy Stirling in The Blue Castle

The romance in this book is just as unconventional as Valancy herself, there’s a marriage of convenience, a beautiful setting for introverts, an island cabin and cats. What’s not to love?

By L.M. Montgomery,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked The Blue Castle as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From L.M. Montgomery, author of Anne of Green Gables, comes another beloved classic and an unforgettable story of courage and romance.

Valancy Stirling is 29 and has never been in love. She's spent her entire life on a quiet little street in an ugly little house and never dared to contradict her domineering mother and her unforgiving aunt. But one day she receives a shocking, life-altering letter―and decides then and there that everything needs to change. For the first time in her life, she does exactly what she wants to and says exactly what she feels.

At first her family…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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