Stealing Indians

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Pub Date: 08/02/2016

Pages: 200

Publisher: Leapfrog Press

Imprint: Leapfrog Press

ISBN 13: 9781935248828

ISBN 10: 1935248820

Price: $13.95 / $19.50 CAN

Category: JUVENILE FICTION / People & Places / United States / Native American

Stealing Indians

By John Smelcer

Price: $13.95



About the Book

"A poignant story of colonization and assimilation, something I know a little bit about. A masterpiece."—Chinua Achebe

Praise for Edge of Nowhere:

"Smelcer's prose is lyrical, straightforward, and brilliant . . . authentic Native Alaskan storytelling at its best."—School Library Journal (starred review)

"A spare tale of courage, love and terrible obstacles."—The Wall Street Journal

"More psychological depth than Robinson Crusoe."—Frank McCourt

Praise for Lone Wolves:

"A beautiful and moving story of courage and love."—Ray Bradbury

"Smelcer [is] a rockstar of Alaskan literature."—Mushing magazine

"Powerful, eloquent, and fascinating."—Kirkus Reviews

"Smelcer's work has a touch of the classical, combining good old-fashioned adventure and survival themes with heart-tugging moments of clarity and poignancy that recall Jean Craighead George's Julie of the Wolves."—Booklist

Praise for The Trap:

"A gripping and poignant story, made even more so because of its basis in historical fact."—Horn Book (starred review)

Four Indian teenagers are kidnapped from different regions, their lives immutably changed by an institution designed to eradicate their identity. And no matter what their home, their stories are representative of every story, every stolen life. So far from home, without family to protect them, only their friendship helps them endure. This is a work of fiction. Every word is true.

John Smelcer is the author of over forty books, including essays, story collections, poetry, and novels, and five YA novels.

About the Book

Four Indian teenagers, their identities and cultures erased, develop a special friendship that alone allows them to survive forced institutionalization.


John Smelcer is a member of the Traditional Native Village of Tazlina and a shareholder of Ahtna Native Corporation. For three years, he was the executive director of the Ahtna Heritage Foundation, charged with preserving Ahtna culture, history, and language. Taught by every living elder in his tribe, John is one of the last speakers of his severely endangered language and the only tribal member able to read and write fluently in it. In 1998, he published The Ahtna Noun Dictionary and Pronunciation Guide. He is also one among the last speakers of Alutiiq, a neighboring, yet unrelated language. In 2010, he edited and published a noun dictionary of that endangered language.
In 1998, John was nominated for the Alaska Governor’s Award for his contributions to the preservation of Alaska Native languages and cultures. In 1999, Ahtna Traditional Chief Harry Johns held a special ceremony to designate John as a Traditional Ahtna Culture Bearer, a term usually reserved for elders with significant cultural knowledge. John Smelcer is the author of over fifty books, including Beautiful Words: The Complete Ahtna Poems, the only existing literature published in the Ahtna language. His novels include The Trap, The Great Death, Edge of Nowhere, Lone Wolves, Savage Mountain, Stealing Indians and Kiska. In 1995, John co-edited Durable Breath: Contemporary Native American Poetry. In 2013, with Joseph Bruchac (Abenaki), John co-edited Native American Classics, a graphic novel of 19th and early 20th century Native American literature. For almost a quarter century, John Smelcer served as poetry editor at Rosebud.