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About the Author
The late Charlene Willing McManis (1953-2018) was born in Portland, Oregon and grew up in Los Angeles. She was of Umpqua tribal heritage and enrolled in the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde. Charlene served in the U.S. Navy and later received her Bachelor's degree in Native American Education. She lived with her family in Vermont and served on that state's Commission on Native American Affairs. In 2016, Charlene received a mentorship with award-winning poet and author Margarita Engle through We Need Diverse Books. That manuscript became this novel, which is based on her family's experiences after their tribe was terminated in 1954. She passed away in 2018, knowing that her friend Traci Sorell would complete the revisions Charlene was unable to finish.
Traci Sorell writes fiction and nonfiction books as well as poems for children. Her lyrical story in verse, At the Mountain's Base, illustrated by Weshoyot Alvitre (Kokila, 2019) celebrates the bonds of family and the history of history-making women pilots, including Millie Rexroat (Oglala Lakota). Her middle grade novel, Indian No More, with Charlene Willing McManis (Tu Books, 2019), explores the impact of federal termination and relocation policies on an Umpqua family in the 1950s. Traci's debut nonfiction picture book We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga, illustrated by Frané Lessac (Charlesbridge, 2018), won a Sibert Honor, a Boston Globe-Horn Book Picture Book Honor and an Orbis Pictus Honor. It also received starred reviews from Kirkus Reviews, School Library Journal, The Horn Book and Shelf Awareness. A former federal Indian law attorney and policy advocate, she is an enrolled citizen of the Cherokee Nation and lives in northeastern Oklahoma where her tribe is located. For more about Traci and her other works, visit www.tracisorell.com.
What begins as a story of displacement quickly turns into a story of childhood fun and antics colored by Umpqua culture and the racial tensions of the civil rights movement set in the lively and culturally diverse city of L.A. -- Reviewer "Starred review, Booklist"