Sivulliq: Ancestor


Product Details

$18.95  $17.62
Epicenter Press (WA)
Publish Date
5.5 X 8.5 X 0.72 inches | 0.67 pounds

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About the Author

Lily Tuzroyluke is an indigenous writer from Alaska and Canada. She is a graduate student at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and previously served in Tribal Government. Lily now resides in Anchorage, Alaska.


"This is my favorite book of the year! Lily Tuzroyluke's debut novel

Sivulliq is an instant Alaska classic. Gripping and raw, honest, and gut wrenchingly beautiful,

this profound and heartbreaking story of resilience and love is as important as any modern tale

ever told in the

north. Sivulliq is unforgettable and haunting-a bold new work from a gifted writer sharing her

talent and vital indigenous knowledge that can help us all become better human beings."

-Don Rearden, author of The Raven's Gift

Indigenous writer Tuzroyluke's stirring debut evokes the beauty of the Arctic and sheds light on a dark corner of U.S. history. In the spring of 1893, a smallpox epidemic devastates Indigenous communities along the north shore of Alaska. After lighting a funeral pyre for the bodies of her husband and immediate family, Kayaliruk heads north in a dog sled with her three children to find other survivors. Along the way, they suffer a violent encounter with Naluagmiut (white men), who kidnap her only daughter. Badly injured and near starvation, Kayaliruk is determined to save her daughter and follows the men's American whaling ship with her two sons, first to Herschel Island, an outpost in the Beaufort Sea, then to Siberia. The story of Kayaliruk's journey alternates with that of Ibai, a Black whaler from Massachusetts, whose fate will eventually merge with Kayaliruk's. Tuzroyluke explores a chapter of American expansion rarely included in history books, illuminating both the rich cultural diversity predating U.S. colonialism in the Arctic and the sordid legacy of whalers who overhunted and spread diseases. The ice is as omnipresent a character as either protagonist: "unpredictable, feared and a living creature" that can shift, crack, and overwhelm. Tuzroyluke's beautiful novel crackles with a fierce love of her people and their land. Publishers Weekly