cover image The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee (Young Readers Adaptation): Life in Native America

The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee (Young Readers Adaptation): Life in Native America

David Treuer, adapted by Sheila Keenan. Viking, $19.99 (288p) ISBN 978-0-593-20347-7

Ojibwe author Treuer unblinkingly depicts “Indian life rather than Indian death” in this young readers adaptation of the 2019 adult bestseller of the same name. While the creator focuses on the 1890 massacre of the South Dakotan Wounded Knee Creek peoples and its aftermath, Treuer also summarily chronicles Indigenous history from 10000 BCE to the 2016 protests over the Dakota Access Pipeline’s running through the Standing Rock Reservation. An overview outlining pre-colonization Native life and the tragedy of Wounded Knee briefly contextualizes the tribe’s traditional perception in American history—Treuer writes that many Americans “saw the massacre as the end not just of the Indians who had died but of ‘the Indian.’ ” Disproving the myth that Indigenous peoples disappeared after the event, the creator conducts interviews with close friends and prominent members of Native history, including Kevin Washburn, an American law professor and member of Chickasaw Nation. By delving into subjects such as tribal termination and allotment, the author grounds readers with well-documented historical practices to better situate Indigenous peoples’ response to these oppressive regimes. Using approachable language and eye-opening firsthand accounts, Treuer unfailingly puts Indigenous people at the center of their own history to prove that “Indian cultures are not dead and our civilizations have not been destroyed.” Ages 12–up. (Oct.)