The 2021 Big Read programming featured Angeline Boulley and her debut novel Firekeeper’s Daughter. Her book is one example of following the hero’s journey, but it contains a twist by also using the Ojibwe medicine wheel to create the story. She discussed the structure of her book at the Michigan Council of Teachers of English Conference on October 14.
Boulley structured her book into four acts in order to overlap the four quadrants of the hero’s journey with the medicine wheel. She incorporated the medicine wheel by combining the plant medicine of tobacco into the story. Each act continues to highlight areas of the medicine wheel to capture this aspect of her Native American culture.
We see a similar theme in our 2022 Big Read Lakeshore book since Circe is knowledgeable in herbal medicine and hones her craft throughout the book. One of the reasons we read stories is to learn about the culture and practices of different cultures.
Angeline Boulley announced that her next book will be available next spring about a heist gone wrong. Keep an eye out for it!