Mashantucket Pequot Museum Library and Archives Blog

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Vampires and Werewolves: Young Adult Novels by Native Authors

Are there any vampire books by Native authors? Yes, there are! Fans of the popular book and movie Twilight may also find these exciting stories by American Indians for YA* readers appealing:

The Night Wanderer: A Native Gothic Novel, written by Drew Hayden Taylor (Ojibway) was published in 2007 by Annick Press. It’s a compelling vampire story set on a First Nations community in Ontario where sixteen-year-old Tiffany is dealing with major mixed-up emotions about her exciting new boyfriend, her protective and strict father, and her absent, now pregnant, mother. It’s also about Pierre L’Errant-his 350 years as a vampire roaming the world until he gives into his strong longing to return to his Ojibway village. Well known for his play Toronto at Dreamer's Rock, Drew Hayden Taylor originally wrote this vampire story as a play and later expanded it into an excellent novel. You can read an interview with him about The Night Wanderer on Cynthia Leitich Smith’s blog at:

Cynthia Leitich Smith (Muscogee Creek), in addition to her excellent web site and blog, often writes about contemporary American Indian youth. However, Tantalize is very different from her well-known YA book, Rain is Not My Indian Name. A dark fantasy, Tantalize is about Quincie Morris, high school senior, restaurant owner, and vampire who loves a werewolf.

Smith’s latest book is Eternal. From the promotional materials on her web site, it sounds like a winner: “In alternating points of view, Miranda and Zachary navigate a cut-throat eternal aristocracy as they play out a dangerous and darkly hilarious love story for the ages. With diabolical wit, the author of Tantalize revisits a deliciously dark world where vampires vie with angels — and girls just want to have fangs.”

* What are YA books? They are books for young adults. Some YA books can be read and enjoyed by young teens in middle school while others appeal to high school and up readers-mostly due to their mature content.

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