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We Are the Medicine

By Tasha Spillett
Illustrated by Natasha Donovan
Scott B. Henderson
Series: Surviving the City
Imprint: HighWater Press

Categories: Young Adult Fiction, Coming of Age, 2SLGBTQIA+
Big Ideas: Aspects of Indigenous Cultures, Powwow, Spirituality and Ceremony, Contemporary Setting, Social Emotional Learning, Death, Grief, and Bereavement, Social Justice, Citizenship and Social Responsibility, Intergenerational Trauma, Family Separation, Genocide and Cultural Extinction, Prejudice and Racism, Residential Schools

Interest Age: 12–18
Grade: 7–12
Reading Level: Fountas & Pinnell Z
Paperback : 9781774921104, 64 pages, August 2024
Ebook (EPUB) : 9781774921111, 56 pages, September 2024
Ebook (PDF) : 9781774921128, 56 pages, September 2024
Expected to ship: 2024-08-20
Ebook (EPUB) - Unavailable
Ebook (PDF) - Unavailable

From New York Times–bestselling author Tasha Spillett comes the compelling conclusion of the Surviving the City series.


Miikwan and Dez are in their final year of high school. Poised at the edge of the rest of their lives, they have a lot to decide on. Miikwan and her boyfriend, Riel, are preparing for university, but Dez isn’t sure if that’s what they want for their future.

Grief and anger take precedence over their plans after the remains of 215 children are found at a former residential school in British Columbia. The teens struggle with feelings of helplessness in the face of injustice. Can they find the strength to channel their frustration into action towards a more hopeful future?

We Are the Medicine is the moving final volume of the best-selling Surviving the City series.


Tasha's graphic novel gives us an unflinching view of youth sovereignty and the reclamation of Indigenous philosophy and sacred spaces in Winnipeg's core. Guided by an Elder, the friends at the centre of the story confront uncomfortable truths that have sustained our colonial past, riding on the edge of emotions and activism to uphold the integrity of their ancestors. A must-read for all youth who want to build an equitable, just society.

Elder Albert McLeod, author of Between the Pipes