The Legacy of an Athabascan-Irish Family from Alaska's Yukon River
This is an inspirational and deeply moving story of a proud Alaska Indian family struggling to survive in two worlds. Sam and Louise Harper and their ten children make a soul-grinding transition into a modern white-dominated society where they face bigotry, poverty, and illness. Yet, Louise remains in touch with centuries-old traditions of healing, honoring nature's spirits, and a belief that the spirits of all Athabascans one day will return to the headquarters of the Yukon River.
"...A story about struggle, fortitude, and hope."
--Ronald Spatz, Editor, Alaska Quarterly Review
"Cold River Spirits is told with wit and skill, showing the humor and joy as well as the sorrow of a family's struggle to cross the divide between cultures."
--Tony Hillerman, author of
"Harper-Haines portrays her predecessors like characters in a novel rich with flaws, strengths, and human frailities."
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Born in Sitka, Alaska, of Koyukon Athabascan and French-Dutch descent, Jan Harper-Haines began gathering stories about her Athbascan mother and grandmother in 1990. The author earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Alaska, where her mother, Flora Jane Harper, was the first Native graduate in 1935. She lives in the San Francisco area, where she continues to write.