"Reading Lee Maracle's Celia's Song feels like the best breathing I've ever done. It's like finding an unlikely friend who truly recognizes me ... both the content and structure of Celia's Song transcend my limited worldview and expand my experience of humanity." - Winnipeg Review
"The story Maracle tells is one that makes intimate links between personal and cultural renewal, and illuminates the deep value of doing things 'just as her ancestors would have.'" - Now Magazine
"Vividly brings to life the destructive legacy of colonial times -- and a community's capacity for healing." - CBC Books
"Maracle in no way suggests that the answers to Canada's colonial past are clear, but she tells a fiercely honest and wonderfully compassionate story." - Publishers Weekly
"If you care about reconciliation and justice in Canada, ferociously beautiful prose and complex, compassionate character development, make time this year to listen to Celia's song." - Vancouver Sun
"In gentle yet powerful prose, Maracle underscores the horrifying impact of the Residential School System, the ongoing problem of suicide, and the loss of tradition that continue to plague First Nations communities." - Quill and Quire
"There is no book that I've read that has had such an emotional impact. A stunning achievement. It is one of the absolute best books I've read in years and years." - CBC All in a Day
"Lee Maracle is one of Canada's bravest literary voices. She writes with clear-eyed fierceness." - Rover Arts
"Tremendous." - Waubgeshig Rice
Celia is a seer who — despite being convinced she’s a little “off” — must heal her village with the assistance of her sister, her mother and father, and her nephews.
While mink is visiting, a double-headed sea serpent falls off the house front during a fierce storm. The old snake, ostracized from the village decades earlier, has left his terrible influence on Amos, a residential school survivor. The occurrence signals the unfolding of an ordeal that pulls Celia out of her reveries and into the tragedy of her cousin’s granddaughter.
Each one of Celia’s family becomes involved in creating a greater solution than merely attending to her cousin’s granddaughter.
Celia’s Song relates one Nuu’Chahlnuth family’s harrowing experiences over several generations, after the brutality, interference, and neglect resulting from contact with Europeans.