by Lisa Bird-Wilson
A debut novel with contemporary Canadian Indigenous characters, who share their experiences, perspectives relationships in their family, in their therapy, in their residential school, in their and home for unwed mothers, and anywhere else they get to.
Relinquished as an infant, Ruby is placed in a foster home and finally adopted by Alice and Mel, a less-than-desirable couple who can’t afford to complain too loudly about Ruby’s Indigenous roots. And so-begins Ruby’s life-long identity crisis, which she describes as having amnesia about something that never happened. Her new parents’ marriage falls apart and Ruby finds herself vulnerable and in compromising situations that lead her to search, in the unlikeliest of places, for her Indigenous identity. Unabashedly self-destructing on alcohol, drugs, and bad relationships, Ruby grapples with the meaning of the legacy left to her. In a series of expanding narratives, Ruby and the people connected to her tell their stories and help flesh out Ruby’s history. Seeking understanding of how we come to know who we are, Probably Ruby explores how we find and invent ourselves in ways as peculiar and varied as the experiences of Indigenous adoptees themselves. Ruby’s voice, her devastating honesty and tremendous laugh, will not soon be forgotten.
Lisa Bird-Wilson is a Saskatchewan Métis and nêhiyaw writer whose work appears in literary magazines and anthologies across Canada. Her fiction book, Just Pretending (Coteau Books),was a finalist for the national Danuta Gleed Literary Awardand won four Saskatchewan Book Awards,including 2014 Book of the Year. In 2019 it was selected to be the Saskatchewan One Book One Provincecampaign choice to promote reading across the province. Bird-Wilson’s debut poetry collection, The Red Files(Nightwood Editions 2016), is inspired by family and archival sources and reflects on the legacy of the residential school system and the fragmentation of families and histories. Lisa Bird-Wilson lives in Saskatoon, SK.
Available Spring 2020