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July 2016
Thursday July 14, 2016
Denman Island Readers and Writers Festival 2016​
Posted: Tuesday December 11, 2012
Bev Sellars

Bev Sellars was chief of the Xat’sull (Soda Creek) First Nation in Williams Lake, British Columbia, for more than 20 years, and she now serves as a member of its Council. Sellars returned to the First Nations community of Soda Creek after an extended period of “visiting other territories.” While she was away, she earned a degree in history from the University of Victoria and a law degree from the University of British Columbia, and she served as adviser for the B.C. Treaty Commission. She was first elected chief in 1987 and has spoken out on behalf of her community on racism and residential schools and on the environmental and social threats of mineral resource exploitation in her region.

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January 2016 : A look at what’s coming this spring

August 2015 : Bev Sellars will speak at UVic tomorrow

June 2015 : CBC Recommends Memoirs by 15 Canadian Women

January 2015 : Meet Chief Bev Sellars, Bestselling Author

September 2014 : Bev Sellars Wins 3rd Place in 2014 Burt Award for Aboriginal Literature

September 2014 : 100 Ebooks Published!

September 2014 : CODE Announces 2014 Burt Award Shortlist

June 2014 : Books for National Aboriginal Month

May 2014 : Straight Talk with Bev Sellars About Her Bestseller in BC BookLook

May 2014 : 85 Ebooks Published To Date!

March 2014 : 40 Weeks on the B.C. Bestsellers List!

March 2014 : Congratulations Bev Sellars, Winner of the George Ryga Award!

March 2014 : Bev Sellars on CBC Radio Kamloops

March 2014 : BC Book Prizes 2014 Shortlists Announced!

February 2014 : They Called Me Number One Shortlisted for the George Ryga Award!

February 2014 : This Weekend! The Galiano Island Literary Festival

February 2014 : This Weekend: Bev Sellars in Seattle!

January 2014 : UBC Alumni Book Club Reads They Called Me Number One

November 2013 : Review: The Winds of Change on They Called Me Number One

October 2013 : Review: Rabble.ca on They Called Me Number One

October 2013 : Video: Bev Sellars Speaking at the University of Victoria, BC

October 2013 : Bev Sellars on CBC Radio One, B.C. Almanac

October 2013 : Number One is #1!

September 2013 : Tens of Thousands Participate in Vancouver Reconciliation Walk

September 2013 : Video: Bev Sellars Makes an Expression of Reconciliation

September 2013 : UBC Classes to be Suspended on September 18 To Encourage Attendance at Truth and Reconciliation National Event

September 2013 : Chief Bev Sellars featured in BC BookWorld

September 2013 : Talon Completes Renewal Plan (2007–2013)

August 2013 : Sixteen Weeks Running on the B.C. Bestsellers List for They Called Me Number One!

August 2013 : 500 Talon Ebooks Sold!

July 2013 : A National Day of Prayer

July 2013 : Canadian Geographic on They Called Me Number One

July 2013 : Meta-Talon: A Review of They Called Me Number One by Eric Wright

July 2013 : ALA 2013: Talonbooks Was Here

May 2013 : Talonbooks at Congress 2013 in Victoria, B.C., with Authors Marie Clements, Lucia Frangione, and Bev Sellars

May 2013 : They Called Me Number One on B.C. Bestsellers List!

April 2013 : They Called Me Number One Is Now Available!


Price Paid

Awards for Bev Sellars’s previous book, They Called Me Number One: Secrets and Survival at an Indian Residential School:


They Called Me Number One

3rd Prize, 2014 Burt Award for First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Literature

Shortlisted for the 2014 Hubert Evans Non-Fiction Prize (B.C. Book Prizes)

Winner of the 2014 George Ryga Award for Social Awareness in Literature

40 weeks on the B.C. Bestsellers list in 2013 & 2014!


They Called Me Number One

“Sellars (who is now chief of Xat’sull First Nation in BC’s Caribou region) tells a story of programming and deprogramming, of being engrained with the powerful myth of white superiority at home and school, and of the years-long process of unspooling that myth through self-help books, university education, and political activism. … While Sellars’s memoir celebrates the triumph of returning from the brink, it is also a stark condemnation of historical and extant paternalistic policies and the personal tragedies these policies continue to breed.”
Canadian Literature

“Deeply personal, sorrowful and ultimately triumphal, They Called Me Number One is an important addition to the literature on residential schools, and Canada’s reckoning with its colonial past.”
– Winnipeg Free Press

“Candidly and with brilliant clarity, Bev Sellars draws us deeply into her life while pointing a penetrating light into the darkest shadows of Canada’s racist and genocidal … residential schools. In her telling, survivors and the families of those who did not make it will feel their own stories.”
– Grand Chief Edward John, UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues

“Chief Sellars bravely adds her voice to the burgeoning chorus of stories about residential schools…. That she has been able to carefully articulate such a deeply personal and painful story is a testament to her courage and determination.”
– Chief Phil Fontaine, former National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations

“An important contribution to the collective voice now addressing the subject of the residential schools, written by one who’s been there. An essential part of the healing process. May it continue …”
– Tomson Highway

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