Anung's Journey by Duke Professor Carl Nordgren Celebrates Ancient Ojibway Holiday Legend

AnungCover-webLight Messages Publishing is proud to announce the release of Anung's Journey, an ancient Ojibway legend retold by author Carl Nordgren and illustrated by paper cut artist Brita Wolf. The book is distributed by Ingram and is available anywhere books are sold. The release is timed to coincide with Native American Heritage Month, which begins November 1.

Nordgren will be on a tour of bookstores and cultural centers throughout the winter. In August, he was a featured author at History Week for the Museum of Ojibwa Culture in Michigan where attendees had the exclusive option to purchase the book early.

This detailed retelling of a winter holiday legend follows the young Anung on a journey to find the greatest chief who ever lived. On his quest, Anung travels through the 13 tribes of the First Nations, across forests, plains, water, and desert. Along the way, he is accompanied by Turtle, the interpreter of all languages. He finds friends in the most unlikely of places—a squirrel's nest, a mother bear's den, and a city filled with people from every tribe. What Anung discovers at the end of his journey will both surprise and thrill readers of all ages. This legend, told in the beautifully poetic style of Nordgren and accompanied by 10 paper cut illustrations by Wolf, begs to be read aloud and savored.

Though the novella for young readers and families isn't officially released for sale until October 27, Nordgren is already receiving praise for his retelling of the legend. "[Nordgren's] storytelling is compelling and rich in images. A fascinating look at the melding of North American cultures," Kirkus Reviews wrote.

Forewored Reviews praised the book's message and the way it celebrates diversity. "This story gently proffers a message of not only cooperation but also harmony with nature... The surprising ending ties together Eastern and Western legends to reveal the unity of all people, despite cultural, physical, or geographical differences."

Shirley Sorrels, the Director of the Museum of Ojibwa Culture, also praised Nordgren. "This is an excellent book," she wrote. "Carl did a masterful job of telling an Elder's account of Anung's journey."

Nordgren was born in Greenville, Mississippi where his great grandmother's house was across the street from the boyhood home of author Walker Percy. Nordgren has worked as a fishing guide on the English River in Northwestern Ontario and on the White River in the Arkansas Ozarks, as a bartender, a foundry man, and an entrepreneur. He lived with his family in Ireland for a year where he researched the IRA, and he currently teaches courses in Creativity to undergraduate students at Duke University. His debut novel, The 53rd Parallel, was released in May of this year and weaves an ambitious tale about the power of dreams, the hope of new beginnings, and the dangers of ghosts who haunt our past.

Learn more about Nordgren online at To request a review copy of Nordgren's books or to schedule author interviews, readings, signings, or other author events (virtual or live), please contact the publisher.


Read Local
Seal StandardsChecklist 01