Named the fourth most important "Book of the Year" by the National Post in 2015 and voted "One Book/One Province" in Saskatchewan for 2017, The Education of Augie Merasty launched on the front page of The Globe and Mail to become a national bestseller and an instant classic.
A courageous and intimate memoir, The Education of Augie Merasty is the story of a child who faced the dark heart of humanity, let loose by the cruel policies of a bigoted nation.
A retired fisherman and trapper who sometimes lived rough on the streets, Augie Merasty was one of an estimated 150,000 First Nations, Inuit, and Metis children who were taken from their families and sent to government-funded, church-run schools, where they were subjected to a policy of aggressive assimilation.
As Augie recounts, these schools did more than attempt to mould children in the ways of white society. They were taught to be ashamed of their heritage and, as he experienced, often suffered physical and sexual abuse.
But even as he looks back on this painful part of his childhood, Merasty's sense of humour and warm voice shine through.
"In this book I have seen horror through eyes of a child. " - James Daschuk, author of Clearing the Plains
"A story in which our entire nation has an obscure and dark complicity. " - David Carpenter, co-author of The Education of Augie Merasty and author of The Gold and other books
"At 86, Augie Merasty has been a lot of things: Father. Son. Outdoorsman. Homeless. But now he is a first-time author, and the voice of a generation of residential-school survivors. ... The Education of Augie Merasty is the tale of a man not only haunted by his past, but haunted by the fundamental need to tell his own story. .. one of the most important titles to be published this spring. " - Globe and Mail
"Historically significant. " - Publishers Weekly
"A truly extraordinary memoir by a truly extraordinary man. " - Midwest Book Review
"Well suited to a teenage audience because of its brevity and frankness. " - Globe and Mail
"A sharp-eyed account. " - Toronto Star
"[Augie] wrote his memoir to show people the unbelievable atrocities suffered by so many Indigenous people and in the hope that others would come forward to tell their stories of what happened in the residential schools. " - Eagle Feather News
"This book is so much bigger than its small size. It is a path to healing. We cannot change history, but we can acknowledge it, learn about it, and remember it. " - Prairies North
"Carpenter's introduction and afterword. .. allow us to come to better understand Augie's 'sometimes chaotic, sometimes heroic aftermath of his life,' as Carpenter describes his last decade. Where Augie focuses on physical scars, Carpenter's experiences with Augie illustrate the long-term impacts on his residential school experience. And with The Education of Augie Merasty, he helps Merasty--who could be any number of individuals we each pass on the street--find his voice. " - Active History
"Unsettling and profound, and good. " - Blacklock's Reporter
"The Education of Augie Merasty might be a small book, but it carries a punch to it that all Canadian need to read and understand. " - Rabble