Book cover of Powwow Day

Powwow Day



Publisher & Publication Year

Charlesbridge, 2022

Publisher's Book Page


Traci Sorell (Cherokee Nation)

Author's Website 


Madelyn Goodnight (Chickasaw Nation)



River wants so badly to dance at the upcoming powwow day, like she does every year. But this year is different—River has been sick for a very long time, and she is unable to dance. As she struggles with the isolation of her illness and the frustration of her physical limitations, her family members provide support and encourage her to attend the event, even though she can’t participate. There, River learns the true healing power of community.

Notable Achievements

Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2022; School Library Journal Best Book of 2022; Shelf Awareness Best Book of 2022; Center for the Study of Multicultural Children's Literature Best Multicultural Children's Book of 2022; Bookstagang Picture Book Guild Best Bookshelf Building Picture Book of 2022; Chicago Public Library Best Book of 2022; 2023 Charlotte Zolotow Highly Commended Book; 2023 ILA Notable Book for a Global Society


Publishers Weekly: "In sensory-focused lines, Sorell creates a resonant, hopeful tale about the healing power of community and tradition, deftly capturing the powwow’s essence."

Kirkus Reviews: "A heartwarming picture book about the roles of courage, culture, and community in the journey of personal healing."

School Library Journal: "A tender and inspiring view of Indigenous traditions and how celebrating them can lead to healing and redemption."

Educator Guide

This guide, created by Charlesbridge, includes discussion questions, activities, a guided research project, and additional resources.

Link to Guide

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