Bernice and the Georgian Bay Gold

  • Pages:190
  • Publisher:Second Story Press
  • Themes:Métis, Indigenous, Michif language, Gereaux Island Lighthouse, treasure map
  • Available:05/16/2023
  • Lexile:590L
  • Fountas & Pinnell Text Level Gradient:Y

It's the summer of 1914. Eight-year-old Bernice lives with her family in a lighthouse on Georgian Bay. One day Bernice wakes up to find a stranger named Tom Thomson sleeping in their living room. When she overhears him talk about gold on a nearby island, Bernice is determined to find it.

Inspired by her beloved Mémèr’s stories of their Métis family’s adventures and hardships, Bernice takes the treasure map the stranger left behind and sets out in a rowboat with nothing more than her two dogs for company and the dream of changing her family’s fortunes forever.

"A treasure map sparks a coastal Canadian Métis eight-year-old’s search for gold in an exuberant, richly detailed novel from a Métis author sharing her family’s fictionalized history.... A sweet historical fiction pick for fans of well-intentioned young protagonists with enlightening Indigenous representation.”

– Booklist

"A compelling novel about an adventurous girl who finds that the real gold on Georgian Bay is right where she lives."

– Parry Sound North Star

"An excellent complementary read for indigenous or Canadian history studies. It is a worthwhile and thoughtful read and an admirable way of paying tribute to past generations. Highly Recommended."

– CM: Canadian Review of Materials

"Author Jessica Outram has given us a story with a difference: a book that incorporates many phrases in the Métis language, Michif.... When eight-year-old Bernice is shown a piece of rock with gold streaks and finds a map that once belonged to famous artist Tom Thomson, she’s convinced she can find the gold and solve her family’s financial problems. After many false starts she sets out alone to try to reach the secret location. Will she succeed? Mid-level readers (9-12) will be urging her on."

– Winnipeg Free Press

"As a story, it will interest readers of all ages, moving deftly between the warm family scenes, industries across the water, and the dangerous storms of Georgian Bay."

– Historical Novel Society

Included in "15 Canadian middle-grade and YA books to read this summer".

– CBC Books

Bernice and the Georgian Bay Gold is an amusing and informative story that serves both to entertain and educate the reader. It would be a positive addition to any home or school library.”

– Anishinabek News