Louise Erdrich is an American novelist, poet, and children’s book author most famous for depicting Native American characters, culture, and themes.
In 1984, her debut title, Love Medicine, exploded onto the scene, winning the National Book Critics Circle Award. Since then, she’s published numerous critically acclaimed, best-selling works and is now recognized as the reigning queen of the second wave of the Native American Renaissance.
If you’ve never read Louise Erdrich’s work before, I highly recommend you try her books.
Louise Erdrich’s Books in Order
Louise Erdrich has written two series, multiple standalone novels, several non-fiction works, and two children’s books. But with so much work to explore, knowing where to begin can take a lot of work.
So, in this post, I’ll give you a full list of every book this bestselling author has published to date so that you can get started on your reading journey right away.
|Sr. No.||Title||Publication Date||Print Length||Publisher||Where to Buy|
|1||Grandmother’s Pigeon||September 14, 2021||32 pages||Univ Of Minnesota Press||Amazon|
|2||The Range Eternal||October 20, 2020||32 pages||Univ Of Minnesota Press||Amazon|
|3||The Crown of Columbus||January 1, 1991||382 pages||HarperCollins||Amazon|
|4||The Antelope Wife||March 10, 1998||256 pages||Harper||Amazon|
|5||The Master Butchers Singing Club||February 4, 2003||400 pages||Harper||Amazon|
|6||The Plague of Doves||April 29, 2008||320 pages||HarperCollins||Amazon|
|7||Shadow Tag||February 2, 2010||272 pages||Harper Large Print||Amazon|
|8||The Round House||October 2, 2012||336 pages||Harper||Amazon|
|9||LaRose||May 10, 2016||384 pages||Harper||Amazon|
|10||Future Home of the Living God||November 14, 2017||288 pages||Harper||Amazon|
|11||The Night Watchman||March 3, 2020||464 pages||Harper||Amazon|
|12||The Sentence||November 9, 2021||400 pages||Harper||Amazon|
|13||Route Two||September 24, 1981||40 pages||Lord John Press||Amazon|
|14||Conversations with Louise Erdrich and Michael Dorris||January 1, 1998||262 pages||University Press of Mississippi||Amazon|
|15||The Blue Jay’s Dance||January 1, 1995||Harper Collins||Amazon|
|16||Books and Islands in Ojibwe Country||March 11, 2014||160 pages||Harper Perennial||Amazon|
The Love Medicine Books
Louise Erdrich’s Love Medicine is an epic, multi-generational tale of enduring hope. The author takes us to fictional Indian reservations in Minnesota and North Dakota, where we meet five Ojibwe families whose lives are deeply connected. The series’ first installment is a collection of stories spanning over fifty years, from the 1930s to the 1980s.
The Love Medicine Books in Reading and Publication Order:
Each installment of the Love Medicine series tells a new story. The characters and their lives evolve and intertwine from book to book. So, to get the most out of the series, follow the publication order listed below.
- Love Medicine (1984)
- The Beet Queen (1985)
- Tracks (1988)
- The Bingo Palace (1994)
- Tales of Burning Love (1996)
- The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse (2000)
- Four Souls (2004)
- The Painted Drum (2005)
The Birchbark House Books
The series follows a young Ojibwa girl named Omakayas, or Little Frog. When Omakayas was a baby, a smallpox epidemic wiped out her entire family. But thankfully, she was rescued by an Ojibwa woman named Tallow, who raised her as her own on Lake Superior’s Madeline Island.
Book one, The Birchbark House, gives us a fascinating insight into the day-to-day life of this indigenous family, cycling through the four seasons against the breathtaking backdrop of the Island of the Golden-Breasted Woodpecker.
But in book two, The Game of Silence, the Ojibwa tribe’s way of life is threatened like never before when a group of chimookomanag, or white people, appear on their island and try to claim it as their own.
The Birchbark House Books in Reading and Publication Order:
Each book in the Birchbark House series is interconnected. So, it’s best to read them in the order they were published, listed below.
- The Birchbark House (1999)
- The Game of Silence (2005)
- The Porcupine Year (2008)
- Chickadee (2012)
- Makoons (2016)
Louise Erdrich’s Children’s Picture Books
Louise Erdrich has published two beautifully illustrated children’s picture books. Here they are in the order they were published.
1. Grandmother’s Pigeon (1996)
This heartwarming story begins when a group of rare and endangered passenger pigeons takes shelter in Grandmother’s room while she’s away on an expedition to Greenland.
2. The Range Eternal (2002)
A young girl invites readers to join her family in a cozy cabin in the picturesque Turtle Mountains.
- Louise Erdrich’s Standalone Novels In Order
Louise Erdrich has also penned several standalone fiction titles alongside the above series. Here they are in the order they were published.
1. The Crown of Columbus (with Michael Dorris) (1991)
A soon-to-give-birth anthropologist stumbles across Christopher Columbus’s old diary and sets out to find “the greatest treasure of Europe.”
2. The Antelope Wife (1998)
White man Klaus Shawano falls in love with Native American Sweetheart Calico. And so, he steals her away from her people in the Montana plains and takes her back to his Minneapolis home.
But Sweetheart is more powerful than he could ever have imagined, and as time passes, he lives to regret what he’s done.
3. The Master Butchers Singing Club (2003)
After surviving the horrors of the First World War, Fidelis Waldvogel returns to Germany to marry his best friend’s wife, who died in battle.
Armed with nothing but a master butcher’s set of knives and a stash of sausages, they leave the Old World behind and head to America to start a new life.
4. The Plague of Doves (2008)
Part Ojibwe, part white, Evelina Harp is a fearless, happy-go-lucky young girl who knows nothing about the violence that once tore her community apart. But now, this long-buried truth is finally about to be revealed.
5. Shadow Tag (2010)
Irene America’s husband Gil has broken her trust and read her diary. So, she starts a new, secret diary, which she keeps in a safe under lock and key.
Meanwhile, the old diary is in plain sight, where Gil will find it and read her manipulative lies.
6. The Round House (2012)
When Geraldine Coutts is attacked on a reservation in North Dakota, she’s too traumatized to reveal the truth about what happened to her.
Her thirteen-year-old son, Joe, tries his best to heal his mother’s pain, but nothing he can do can change her fate as she slips into a deep and desperate depression.
7. LaRose (2016)
It’s the summer of 1999, and Landreaux Iron is hunting deer on his property when he strikes a young buck. At least, that’s what he thought. But as the buck leaps away, he realizes he’s shot his neighbor’s young son.
As the five-year-old lifeless body lies on the ground, Landreaux ‘s world crumbles around him.
8. Future Home of the Living God (2017)
Women worldwide have been giving birth to primitive infants as the laws of evolution mysteriously begin to reverse themselves.
And so, Cedar Hawk Songmaker ponders her fate and the fate of humanity as she carries the weight of her secret pregnancy like a noose around her neck.
9. The Night Watchman (2020)
This Pulitzer Prize-winning novel is based on the life of Louise Erdrich’s grandfather, who worked as a night watchman at a factory near North Dakota’s Turtle Mountain Reservation.
In his spare time, he sat on the board of the Chippewa Council. He carried the fight against the damaging “emancipation” bill that threatened the rights of Indigenous people across America.
10. The Sentence (2021)
A quaint Minneapolis bookstore is haunted by the ghost of a customer who refuses to leave. Meanwhile, ex-con Tookie is tasked with solving the mystery of the mysterious entity while grappling with her feelings of loss and isolation.
- Louise Erdrich’s Non-Fiction Books in Order
Louise Erdrich is most famous for her works of fiction, but she’s published several non-fiction titles, too. Here they are in the order they were published.
1. Route Two (with Michael Dorris) (1990)
Route Two is a travelog of an unforgettable journey down one of America’s most iconic east-to-west highways.
Louise Erdrich and his husband collaborated to write this book. However, their family life ended in tragedy when Michael killed himself.
2. Conversations with Louise Erdrich and Michael Dorris (1994)
A selection of twenty-five interviews with the literary power couple Louise Erdrich and Michael Dorris.
3. The Blue Jay’s Dance: A Birth Year (1995)
Louise Erdrich reflects on the joys, challenges, and sacrifices of early motherhood in this heartfelt recollection of the first 12 months of her child’s life.
The author describes the joys of nursing her baby and watching her grow and learn, as well as the sleepless nights and the physical and emotional demands of caring for a newborn.
She reflects on the complexities of motherhood, the importance of family and community, and how motherhood has transformed her identity and sense of self.
4. Books and Islands in Ojibwe Country (2003)
Erdrich invites us on a journey through the land of her ancestors to the sacred islands of Southern Ontario, home of the Ojibwe tribe.
Erdrich weaves personal anecdotes, history, and mythology to paint a rich and nuanced portrait of the Ojibwe culture.
Louise Erdrich’s masterful storytelling brings to life the complexities of the human spirit. It shines a fascinating light on Native American culture, history, and tradition. Her critically acclaimed books are among the most important works of 21st-century literature, and her incredible legacy looks set to live on for generations.
If you haven’t read Erdrich’s iconic books yet, I recommend you try them.
Are you already a fan of this bestselling author’s work? If so, I’d love to hear your reviews and recommendations. Please drop me a comment in the box below!