Back in April, host Kami Ahrens was joined by Blue Ridge Public Radio reporter Lilly Knoepp on an interview with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indian’s first published author, Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle. Born and raised on the Qualla Boundary, Annette shares stories from her childhood at the foot of the Smokies before attending Yale University. After receiving a Master’s degree from the College of William & Mary, Annette returned home to work with her local community as part of the tribal office and as a high school English teacher. In the fall of 2020, Annette released her debut novel, Even As We Breathe, which explores the American culture during World War II from an indigenous perspective.

Annette meets with Foxfire summer leadership students, July 2021.

Learn more about Annette at

Order a copy of Annette’s book Even As We Breathe from your local independent bookstore, or online here.

Get the full episode transcript here.