NDA Parent Publishes Her First Book, Available at Amazon, Target, Barnes & Noble


Lily Arkens, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

“I’ve wanted to write a book for nearly 15 years,” said new author Emma White, parent of NDA freshman Josalyn White. 

White’s Lakota name is Wanbli Wiyaka Win, which means Eaglefeather Woman. 

“I was given the name Emma by my great-grandmother in a naming ceremony,” said White. 

She grew up on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. She has an identical twin sister named Sarah Eagleheart and a younger brother named Troy. 

White went through some traumatic events during her childhood.

“I was in a car accident with my mom, brother and sister. We were hit by two drunk drivers racing on the highway after my mom insisted on waiting until the sun came up to drive, so they would all be off the road since she had just gotten off her shift as a policewoman for the Rosebud Reservation,” she said. 

Everything changed in an instant for her. 

“I woke up in the back of an ambulance with a broken arm, and I had hit my head. My brother broke his leg and my twin sister was okay. But, my mother sustained a traumatic brain injury. She ended up forgetting she had children. 

“The only people she remembered were her mom, grandparents and siblings. She had panic attacks when she forgot things, which resulted in her screaming and crying. She was given medicine to lie down and sleep. Her mind is at the age of a 17-year-old,” said White. 

Her mom was also a one-time addict, which resulted in White and her siblings being moved around to different relatives of her mom to finally being able to stay with her grandparents. 

White started to write her book during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“That may seem like a good time to write, but for me as a psychotherapist, it was a very busy and stressful time. It ended up being a very cathartic and healing process,” shared the author. 

She didn’t study writing in college. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Education Policy and Community Studies, an Interdisciplinary Degree in American Indian Studies, and a Master of Arts in Counseling with a Community Emphasis. 

Her husband found a book on the history of the town she grew up in that told the story of a protest she was involved in but the book did not include the perspective of the protestors. The book has a picture of White in it. 

“I kept the book for inspiration. We protested our public school’s racist, stereotypical and sexist 59-year-old homecoming coronation and ceremony, including a Big Chief, Medicine Man, and Five Warrior Princesses. The entire football team also dressed up as ‘Indians.’ We protested for four years until the school board decided to discontinue the homecoming coronation and phase out the Warrior mascot,” said White. 

Her book The Warrior Princess Strikes Back is a spin-off of the book her husband found, but it includes the perspective of those involved in the protest and a part of the Lakota tribe. 

She had three offers from publishing companies willing to publish her book. 

“We ended up going with the Feminist Press,” she said. 

This is also the first book White has published, and it was released on January 24, 2023. 

“My book is available on Amazon, Target and Barnes and Noble,” said White.