• From the Ashes

  • My Story of Being Métis, Homeless, and Finding My Way
  • By: Jesse Thistle
  • Narrated by: Jesse Thistle
  • Length: 9 hrs and 55 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (116 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

  • Winner, Kobo Emerging Writer Prize Nonfiction
  • Winner, Indigenous Voices Awards
  • Winner, High Plains Book Awards
  • Finalist, CBC Canada Reads
  • A Globe and Mail Book of the Year
  • An Indigo Book of the Year
  • A CBC Best Canadian Nonfiction Book of the Year  

In this extraordinary and inspiring debut memoir, Jesse Thistle, once a high-school dropout and now a rising Indigenous scholar, chronicles his life on the streets and how he overcame trauma and addiction to discover the truth about who he is.

If I can just make it to the next minute...then I might have a chance to live; I might have a chance to be something more than just a struggling crackhead.

From the Ashes is a remarkable memoir about hope and resilience and a revelatory look into the life of a Métis Cree man who refused to give up.

Abandoned by his parents as a toddler, Jesse Thistle briefly found himself in the foster-care system with his two brothers, cut off from all they had known. Eventually, the children landed in the home of their paternal grandparents, whose tough-love attitudes quickly resulted in conflicts. Throughout it all, the ghost of Jesse’s drug-addicted father haunted the halls of the house and the memories of every family member. Struggling with all that had happened, Jesse succumbed to a self-destructive cycle of drug and alcohol addiction and petty crime, spending more than a decade on and off the streets, often homeless. Finally, he realized he would die unless he turned his life around.

In this heart-warming and heart-wrenching memoir, Jesse Thistle writes honestly and fearlessly about his painful past, the abuse he endured, and how he uncovered the truth about his parents. Through sheer perseverance and education - and newfound love - he found his way back into the circle of his Indigenous culture and family.

An eloquent exploration of the impact of prejudice and racism, From the Ashes is, in the end, about how love and support can help us find happiness despite the odds.

©2019 Jesse Thistle (P)2019 Simon & Schuster Audio

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What listeners say about From the Ashes

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Very Good Read

This was a very good book. I found the author's story cultural and informative. I appreciated the honesty and integrity of the stories he told. The descriptive detail kept me engaged. And I am very pleased to hear another Native's story.

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Hard to hear Jessie's Story....but powerful.


I listened to the author read this story. Powerful, painful, and real. Thanks for writing your journey!

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Most amazingly presented incredible autobiography

This book is quite difficult to listen to at times. Jesse's life was so difficult and nearly destroyed by drugs and alcohol. But the story of perseverance and love helping him conquer his addictions is among the most profound stories I've ever experienced. Highly recommend the Audible version read by Jesse himself.

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Fantastic!!

Fantastic!!! A story that is very well written and narrated by the author it is absolutely superb! It is a story that deserves to be heard!

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stunning

This book is one of the most amazing pieces of art I’ve encountered.
His words tell of pathways not taken & those others, inexorable in their grip.

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Poverty, addiction, oppression and overcoming it!

This was an amazing gritty story straight from the streets. Jesse's narratiom brings to life the horrors he endured both at the hands of monsters in human clothes and self-inflicted. Jesse's struggles and his success engross the listener. You will be shocked and will laugh and cry. Through it all Jesse never gives up and neither should any of Us!

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an important read

Jesse and his story is bound to be a national treasure. It is raw, sincere, innocent, transparent...through his rock bottom downs to his Everest climbs, Jesse Thistle conveys the tragedy of addiction and the rebirth of a life through never ending efforts to heal. He never forgets that his success depended on others loving , supporting and believing in his human strength and goodness.

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A beautiful and touching memoir-Finding your way home

Jesse Thistle’s life story is touching, heartwarming, reaffirming, and real. From the Ashes recounts his life in great detail and left me wondering how some people are able to turn their lives around because they have a larger purpose in life to fulfill. Jesse’s voice and story will resonate within me for a long time.

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Raw

The honesty can be difficult to hear but it's worth the trip. I finished spent with my tears dried on my cheeks and full of joy.

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The Truths I have Heard

The truths I have heard from other homeless and mixed race people presented here as it is and feels, with courage. If you dare to know here is your teacher. Please dare.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-07-21

Jesse Thistles story

So wonderful to hear Jesse read this! You are amazing! It shows how if we find out who we really are, and the reasons for failings in our upbringing, that we can heal fr

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-11-21

The story of hope, change and resilience

So honoured to have heard Jesse’s story. It is a story of resilience and hope. I am so happy and proud that he found opportunities to grow, because no matter who and where we are we need help to recover. Of course the choices are for us to make and grab the opportunities.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-04-21

Real look at being Indigenous in Canada

I loved this audiobook. Jesse Thistle’s account of his life through snippets of stories from his boyhood to present day was enthralling, heart-breaking, and extremely inspiring. As a fellow Métis I’m aware of the hardships Indigenous people face in Canada but hearing a first hand account of his journey from homelessness to an academic shows the power of our resilience and bravery. Thank you for sharing your story Jesse. Hiy hiy.