Saturday, October 20, 2012

Candace Reviews The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian by Sherman Alexie

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
Paperback, 230 pages
First published: Jan. 1st, 2011
Source: Purchased
In his first book for young adults, bestselling author Sherman Alexie tells the story of Junior, a budding cartoonist growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation. Determined to take his future into his own hands, Junior leaves his troubled school on the rez to attend an all-white farm town high school where the only other Indian is the school mascot. Heartbreaking, funny, and beautifully written, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, which is based on the author's own experiences, coupled with poignant drawings by acclaimed artist Ellen Forney, that reflect the character's art, chronicles the contemporary adolescence of one Native American boy as he attempts to break away from the life he was destined to live.

This review was first posted on Candace's Book Blog

All you need to know about this is that this book is absolutely fantastic!  It's one of the funniest I've ever read, but yet one of the saddest.  The thing is, the book is done in a way that even when sad things happen Junior is dealing with it in a very unconventional way.  Yes, he grieves, but I think that he has to deal with so much that his coping is just to say and think funny and ridiculous things.   And that works for this book.  It works perfectly!

This book had me crying and laughing within the same sentence.  And I would laugh so hard I'd have tears running down my face.  I absolutely adored Junior and admired his strength and courage.

While I'm not an expert on any reservation it rang true to me.  I know enough about the vicious cycles, I had friends from the reservation (a different one) and while they didn't talk about it, I was able to gather how things went.  I also had friends that went on to teach at the reservation.  I admire Sherman Alexie for tackling a subject matter so touchy.  And I personally think he did a great job.

I highly, very highly, recommend this book.  I think it is one that everyone should read. 
Some new notes: I read and reviewed this book quite some time ago and when prepping this review for this site I was reminded of how much I really loved this book and I know it's one that will always stay with me.  Recently I was telling some of my family about it and I was surprised how much the book has stuck in my head.  I look forward to many rereads.
Find Sherman Alexie on his Website.
Disclosure: I purchased this book myself and all opinions expressed are my own, I was not paid or influenced in any way.

Candace is a wife and mother to two. She’s blogged at Candace’s Book Blog since November 2008. She enjoys a variety of genres including anything and everything young adult, some adult urban fantasy, a little bit of adult paranormal romance, some historical fiction and reads lots of childrens books. You can find her on her blog at, twitter @candacemom2two and on goodreads.

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