Review: The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

Title: The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian

Author: Sherman Alexie

Illustrator: Ellen Forney

Publisher: Little Brown and Company


The narrator of this tragically realistic and graphic work of fiction is a fourteen year old Native American boy living on the Spokane Indian Reservation in Washington. Arnold Spirit, Jr is starting his first year of high school. His story, as told by himself, is one of poverty, domestic violence, and racism. Arnold is a budding cartoonist and his words are accompanied by a series of cartoons drawn by Ellen Forney, often giving the reader a well deserved moment of comic relief. In this “slice of life” story that tackles a number of issues that are common to Native American teenage boys one is left with a feeling of regret, shamefulness, and only a glimmer of hope for those who live lifestyles similar to that of  Arnold. Winner of several book awards and appearing on over 20 book lists for young adult readers, this tale is one of  comedy and of tragedy, and holds an in-your-face truthful tone which  includes strong language, violence, and tackles themes unsuitable for young people under the age of 14. (Sorry Fred)


Posted by: Janine Reads


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