I am still reeling from this read! I have never read anything quite like it before.
This novel is told from multiple perspectives. A recovering alcoholic is dealing with her daughter’s death, an overweight college graduate is struggling to get a job, and a young man is teaching himself to dance by watching YouTube videos. These separate character stories on their own were very memorable and engaging. But, as the novel continues it becomes clear that there is more to the story- that each character is connected; both by a Native American identity, and by a series of dramatic events that make the book hard to put down.
I was completely drawn in by this book. Tommy Orange has an amazing talent for creating believable, well rounded, morally grey characters. He also manages to take what could have been a series of short stories, and weave it together into a cohesive whole. When the book came to an end, I was heartbroken to say goodbye to these characters and dying to know what happened next!
Fiction, Contemporary, Adult
Random House Inc
June 5th 2018
Available in hardcover, large print, audio and eBook formats
There There is a relentlessly paced multigenerational story about violence and recovery, memory and identity, and the beauty and despair woven into the history of a nation and its people. It tells the story of twelve characters, each of whom have private reasons for traveling to the Big Oakland Powwow. Jacquie Red Feather is newly sober and trying to make it back to the family she left behind in shame. Dene Oxendene is pulling his life back together after his uncle’s death and has come to work at the powwow to honor his uncle’s memory. Opal Viola Victoria Bear Shield has come to watch her nephew Orvil, who has taught himself traditional Indian dance through YouTube videos and has come to the powwow to dance in public for the very first time. There will be glorious communion, and a spectacle of sacred tradition and pageantry. And there will be sacrifice, and heroism, and unspeakable loss.