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The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian (original 2007; edition 2009)

by Sherman Alexie

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6,090550675 (4.34)400
Member:matthewwalther
Title:The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
Authors:Sherman Alexie
Info:Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (2009), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 288 pages
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Work details

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie (2007)

  1. 30
    Reservation Blues by Sherman Alexie (PghDragonMan)
    PghDragonMan: Contemporary fiction about searching for identity
  2. 20
    Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison (Othemts)
  3. 31
    The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz (bbudke)
  4. 21
    Looking for Alaska by John Green (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  5. 00
    Red Sky at Morning by Richard Bradford (mysterymax)
  6. 00
    Broken Glass Park by Alina Bronsky (Anonymous user)
  7. 00
    Riding Invisible by Sandra Alonzo (meggyweg)
  8. 11
    Kira-Kira by Cynthia Kadohata (whymaggiemay)
    whymaggiemay: There are many similarities of theme, not the least of which are loss and identity.
  9. 00
    A Step From Heaven by An Na (cammykitty)
    cammykitty: Different in feel altogether from Diary, but also another good novel about entering and adjusting to predominantly white-American culture
  10. 00
    The Miracle Life of Edgar Mint by Brady Udall (kiwiflowa)
    kiwiflowa: A similar story for older teens/adults. Edgar is an American Indian orphan coming of age.
  11. 01
    Dakota Dream by James W. Bennett (meggyweg)
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» See also 400 mentions

English (544)  Dutch (2)  German (1)  Swedish (1)  All languages (548)
Showing 1-5 of 544 (next | show all)
Arnold, or Junior, faces hurdles such as physical limitations, untimely deaths of loved ones due to alcohol abuse, poverty, bullying, and discrimination. His decision to leave the Spokane Indian Reservation to go to an all-white school alienates him from his tribe and his only friend.
Alexie Sherman’s powerful autobiographical novel ultimately speaks about chasing hope. Sherman wittily couples laugh-out-loud moments with grim stark realities that will stick with readers. ( )
  thelittlestacks | Mar 27, 2015 |
Sherman Alexie always finds a way to bring his characters to life. This story is no different as we follow the childhood of Junior, a Native American with many physical problems, and his struggles to fit in.
If I'm not mistaken this book has been banned in many schools because of a brief sexual part. Were this not the case I would suggest this book for any student looking to read a YA novel or any book pertaining to reservation life. ( )
  LFerda | Mar 11, 2015 |
a flip, semi-fictional autobiography of a teenage boy who decided to escape the soul-sucking life of the Res he’d been born into. with drawings.

at first, the protagonist’s voice was a bit loud and over-the-top trying to be funny and friendly. but it became clear through the course of the book that this was the way he dealt with his life. it was not a smart-assed humor or one filled with sarcasm and veiled hate. it was open and genuine and heart-felt and nourished the reader’s caring about the characters, even minor ones. it gave them depth, too, in little turns of phrase and attempts at being overly funny. it’s an elegantly told story with real poetry at its core.

this made the tragedies all the more hard-hitting, punch in the gut stuff.

racism, death, poverty, teen sexuality, and other hard topics are dealt with matter-of-factly but with a gentle sadness.

and yet, in the end, i had to wonder about the title and the way the main character, Arnold Spirit, related his tale. to put “absolutely true” in the title seems to give a nod and wink to possible embellishment of certain story elements. i’m not sure which ones if any but the main take-away of this book is don’t just hope - do something about it. see beyond. don’t just sit there thinking “is this all there is?” get up and go SEE FOR YOURSELF. the cartoons throughout the book, too, lend to the idea that Arnold liked to picture events in a funny, light-hearted way. and, so, i have to wonder if absolutely everything in the story was absolutely true. i have to wonder if Arnold the eternal optimist and seer of Good Souls didn’t punch up his own story just a wee smidgen just to give it a nice, warm campfire glow. nothing untrue, mind you, just a bit of a polish to accent the highlights.

once again, i find that a youth book outshines a lot of so-called “adult literature” in being able to get across complex ideas and show us a different side of life. i think fiction (or quasi-fiction) like this can teach us more about life than many more serious, factual books that have no power to engage us. myths and fables and parables work: they are the ancient way of teaching and they still work. ( )
  keebrook | Mar 10, 2015 |
I would recommend this be read in high schools by all freshmen. The message of finding one's place in the world and living through traumatic events without losing all hope is universal for adolescents. It is not too juvenile for adults either. On the down side, if this is a fairly accurate portrayal of the Native American experience, well then, it's pretty sad. ( )
  MaureenCean | Mar 8, 2015 |
Intended for teenage readers. ( )
  FCAHS1954 | Feb 28, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 544 (next | show all)
Working in the voice of a 14-year-old forces Alexie to strip everything down to action and emotion, so that reading becomes more like listening to your smart, funny best friend recount his day while waiting after school for a ride home.
 

» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Sherman Alexieprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Forney, EllenIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
There is another world, but it is in this one. --W.B. Yeats
Dedication
For Wellpinit and Reardon, my hometowns
First words
I was born with water on the brain. Okay, so that's not exactly true. I was actually born with too much cerebral spinal fluid inside my skull. But cerebral spinal fluid is just the doctors' fancy way of saying brain grease.
Quotations
"No, I'm serious. I always knew you were going to leave. I always knew you were going to leave us behind and travel the world. I had this dream about you a few months ago. You were standing on the Great Wall of China. You looked happy. And I was happy for you."
During one week when I was little, Dad got stopped three times for DWI: Driving While Indian.
“Son,” Mr. P. said. “You’re going to find more and more hope the farther and farther you walk away from this sad, sad, sad reservation.”
I'd always been the lowest Indian on the reservation totem pole-- I wasn't expected to be good so I wasn't. But in Reardan, my coach and the other players wanted me to be good. They needed me to be good. They expected me to be good. And so I became good.
"I used to think the world was broken down by tribes," I said. "By black and white. By Indian and white. But I know that isn't true. The world is only broken into two tribes. The people who are assholes and the people who are not."
Last words
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Some editions, like ISBN 9780316013697, include study guide
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Wikipedia in English (3)

Book description
Jr is struggling with being a poor Indian. He is given the opportunity to leave the reservation and start a new life outside of the Native American culture. And thus the story goes from chapter to chapter. This books crosses cultures of the Native American and Reardan, a white/christian culture in a rural setting. This story can be used on many fronts in a classroom. Racism, culture boundaries, friendship(Rowdy, Penelope), and having the ability to change your life. A great story with a lot of possibilities in a classroom.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316013692, Paperback)

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 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 thought he was destined to live.


The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Alexie's YA debut, released in hardcover to instant success, recieving seven starred reviews, hitting numerous bestseller lists, and winning the 2007 National Book Award for Young People's Literature.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:17:56 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Budding cartoonist Junior leaves his troubled school on the Spokane Indian Reservation to attend an all-white farm town school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 5 descriptions

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