HomeGroupsTalkExploreZeitgeist
Search Site
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Sentence by Louise Erdrich
Loading...

The Sentence (original 2021; edition 2021)

by Louise Erdrich (Author)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,0185717,043 (4.1)121
In this stunning and timely novel, Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award-winning author Louise Erdrich creates a wickedly funny ghost story, a tale of passion, of a complex marriage, and of a woman's relentless errors. Louise Erdrich's latest novel, The Sentence, asks what we owe to the living, the dead, to the reader and to the book. A small independent bookstore in Minneapolis is haunted from November 2019 to November 2020 by the store's most annoying customer. Flora dies on All Souls' Day, but she simply won't leave the store. Tookie, who has landed a job selling books after years of incarceration that she survived by reading "with murderous attention," must solve the mystery of this haunting while at the same time trying to understand all that occurs in Minneapolis during a year of grief, astonishment, isolation, and furious reckoning. The Sentence begins on All Souls' Day 2019 and ends on All Souls' Day 2020. Its mystery and proliferating ghost stories during this one year propel a narrative as rich, emotional, and profound as anything Louise Erdrich has written. … (more)
Member:sbep
Title:The Sentence
Authors:Louise Erdrich (Author)
Info:Harper (2021), Edition: 1st edition, 400 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:None

Work Information

The Sentence by Louise Erdrich (2021)

Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 121 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 57 (next | show all)
This was a tough book for me at first so I switched from reading to listening to it on audio. Having the book read by the author made all the difference for me! There's a lot going on in this book set during the first year of the pandemic starting with the haunting of the bookstore where our main character, Tookie, works by one of their best customers. I love that the bookstore is owned by Louise Erdrich! Again, this was a complex book but I am glad I stayed with it and finished it. Audio made this book for me! ( )
  Dianekeenoy | Sep 24, 2022 |
This falls under "straight fiction" in my head, despite the ghost. it's not horror; it's not really a ghost story (despite the ghost) and it's not magic realism.

I love that it's read by the author and she is a great narrator for her own work. (Not everyone is.) ( )
  KittyCunningham | Aug 22, 2022 |
My first Louise Erdrich may very well be my last. I'm completely baffled by all the praise this book has received. I can't even believe this disjointed, underdeveloped mess was published. The only thing that makes sense to me is that the publishers were willing to put out anything by Erdrich since she's a fairly famous writer who recently won a Pulitzer Prize. What a waste. ( )
  SarahMac314 | Aug 12, 2022 |
I generally enjoyed the book even though it was not my usual genre. I was surprised by the amount of space given to covid and BLM riots - topics I strive to escape from. No where in the summaries was this aspect covered. Definitely diminished my interest. The other parts of the book were good. ( )
  terry135 | Aug 9, 2022 |
I listened to this book, read by the author, & really liked it.

Pulitzer Prize & National Book Award winning author Louise Erdrich created a wickedly funny ghost story, a tale of passion, of a complex marriage, and of a woman's relentless errors. The story covers covid & the death of George Floyd.

"Sometimes late at night the hospital emitted thin streams of mist from the cracks along its windows and between the bricks. They took the shapes of spirits freed from bodies. The world was filling with ghosts. We were a haunted country in a haunted world. "
  taurus27 | Aug 4, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 57 (next | show all)
The Sentence covers a lot of ground, from ghosts to the joys and trials of bookselling to the lives of Native Americans and inmates doing hard time. And that’s just the first half of the story, before the pandemic, before George Floyd. The novel gets a little baggy after a while, as Erdrich struggles to juggle multiple plotlines. But the virtues here so outweigh the flaws that to complain seems almost like ingratitude ... The Sentence is rife with passages that stop you cold, particularly when Erdrich...articulates those stray, blindsiding moments that made 2020 not only tragic but also so downright weird and unsettling ... There is something wonderfully comforting in the precise recollection of such furtive memories, like someone quietly opening a door onto a little slice of clarity ... The Sentence testifies repeatedly to the power books possess to heal us and, yes, to change our lives ... There are books, like this one, that while they may not resolve the mysteries of the human heart, go a long way toward shedding light on our predicaments. In the case of The Sentence, that’s plenty.
added by Lemeritus | editNew York Times, Malcolm Jones (pay site) (Nov 9, 2021)
 
The coronavirus pandemic is still raging away and God knows we’ll be reading novels about it for years, but Louise Erdrich’s The Sentence may be the best one we ever get. Neither a grim rehashing of the lockdown nor an apocalyptic exaggeration of the virus, her book offers the kind of fresh reflection only time can facilitate, and yet it’s so current the ink feels wet ... Such is the mystery of Erdrich’s work, and The Sentence is among her most magical novels, switching tones with the felicity of a mockingbird ... The great arc of [the] first 30 pages — zany body-snatching! harrowing prison ordeal! opposites-attract rom-com! — could have provided all the material needed for a whole novel, but Erdrich has something else in mind for The Sentence: This is a ghost story — though not like any I’ve read before. The novel’s ectoplasm hovers between the realms of historical horror and cultural comedy ... Moving at its own peculiar rhythm with a scope that feels somehow both cloistered and expansive, The Sentence captures a traumatic year in the history of a nation struggling to appreciate its own diversity.
added by Lemeritus | editWashington Post, Ron Charles (pay site) (Nov 9, 2021)
 
The Sentence: It's such an unassuming title (and one that sounds like it belongs to a writing manual); but, Louise Erdrich's latest is a deceptively big novel, various in its storytelling styles; ambitious in its immediacy... All is tumultuous in The Sentence — the spirits, the country, Erdrich's own style. One of the few constants this novel affirms is the power of books. Tookie recalls that everyone at Birchbark is delighted when bookstores are deemed an "essential" business during the pandemic, making books as important as "food, fuel, heat, garbage collection, snow shoveling, and booze." No arguments here. And I'd add The Sentence to the growing list of fiction that seems pretty "essential" for a deeper take on the times we're living through.
 
Clearly having been written in the midst of the events that overtake its characters—the coronavirus and then the Twin Cities' eruption over the murder of George Floyd—the book has a sometimes disconcerting you-are-there quality, which can seem out of step with the story proper, though the events do amplify the novel's themes of social and personal connection and dissociation, and of the historic crimes and contemporary aggressions, micro and overt, perpetrated in the name of white supremacy. What does hold everything together here, fittingly enough in a novel so much of which takes place in a bookstore, is the connection made through reading; and one of the great charms of The Sentence for an avid reader is the running commentary on books—recommendations, judgments, citations, even, at the end, a Totally Biased List of Tookie's favorites.
 
Few novelists can fuse the comic and the tragic as beautifully as Louise Erdrich does, and she does it again in The Sentence ... No one escapes heartache in The Sentence, but mysteries old and new are solved, and some of the broken places made stronger. The Sentence, a book about the healing power of books, makes its own case splendidly.
 
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
From the time of birth to the time of death, every word you utter is part of one long sentence. - Sun Yung Shin, Unbearable Splendor
Dedication
To everyone who has worked at Birchbark Books, to our customers, and to our ghosts.
First words
While in prison, I received a dictionary.
Quotations
The first word I looked up was the word ‘sentence.’ I had received an impossible sentence of sixty years from the lips of a judge who believed in an afterlife. So the word with its yawning c, belligerent little e’s, with its hissing sibilants and double n’s, this repetitive bummer of a word made of slyly stabbing letters that surrounded an isolate human t, this word was in my thoughts every moment of every day.
Books contain everything worth knowing except what ultimately matters.
Suddenly he had a wise preternatural look. It was as though he’d only pretended to be an asshole in life but was really a shamanic priest.
Native Americans are the most oversentenced people currently imprisoned. I love statistics because they place what happens to a scrap of humanity, like me, on a worldwide scale.
But in the despair of routine any aberration is a radiant signal.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS
Canonical LCC

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

In this stunning and timely novel, Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award-winning author Louise Erdrich creates a wickedly funny ghost story, a tale of passion, of a complex marriage, and of a woman's relentless errors. Louise Erdrich's latest novel, The Sentence, asks what we owe to the living, the dead, to the reader and to the book. A small independent bookstore in Minneapolis is haunted from November 2019 to November 2020 by the store's most annoying customer. Flora dies on All Souls' Day, but she simply won't leave the store. Tookie, who has landed a job selling books after years of incarceration that she survived by reading "with murderous attention," must solve the mystery of this haunting while at the same time trying to understand all that occurs in Minneapolis during a year of grief, astonishment, isolation, and furious reckoning. The Sentence begins on All Souls' Day 2019 and ends on All Souls' Day 2020. Its mystery and proliferating ghost stories during this one year propel a narrative as rich, emotional, and profound as anything Louise Erdrich has written. 

No library descriptions found.

Book description
A small independent bookstore in Minneapolis is haunted from November 2019 to November 2020 by the store's most annoying customer. Flora dies on All Souls' Day, but she simply won't leave the store. Tookie, who has landed a job selling books after years of incarceration that she survived by reading with murderous attention, must solve the mystery of this haunting while at the same time trying to understand all that occurs in Minneapolis during a year of grief, astonishment, isolation, and furious reckoning. -Jacket
Haiku summary

Popular covers

Quick Links

Rating

Average: (4.1)
0.5
1 4
1.5
2 5
2.5 1
3 33
3.5 28
4 98
4.5 28
5 84

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 176,541,515 books! | Top bar: Always visible