Tuesday, March 19, 2013

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

Summary: 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.

Kim's Review: I went into this book not expecting much. It seemed like more of a comedy to me, which isn't really my thing. But after passing it by over and over again whenever I went to the bookstore, I finally decided to give it a chance...and I absolutely loved it.

On the outside, this book may look like a light-hearted comedy, and a lot of parts did make me laugh. However, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian is also really heartbreaking. Sherman Alexie does a great job at mixing funny and sad at the same time, which fills up about 85% of this book, and I loved every part of it.

I also found this book to be surprisingly philosophical. It really made me think about racism and society and life as a whole. I loved seeing Junior's progression from an outcast at his Reservation to star basketball player at his new high school.

I enjoyed seeing Junior's drawings as well. Not only did they give a little more perspective to the minor characters, but they also gave insight into Junior himself.

I would recommend this book to anyone and everyone. I think this may be one of my top ten favorite books. Give it a chance, and I don't think you'll be disappointed.

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