By Tommy Orange
Knopf, 9780525520375, June 2018, 304pp.
The Short of It:
The writing in There There is so clear and authentic.
The Rest of It:
There There is one of those buzzy books that everyone is either reading or at least knows about. When it first came out, I immediately added it to my want list but didn’t actually read it until someone chose it for a discussion I was invited to.
The book begins with an essay on the portrayal of Native Americans over time. Orange then introduces his characters through what appears to be separate stories, unrelated to one another. But as you read on, you slowly realize that all of these characters intersect and ultimately end up at a powwow where a robbery goes terribly wrong.
Each story is utterly compelling. A young woman loses one baby at birth and years later is forced to give up another. A young man, trying to make a future for himself applies for a grant so he can set-up a story booth at a local powwow, Another woman leaves the man who is beating her for a future elsewhere. An infant is born with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is forced to grow up with the effects of the “Drome”, his nickname for it. What they have in common is their Native American heritage.
Powerful and engaging. It’s refreshing to read something that feels new and different. If you haven’t read There There yet, you may want to move it up on your list.
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.
This past week was difficult. Just a bunch of things piling up. Nothing out of the ordinary but sometimes, physically, my body doesn’t want any part of it and rebels in the form of bad sleep patterns, all-over stressed-induced pain. I mean, honestly, it sucks. I am horrible at self-care but clearly I need more of it.
Taking a moment to enjoy my coffee while looking into my backyard. It’s reminding me that it’s been neglected. The table and chairs need to be hosed down and prepped so we can sit outside. We aren’t big outdoorsy people. Bugs and heat usually do me in but the IDEA of sitting and eating outside sounds so nice.
Not much going on this week. I have one fun outing on Wednesday to discuss There There by Tommy Orange. What a book.
Still reading Daisy Jones & The Six. Many have said that they gave up on it because of the format and switched to audio, which was so much better. I have no problem with the format. Ages ago I majored in screenwriting first, so the format is not an issue for me. I heard it was going to be a TV series. That will be interesting.
Everyone will be watching Game of Thrones tonight but not me. I am just not into it.
I finally got to the theater to see Us. Have you seen it?
New Things I’ve Tried:
I tried a charcoal face mask from The Body Shop the other night and it was amazing. It felt so good on my face. Tingly and smelled good. My skin looked a few years younger after I rinsed it off but the effect only lasted for a day. Ha. I would totally buy it again though.
Plants. You should know that I am a plant killer from way back. I kill all kinds of plants, even plants that survive in the desert without a lick of care. But the ones I currently have are still alive. I have some at work and some by my kitchen window and they seem pretty happy. I love to have greenery around. It cheers me up.
Question: What is your favorite thing right now?