The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie, was published in 2009 by Little, Brown and Company.
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian has won a lot of acclaim for its portrayal of Indian culture and its subversion and denunciation of common stereotypes. However, to be honest, I didn’t really notice much of that in the book itself—I was too distracted by the vulgar and inappropriate content that left me feeling very uncomfortable.
I did notice that Junior used a lot of blanket statements and generalizations, though. So much so that it started to undermine his role as a cultural-barrier-crosser. Then again, he IS just a teenager, so that seems par for the course, unfortunately.
I also didn’t appreciate the complete lack of care that was given in describing bulimia, or the biased statements about religion.
Basically, what I’m saying is that I almost DNF (that’s “did not finish”) the book. And it’s mostly because of the gross, inappropriate teenage boy content and jokes that went on for far too long.
There were some good things about the book. I liked the theme of friendship and loyalty, as well as the potential conversations that could arise about loyalty to family, culture, and race. But I mostly wanted it to be over so I could stop reading all the sexual content.
Recommended Age Range: 10+
Warnings: Sexual situations, swearing, mentions of masturbation and erections, bulimia, alcoholism.