Nor does it fall into the "exception" column in its fearless excellence.
Alexie writes mainly about North American Indians, and mainly about characters who are Spokane. But it would be wrong to simply dub him an "Indian author," because the mirror he holds up is for all of us. There are no saints among the white or the red. The occasional kind heart, the sympathetic character (whose sympathies surprise more often than not), but no saints.
"Indian Killer" might be shelved as a murder mystery. But there's more mystery in what goes on in the hearts and minds of the community, and the actions those mysteries spawn, than in "whodunit."
We shake our heads at the ignorant, the arrogant, and the just-plain-mean, while simultaneously recognizing ourselves in them.
In this way, "Indian Killer" -- and all Alexie fiction -- is instructive.
It is also tremendously rewarding.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No (15 of 22 readers found this comment helpful)
Warner Books -
by John Skow, Time,
"Alexie's tale is septic with what clearly seems to be his own unappeasable fury."
by Richard E. Nicholls, The New York Times Book Review,
"[Alexie's] vigorous prose, his haunted, surprising characters and his mediative exploration of the sources of human identity transform into a resonant tragedy what might have been a melodrama in less assured hands."
by Kirkus Reviews,
"Both a splendidly constructed and wonderfully readable thriller — and a haunting, challenging articulation of the plight and the pride of contemporary Native Americans."
A serial killer is stalking Seattle — taking the scalps of white males. Dubbed the "Indian Killer" by the local populace, the murderer's action have thrown the city's Native American community into turmoil. As retaliatory hate crimes against Native Americans escalate, John Smith — a Native American raised by a white family — must confront the violence in the streets — as well as in his own heart.
Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and eBooks — here at Powells.com.