The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian is a great book to read and I recommend it to teenagers. Arnold “Junior“ Spirit, had left his old school, with no hope, no chances, or no future, he could've followed his dream. He is also a hydrocephalic with a stutter and a lisp who is picked on endlessly, he's the reservation outcast. At school, he's beaten up and knocked down by just about every kid except his best friend, Rowdy, and even Rowdy knocks him down now and then, and brings him to tears. Arnold changed from the reservation school to Reardan High School, to people, who are not like Arnold, not as smart as him, but they are different in another way, they are white. Arnold gets picked on at Reardan, too, but he fights back and wins a place in the in crowd, and a bulimic girlfriend, Penelope and a spot in the varsity basketball team. The 14 year old Indian Arnold lived in two worlds, one full of white kids who don't make Arnold feel welcome, and one where he feels comfortable but just by himself. This book has its ups and downs and that's why it's a very good one, it seems that you know this person and you can connect with Arnold. It also shows you that friendship is important and the little things in life can make you happy and that's the way you can follow your dreams. As he's known off the reservation, loves basketball and cartooning, but he realizes early on that you've got to get off the reservation if he's going to keep his mind and soul intact. But this novel’s not just a good lesson, it’s funny. Junior is very hormonal, but he’s a teenager, that’s to be expected. I didn’t really like some of the racist, sexist, homophobic language that was used, but it felt authentic to the characters, the name calling I didn’t like.
Still, I really enjoyed this book, it taught me more about Native American culture than I ever learned in school. If you haven’t picked up this book, I recommend it, aside from the language, it’s a good story.
What other families should know
Great role models
Too much sex
Too much swearing