The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
written by Sherman Alexie
Not that this book doesn't already have enough praise, but I'm going to add some to the pile. When I hear a book has won awards and comes highly recommended by some arbitrary people with power in the book industry, I am usually wary. These tend to be highly formulaic books with some life lessons, usually involving an absent father, some kind of death, probably a dog, and some hopeful gathering at the end. Which isn't to say this book doesn't employ those tropes, too, because it does, but it does so with a truly funny, genuine narrator, not some flat-voiced 11 year old living in a rural area, but a boy, an authentic, witty boy that readers of all shapes, sizes, ages, walks of life can relate to. And this boy is wise beyond his age, and it pains me to know that some children out there won't be able to experience his sarcastic wisdom because apparently honesty is grounds for book banning for some people out there. It's a book about a fictional boy telling a not-so-fictional story, and bless Sherman Alexie for writing it.