#31- The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
A full ten out of ten! You all know what that means, this book was not only an excellent read but also changed the way that I view things in life. It takes quite a book to receive this rating, especially this late in the game when I was reading books that I considered out of my typical genre.
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian is about a boy named Junior and his journey to leave the only life that he has ever known on an indian reservation.
Junior lives with his grandma, sister, mother and father on an indian reservation in Texas. He has a best friend named Rowdy and all of his life that has primarily been his only friend. Junior was born with a brain problem that left him with seizures, difficulty speaking without a lisp or stutter, and a rather pronounced skull that has left him the receiver of many years of bullying and torment.
Since grade school Junior has be treated and cured of his seizures and has overcome most of his speaking issues, but has yet to be rid of his loser stigma. Junior thinks nothing of his life on the reservation its all that he has known and all that his family has known for years and years. That is, until one day his teacher has a heart to heart with him. His teacher is a white man and comes to him and tells him that one day he will change the world if only he is brave enough to make a change and be different and leave the reservation.
Junior is very troubled by this conversation, but feels that he is destined for greater things and asks his parents to transfer to a school in Reardan, 20 miles from his reservation. His parents worry that its a bad idea, but ultimately agree.
Getting his parents to agree with only the start of his problems though, throughout the book Junior faces many difficulties, without giving away too many spoilers, three people that are very close to him pass away, he is often stranded and struggling to find rides to and from school, sometimes forced to walk. He never lets this stop him though. He says one quote that really got to me though. "My sister is running away to get lost, but I am running away because I want to find something."
I think that this quote is so profound and relatable to my life right now. I am currently applying for colleges and its been a struggle to decide whether to leave my nest in sunny Southern California and fly away to a college across the country. I still have a few months to decide, but this quote rang true to me. I am running away to find something, not to get lost, and that makes all the difference when it comes to decision making.
I loved the style of this book, loved the way it was written, loved the characters, loved the comics dispersed throughout the book (Junior draws them) and loved learning life lessons from a relatable character through Junior. If you haven't read this book, I would suggest it highly. Although there are many sad moments, the happy moments of overcoming any and all obstacles in the way is the shining point of this book.
“If you let people into your life a little bit, they can be pretty damn amazing.”