Stock Image

The Toughest Indian in the World

Sherman Alexie

6,031 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0871138123 / ISBN 13: 9780871138125
Published by Atlantic Monthly Pr, New York, 2000
Condition: Fine Hardcover
From Clayton Fine Books (Shepherdstown, WV, U.S.A.)

AbeBooks Seller Since January 17, 1997

Quantity Available: 1

Buy Used
Price: US$ 145.00 Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 4.00 Within U.S.A. Destination, Rates & Speeds
Add to basket

30 Day Return Policy

About this Item

Fine in publisher's slipcase. One of 250 numbered copies signed by Sherman Alexie. Bookseller Inventory # b18113

Ask Seller a Question

Bibliographic Details

Title: The Toughest Indian in the World

Publisher: Atlantic Monthly Pr, New York

Publication Date: 2000

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine slipcase

Signed: Signed by Author

Edition: First Edition.

About this title

Synopsis:

A beloved American writer whose books are championed by critics and readers alike, Sherman Alexie has been hailed by Time as "one of the better new novelists, Indian or otherwise". Now his acclaimed new collection, The Toughest Indian in the World, which received universal praise in hardcover, is available in paperback.In these stories, we meet the kind of American Indians we rarely see in literature -- the kind who pay their bills, hold down jobs, fall in and out of love. A Spokane Indian journalist transplanted from the reservation to the city picks up a hitchhiker, a Lummi boxer looking to take on the toughest Indian in the world. A Spokane son waits for his diabetic father to come home from the hospital, tossing out the Hershey Kisses the father has hidden all over the house. An estranged interracial couple, separated in the midst of a traffic accident, rediscover their love for each other. A white drifter holds up an International House of Pancakes, demanding a dollar per customer and someone to love, and emerges with $42 and an overweight Indian he dubs Salmon Boy. Sherman Alexie's voice is one of remarkable passion, and these stories are love stories -- between parents and children, white people and Indians, movie stars and ordinary people. Witty, tender, and fierce, The Toughest Indian in the World is a virtuoso performance by one of the country's finest writers.

Review:

Call Sherman Alexie any number of things--novelist, poet, filmmaker, thorn in the side of white liberalism--just don't call him "universal." Aside from his well-documented distaste for the word, its fuzziness misses the point. The Toughest Indian in the World, Alexie's second collection, succeeds as brilliantly as it does because of its particularity. These aren't stories about the Indian Condition; they're stories about Indians--urban and reservation, street fighters and yuppies, husbands and wives. "She understood that white people were eccentric and complicated and she only wanted to be understood as eccentric and complicated as well," thinks the Coeur d'Alene narrator of "Assimilation," who's married (unhappily) to a white man. And yet the issue of race has taken up permanent residence inside her house: the marriage survives, but it's love that's the most thorough assimilation of all.

Like The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven, much of The Toughest Indian in the World combines deft psychological realism with the kind of narrative logic more commonly found in dreams. In "South by Southwest," a white drifter finds love on a "nonviolent killing spree" with an overweight Indian he calls Salmon Boy; in "Dear John Wayne," the cowboy actor falls in love with a young Spokane woman and proves himself a charmingly feminist hero. ("Oh, sons, you're just engaging in some harmless gender play," he tells his boys when he finds them trying on lipstick.) But for every bear hibernating on top of the Catholic church, there's also a GAP-wearing, Toyota-driving urban Indian on a quest for his roots. In both realist and surrealist modes, Alexie writes incantatory prose--as well as the kind of dialogue that makes even secondary characters leap into sudden focus: "'What?' asked Wonder Horse, as simple a question as could possibly be tendered, though he made it sound as if he'd asked Where's the tumor?"

Alexie is sometimes guilty of painting his white characters with too broad a brush. (Is any anthropologist truly as obtuse as the one in "Dear John Wayne"? Could any reader really want Mary Lynn, the narrator of "Assimilation," to stay with her boorish white husband?) Yet his kind of firebrand politics still has the power to shock. A harrowing fable about whites kidnapping Indians for the medical properties of their blood, "The Sin Eaters" could be dismissed as paranoid if it weren't so hauntingly written:

On that morning, the sun rose and bloomed like blood in a glass syringe. The entire Spokane Indian Reservation and all of its people and places were clean and scrubbed. The Spokane River rose up from its bed like a man who had been healed and joyously wept all the way down to its confluence with the Columbia River. There was water everywhere: a thousand streams interrupted by makeshift waterfalls; small ponds hidden beneath a mask of thick fronds and anonymous blossoms; blankets of dew draped over the shoulders of isolated knolls. An entire civilization of insects lived in the mud puddle formed by one truck tire and a recent rain storm. The blades of grass, the narrow pine needles, and the stalks of roadside wheat were as sharp and bright as surgical tools.
It's a hard story to read, and that's only right. The Toughest Indian in the World offers so many pleasures, who could deny it the power to disturb us as well? Funny, dreamlike, heartbreaking, angry--these are stories that could have been written by no one but Sherman Alexie. --Mary Park

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Store Description

Clayton Fine Books maintains a stock of approximately 30,000 items, of which our online listings are a small percentage. The largest concentration of titles is modern first editions, largely postwar American and British fiction, drama, and poetry. Lesser concentrations are in fine arts (painting, sculpture, architecture), historical newspapers, history, biography, and sports newspapers (some Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe Dimaggio, and the like, but primarily 1980 to the present. Collectors and libraries searching for materials in these areas who cannot find them in our online listings are encouraged to contact us with specific wants.

Visit Seller's Storefront

Terms of Sale:

All books are returnable for any reason within ten days of purchase. All items
are offered subject to prior sale. Payment by PayPal, Visa, Mastercard, or money
order or check. Payment with order except for those customers known to us.
Libraries and institutions invoiced with shipment. All shipments within the U.S.
are made by USPS or Fed/Ex. Larger, heavier items may result in additional
shipping charges. Maryland residents must add 5% sales tax.


Shipping Terms:

Shipping costs are based on books weighing 2.2 LB, or 1 KG. If your book order is heavy or oversized, we may contact you to let you know extra shipping is required.

List this Seller's Books

Payment Methods
accepted by seller

Visa Mastercard American Express

Check Money Order Cash PayPal