The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian (Audiobook)

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian (Audio) - Sherman Alexie

I don't even know what to say about this book. It's funny, it's poignant, it's raw and it's honest. 15-year old Arnold had to fight from the time he was born with a brain disorder and had to keep fighting. He's a Native American, he's the odd one out, and he realizes that to change his fate he has to do something few Natives on his reservation have done - leave it. He convinces his parents to send him to the main school - the white school. And he has to fight for respect there too. 

 

Alongside the issues that most teens have to deal with - first girlfriend, high school sports, that elusive thing called popularity - Arnold also has to deal with poverty, alcoholism of nearly everyone around him, and the deaths of friends and family. The stark realities of his life are often told in humorous ways, and I laughed a lot more during this book than I expected, and I teared up a few times too, often within a couple of minutes of each other. 

 

Sherman Alexie narrates this with the perfect balance of irony and sincerity. The audiobook "chapters" are split up by time, since they're all roughly 30 minutes, sometimes even splitting diary entries between two chapters, so I ended up waiting for diary entry titles for stopping points.