Louise Erdrich
LaRose

LaRose

$10.99$2.99Audiobook: 12.99 (Whispersync)
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I've been meaning to read this ever since a What Should I Read Next guest sold it as her favorite. From the publisher: "In this literary masterwork, Louise Erdrich, the best-selling author of the National Book Award-winning The Round House and the Pulitzer Prize nominee The Plague of Doves, wields her breathtaking narrative magic in an emotionally haunting contemporary tale of a tragic accident, a demand for justice, and a profound act of atonement with ancient roots in Native American culture."

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The Round House

The Round House

From the publisher: "The Round House won the National Book Award for fiction. A brilliant chronicler of Native-American life—Louise Erdrich returns to the territory of her bestselling, Pulitzer Prize finalist The Plague of Doves, transporting readers to the Ojibwe reservation in North Dakota. It is an exquisitely told story of a boy on the cusp of manhood who seeks justice and understanding in the wake of a terrible crime that upends and forever transforms his family. Riveting and suspenseful, Erdrich's The Round House is a page-turning masterpiece of literary fiction—at once a powerful coming-of-age story, a mystery, and a tender, moving novel of family, history, and culture."

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Love Medicine

Love Medicine

Toni Morrison said “the beauty of Love Medicine saves us from being completely devastated by its power." Erdrich’s debut novel reads like a series of connected short stories, drifting back and forth between two intertwined Ojibwe families. Vignettes of drama, healing, justice, and magic reveal the tight bond between the Kashpaws and Lamartines. Told with Erdrich’s signature poetic style, her first work is certainly worth reading.

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The Night Watchman

The Night Watchman

When we hosted Tayari Jones for our WSIRN 300th episode celebration, she raved about this 2020 Pulitzer winner, saying she wanted to give it a standing ovation. That comment nudged me to pick it up again, on audio this time. (Why have I not been listening to Erdrich narrate her own work all along? She's wonderful in that format.) The story is based on the life of her own grandfather, who worked as a night watchman and who traveled from rural North Dakota to Washington, D.C. to fight against Native dispossession of their tribal lands. The story is beautifully, lovingly drawn: I was enraptured, and rooting so hard for these characters.

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The Sentence

The Sentence

What to say about this book? By turns delightful and dreadful, it's set inside the very real independent bookstore Birchbark Books, owned by novelist Louise Erdrich, and takes place from November 2019 to November 2020. Wonderful and beautiful and at times laugh-out-loud funny, but also heart-stopping in its descriptions of the Covid-19 pandemic and the murder of George Floyd (which took place just a few miles away). Avid readers take note: this book about books includes more than 150 book recommendations, which are thoughtfully compiled in an appendix. Make sure to take a look at the back matter, or download the audiobook supplement if you read in that format, as I did.

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